Free Picks: New England Patriots vs. Baltimore Ravens

Patriots vs Ravens NFL
New England Patriots vs. Baltimore Ravens, NFL, Gillette Stadium

After a tough loss a couple of weeks ago to the division-rival Pittsburgh Steelers, the Baltimore Ravens bounced back very nicely with a strong second-half performance in a 24-10 victory over the Indianapolis Colts in Week 9. The New England Patriots, for their part, barely scraped by the winless New York Jets in what turned out to be a very close 30-27 win on Monday Night Football last week.

Jackson and the Ravens seemed as though they were going into a slump after losing to the Steelers in Week 8 and heading into the halftime locker room in Week 9 down to the Colts, but they came out with fire in the second half last week and put up 17 unanswered points while shutting Indy out over the final 30. That second half performance is what gave me the confidence to bet on the Baltimore -7 point spread at -110 odds on sports betting site 888sport.

The Patriots defense continued to regress as they allowed old Joe Flacco to slice and dice his way through the unit all night at the Meadowlands this past Monday to the tune of 262 yards and a trio of touchdown tosses. If washed up, 35-year-old Flacco can do that against this New England defense, what kind of horrors do you expect the guy that pushed Flacco out of Baltimore (now the reigning NFL MVP) to inflict on this unit?

The third-year quarterback out of Louisville certainly hasn’t been having a repeat of his MVP campaign, but there is no doubt Jackson remains one of the most dangerous signal callers to play against in the league today. Though he and his receivers continue to have issues connecting, whether mental or physical, his backfield mates have been able to alleviate a lot of the pressure that was previously on the QB in the running game.

Veteran Mark Ingram has been great, going for 225 yards and two touchdowns on 4.5 yards per carry, but his status remains unknown for this contest. And even if Ingram does come back, Baltimore would still do well to focus the bulk of the carries on up-and-comers J.K. Dobbins and Gus Edwards, who have been an absolute nightmare for opposing defensive lines all season.

While Jackson remains the rushing leader in Baltimore, the pair of Dobbins and Edwards, both of whom are under 25 like Jackson, have combined to go for 625 yards and seven touchdowns while running at an impressive 4.9 clip. Baltimore’s rugged and diverse rushing attack is exactly what the Patriots defense—who have given up 131.0 yards per game on the ground this year—does not want to see right now. The Patriots will surely come to realize very quickly that there’s no escaping from this Ravens rushing attack.

Stats

  • Baltimore is 6-1 in their last 7 outings in November.
  • New England allows the 8th-most rush yards per game (131.0).
  • Baltimore rushes for more yards than any other team in the NFL (170.1 ypg).
  • Road team has gone 6-2-1 in the last 9 meetings between these two teams.

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Alex is an alumnus of Ryerson University's RTA Sport Media program, a contributing NHL, NBA, and MLB writer in the BetPicks.ca team. He has been writing on sports, betting, and fantasy contests for several years, including pitstops as an NFL Editor for theScore and as one of the lead NBA news writers for fantasy sports site FantasyPros. As a lifelong athlete, bettor, and sports fan, Alex is uniquely qualified to help you reach the sports betting success that you've always dreamed of and your wife never believed you could achieve. Follow Alex on Twitter

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