Bengals @ Ravens gets our nod as AFC North game of the week
Welcome to the AFC North predictions page!
Each week, one of our AFC North feature writers will list their picks for that week and be forced to explain why they voted as they did. Keep in mind that these picks are for entertainment purposes only, and in no way should be used to influence gambling or illegal activity, unless you’re smart enough to recognize that we know more than you because we publish things.
Interesting week in store.
We’ll be treated to our first AFC North divisional game, which could determine the fate of the Ravens for the rest of the season. The NFL will see how far the Rams have actually come. And we’ll finally witness the Browns’ starting quarterback for the rest of the season…whoever it might be,
To the games:
Jack Crawford (record 6-2):
@ Browns 24, Raiders 21
The Browns, despite their annual QB shuffling, have enough on defense to effectively silence the Raiders. Expect CB Joe Haden to rise to the occasion and shut down Raiders rookie WR and future all-pro Amari Cooper, which will limit everything else the Raiders attempt on offense.
@ Browns 27, Raiders 24
With the game starting at 9am Pacific, the Raiders sleepwalk through the first half but come on strong late. Expect both Browns quarterbacks in this one. Just a gut feeling.
@ Ravens 24, Bengals 23
Bengals should win this one with better early season offense and defense. However the Ravens will deploy the “backs against the wall”, ” do or die”, or dare I say “us against the world” card, and will be in desperation playoff mode at home. It’s not a must win, but its a must win (RIP Yogi Berra).
@ Rams 31, Steelers 27
The Rams had a classic letdown week after taking out their divisional rival the week before. Although the Steelers will have all of their top playmakers this week, the Rams pass rush will disrupt the Steelers offense just enough to squeak out a win.
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Michael Thompson (record 5-3):
@ Browns 20, Raiders 17
Browns return to a more methodical offense led by veteran quarterback Josh McCown results in fewer explosive plays, but more consistency. I suspect the first team that scores over 17 points will win this game. The Raiders have to make the brutal east coast trip to play in the middle of the morning for them. We all saw how well that went for the 49ers and Chargers last week. That swings it in favor of the home team for me.
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Wernike Korsakoff (record 4-4):