The Baltimore Ravens (3-1) travel to Ohio this weekend to take on the Cleveland Browns (1-2-1) in an AFC North showdown. Kickoff is set for 1:00 PM EST on Sunday, October 7th at FirstEnergy Stadium. The game will be televised on CBS.
Oddsmakers opened this game up with the Ravens listed as as 2.5-point road favorites. That line has remained unchanged after early betting, as Baltimore is currently available at -2.5. The total for this matchup is 47.5 points. Click here for a full look at the Week 5 NFL odds and for more links to our individual game previews.
Browns vs Ravens Vegas Odds & Game Preview
Baltimore is coming off of an impressive 26-14 win over the Pittsburgh Steelers on Sunday Night Football in Week 4. The Ravens made a big statement against their longtime divisional rival, as they hadn’t won against Pittsburgh in three straight meetings. Veteran QB Joe Flacco was fantastic for Baltimore, passing for 363 yards and two touchdowns. WR John Brown had a big outing as well, catching three passes for 116 yards and a touchdown. Flacco has already thrown for over 1,250 yards and eight touchdowns over the first four weeks of the season and is a big reason why the Ravens are currently averaging 30.8 points per game (5th). RB Alex Collins leads the way on the ground for Baltimore, rushing for 158 yards and two touchdowns over the past several weeks.
On the other side of the ball, the Ravens have held opponents to just 16.3 points per game (3rd) on an average of 275.8 total yards per game. Baltimore is only giving up 82.5 yards per game to opponents on the ground (4th). They have also been great against the pass, limiting teams to an average of just 193.3 yards per game through the air (4th).
Cleveland dropped below .500 last weekend after a controversial 45-42 overtime loss against the Oakland Raiders. The Browns were up 28-14 at one point in the game but couldn’t hold on after a bizarre Derek Carr fumble was recovered for a touchdown but then overruled due to a quick whistle by an official. They also had an apparent first down overturned after Carlos Hyde appeared to give the Browns a new set of downs with under two minutes left in the game. In any event, Cleveland has really turned things around since QB Baker Mayfield took over for Tyrod Taylor on Thursday Night Football in Week 3. Mayfield has completed almost 60% of his passes for 494 yards and two touchdowns over his last three games. As a whole, the Browns are currently averaging 25.5 points per game (11th) on 366.0 total yards.
It has been a bit of a struggle defensively for Cleveland so far this season, as opponents are averaging 26.0 points per game on 395.0 total yards. The Browns have really had a hard time against the pass, as opponents have averaged 278.3 yards per game through the air (23rd).
Free NFL Betting Prediction: Baltimore -2.5
This should be a pretty tight game between two AFC North rivals. Cleveland has really improved this year and looks to finally be on the right path towards respectability after being a laughingstock for years. However, Baltimore should be favored by more than a field goal in this spot, especially after such an impressive win on the road at Heinz Field last weekend. I don’t think the Browns have enough grit or mental maturity to defeat the Ravens this week, especially since Baltimore is locked in a battle with Cincinnati for first place in the division. Flacco has been firing on all cylinders and has really been spreading the ball out well as of late. Snead and Brown are both legitimate threats through the air and I fully expect Cleveland to have their share of struggles defensively yet again here in Week 5.
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Cleveland is just 8-24 ATS over their last 32 games following an ATS loss. They are also just 5-15-1 ATS over their past 21 games against AFC North opponents and 6-17 ATS in their last 23 home games. On the other hand, Baltimore is 3-0-1 ATS in their last four meetings on the road against Cleveland, 5-0 ATS over their past five meetings overall, and 5-0-1 ATS over their last six games on grass.
The home team is also just 4-12-1 ATS over the past 17 games in this particular series. I’m fully expecting that trend to continue again this week, as Baltimore will just be too much to handle – on both sides of the ball – for Cleveland to handle. I think Baltimore should be able to win this game by at least six points, so I’m happy to lay 2.5 to 3 points and roll with the road favorite.