The 7-5 Baltimore Ravens will travel to Pittsburgh to take on the Steelers in this week’s Sunday night contest. Both teams are on win streaks and sit in first and second place in the AFC North. The Ravens won for the 3rd time in a row with an impressive 44-20 home victory over the Detroit Lions. Unfortunately, cornerback Jimmy Smith had to leave the game with an Achilles injury and appears to out for the year. The Steelers won their 7th in a row with a 23-20 victory on the road against the Cincinnati Bengals. Six of their 7 victories during the streak have been by 6 points or less.

Joe Flacco played well last week finishing with a passer rating of 105. He completed 23 of 36 passes for 269 yards, 2 touchdowns, and 0 interceptions. Flacco wasn’t sacked and the team did not commit a turnover. His favorite target was Mike Wallace who had 5 catches for 116 yards. Alex Collins had a nice day running the ball gaining 75 yards and 2 touchdowns on 15 carries. For the year, the Ravens offense has averaged 23.3 points and 302 yards per game. Defensively they forced 3 turnovers, which each led to touchdowns and lead the league with 29 takeaways on the season. They sacked Matthew Stafford 3 times and limited the Lions to 78 rushing yards on 28 carries. In their past 5 games, four of which have been wins, the Ravens have limited their opponents to an average of just 10 points per game.

Ben Roethlisberger finished with a quarterback rating of 55 last week completing 24 of 40 passes for 290 yards 2 touchdowns and 1 interception. Le’veon Bell and Antonio Brown had big games accounting for 283 of the teams 382 yards. Bell had 18 carries for 76 yards while also catching 5 passes for 106 yards and a touchdown. Brown had 8 catches for 101 yards and 1 touchdown and now leads the league with 9 receiving touchdowns. Defensively, they did not force any turnovers but did sack Andy Dalton twice. They struggled against the rush as the Bengals gained 130 yards on 22 carries, which is an average of 5.9 yards per run. Line Backer Ryan Shazier who leads the team in tackles with 89 suffered a back injury is doubtful to play this week. On the season, they have allowed their opponents to average 17.8 points and gain 218.5 yards per game.

Pittsburgh will have home field advantage and are 5.5-point favorites. They are 6-6 against the spread this year including 3-2 at home. The Ravens have gone 6-5-1 against the spread including 3-21 on the road. They will need to find a way to slow down Bell and Brown who have 7 touchdowns in the last 3 games. This really is a home field advantage as Pittsburgh averages 7 more points at home while Baltimore averages 8 fewer points on the road.

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