The Baltimore Ravens and Cincinnati Bengals are very close to one another in the AFC North division. The surging Ravens are 5-2 while the slumping Bengals are 3-2-1. The two will meet this Sunday at Paul Brown Stadium in Cincinnati. Whoever wins this game will end up having full control over the division lead based on the winning percentage totals between the teams.
The Ravens, who lost to the Bengals 23-16 at home on the first week of the season, have overcome the early season controversies surrounding the team and have climbed to the top of their division. Their last game was a 29-7 win over Atlanta this past Sunday.
The Ravens has received plenty of help from Justin Forsett, Lorenzo Taliaferro and Bernard Pierce on the ground. They are averaging about 130 rushing yards per game this year. Joe Flacco has 1,854 passing yards this year but the Ravens pass defense has given up nearly 2,000 yards in the air this year.
The Bengals started the year with three wins in a row but have struggled in recent weeks. In addition to a 37-37 tie with Carolina, the Bengals also lost to Indianapolis this past week 27-0.
The Bengals have one of the weakest rush defenses in the NFL. They are giving up close to 150 yards per game on the ground. The defense does have seven interceptions and ten sacks for the season though. Carlos Dunlap particularly has four sacks.
The Bengals have also struggled with injuries in recent time. While wide receiver AJ Green is questionable and may play this weekend after being sidelined with a toe issue, linebacker Vontaze Burfict is out with a neck injury. Cornerback Leon Hall is also questionable with a back injury.
The oddsmakers have the game between the Ravens and Bengals as the closest match for the weekend. The Bengals are listed at -1 at home this week while the over/under for the game is at 46. The straight up payouts are rather negligible as the Ravens are listed at even money to win straight up.