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Monday Night Football Preview: Colts @ Ravens

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Week 5 of the NFL regular season concludes tonight with the Indianapolis Colts taking on the Baltimore Ravens. Oddsmakers are expecting a Baltimore victory, as the Ravens are currently a seven-point favorite at most sportsbooks. The point total is currently sitting at 45.5.

The Colts finally got on the board with a win against the Dolphins last week after opening the season with an 0-3 record. The Ravens come into this game with a 3-1 record and have won three in a row after losing to the Raiders in Week 1. Here’s a preview of each team and a Best Bet to wrap up Week 5.

Colts Offense vs. Ravens Defense

There is no nice way to say this. This Colts offense has looked awful to start the season. New QB Carson Wentz is playing on two bum ankles and it’s limiting his movement outside of the pocket. The former Philadelphia Eagle has done a good job of not turning the football over, though, as he only has one interception.

Colts RB Jonathan Taylor finally cracked the 100-yard barrier last week against Miami but the offensive line has got to do a better job of giving him some holes to run through. That may be easier said than done against a nasty Baltimore defensive line.

While the Ravens’ defense has been phenomenal against the run (85.8 yards per game allowed), they have been susceptible to the deep pass at times. The Baltimore secondary is allowing nearly 300 passing yards per game so that’s an area the Colts’ receivers may be able to exploit. Expect Marlon Humphrey and Tavon Young to start playing a little tighter in coverage.

Ravens Offense vs. Colts Defense

Lamar Jackson has this Ravens offense playing at a high level so far this season. Baltimore is averaging 6.4 yards per play which ranks sixth in the NFL (teamrankings.com). Though Jackson has thrown three picks, he’s been responsible for six touchdowns (4 passing, 2 rushing). The Colts will have to have a linebacker spy on Jackson to try and limit his running ability outside the pocket.

The Indy defense is giving up 24.3 points per game, which ranks 16th in the league. This unit is giving up 4.2 yards per rush so the Ravens may try to establish the running game in the early going. The Colts’ best pass rusher so far has been Kemoko Turay, who leads the team in sacks with two. Defensive end Kwity Paye is listed as questionable on the Colts’ injury report.

Our Pick: Ravens -7

We don’t typically like to lay a full touchdown when betting on the NFL. However, our power ratings say this point spread should be around 10 or 11. Baltimore is a top-tier football team while Indianapolis is mediocre at best in all categories.

We see Lamar Jackson making his typical highlight plays to lead his team to a comfortable victory. Lay the points with confidence in this one. Best of luck!

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