A key divisional showdown will unfold to close out a busy slate of Week 14 action as the Baltimore Ravens head to Cleveland to take on the Browns. In a tight post-season battle, it’s beyond clear that both of these teams desperately need the victory come Monday evening.
Baltimore bounced back last week after a bit of lull in their season on a rare Tuesday evening of football against Dallas. Though they’re still battling injuries, and Lamar Jackson isn’t playing at the level he did last season – Baltimore remains a formidable foe. At 7-5, it’s time to start stringing together victories to ensure post-season qualification, and this divisional encounter represents a prime opportunity.
For the Browns, they enter as one of the definite surprises in the entire league so far. Boasting a stellar 9-3 record, the Browns are all but certain of a playoff spot, and should continue their push for the AFC North divisional title – especially after Pittsburgh’s loss last night to Buffalo. The Browns have been stellar on defense, and Baker Mayfield seems to finally be playing up to his potential. Whether or not he can continue his torrid pace against a tough Ravens’ defense, is certainly one storyline to monitor for Monday Night Football.
This does promise to be a thrilling encounter and a game with pretty significant playoff implications. As always, continue reading beneath the posted odds as we look to secure yet another winning and profitable NFL week right here at TheSportsGeek. Enjoy this AFC North showdown, folks!
Baltimore Ravens vs. Cleveland Browns Betting Odds:
Baltimore Ravens -3 (-120)
@ Cleveland Browns +3 (+100)
Over 45.5 (-110)
Under 45.5 (-110)
*Betting odds provided by BetOnline.ag
Baltimore Ravens vs. Cleveland Browns Pick:
It will be interesting to see how Baltimore moves the ball in this contest, as Lamar Jackson certainly has not been anywhere near the levels we saw him last season. Last time out vs. Dallas, Baltimore showed their offensive prowess, but it won’t come easy against an improving and mostly healthy Browns’ defense.
Though Cleveland is depleted within their secondary, as both Greedy Williams and Denzel Ward will miss out – it’s uncertain if the Ravens’ passing attack is good enough to take advantage. Their running game and the legs of Jackson are always threats, but the Baltimore QB has struggled throwing the ball downfield, and it’s unlikely that suddenly flips on Monday night.
Adding to the intrigue is the fact that Baltimore hasn’t been blocking well for Jackson this season, and though he’s as elusive as they come – the Cleveland pass rush is going to apply all kinds of pressure, easily winning the battle at the line of scrimmage. The Browns again have the recipe to rattle Jackson, and should limit this offense.
For the Browns, Baker Mayfield’s offense looked dynamite against the Titans last time out. Mayfield had 4 TD passes in the first half, and though Tennessee was banged up – it’s still a solid stop unit. Cleveland finally seems to be finding their offensive stride, at exactly the right moment.
Regardless, if the Browns continue to give Mayfield good blocking in the pocket, there are options downfield that Cleveland can and should exploit. Jarvis Landry has been elite since Odell Beckham Jr. went down, and the pass-catching ability of Nick Chubb and Kareem Hunt cannot be understated. They should be able to move the football.
This is really a tale of two squads trending in vastly different directions, and a situation where the Browns should be getting a bit more respect. Their defense has the tools to frustrate Baltimore’s best weapons, while the Cleveland offense is well-positioned to keep the chains moving in a variety of ways. These aren’t last season’s Ravens, and the Browns should take care of business Monday night at home.