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AFC North Bet - Week 6 - New England Patriots Host Baltimore Ravens

Posted by Marcello Messina on 10/14/2010 3:05:19 PM

The Baltimore Ravens (4-1) have won three straight victories and are 2-0 ATS as an underdog. Here are the top 3 reasons why the Ravens will cover (+3) against New England who are 1-2 ATS as a favorite in this AFC North bet game.

(4-1) Baltimore Ravens at (3-1) New England Patriots
Live from Gillette Stadium – MA
Kickoff: 1:00 PM EST Sunday, October 17, 2010
Broadcast: CBS

NorthBet NFL Game Odds:
Baltimore Ravens +3
New England Patriots -3
Total 44.5

1. New England's Defense

The Patriots defense has been putrid this North Bet season.

With an average age of 26 (the youngest since 2003), New England's defense is certainly showcasing some growing pains. Through four games this season, the Pats are ranked 28th in the NFL defending the pass, surrendering an average of almost 275 yards per game.

Those numbers wouldn't be so bad if they were against elite quarterbacks but instead, Carson Palmer, Ryan Fitzpatrick, and Chad Henne have been the signal quarterbacks lighting up the Patriots secondary.

To make matters worse, New England has been terrible against the run this AFC North bet season. Their best performance of the season was their Week 1 matchup with the Bengals when they held Cedric Benson to 43 rushing yards and a touchdown.

The Patriots are allowing an average of more than 110 rushing yards per game.

Baltimore running back Ray Rice should find plenty of holes in New England's front four and score enough to make even his fantasy supporters satisfied. Rice is coming off a season-high 133 rushing yards and two touchdowns against the Broncos a week ago.

2. Baltimore's Defense

Led by who else - Ray Lewis - the Ravens have yet again solidified themselves as one of the NFL's best defenses.

They presently stand as the second-best pass defense in the league, allowing just over 150 yards per game. Baltimore has also only given up three passing touchdowns in their past five games combined.

Tom Brady and company will have a heap of work to do if they are going to beat the Ravens for a big play downfield. This North Bet Sunday will be a true test for New England's offense, their first game of the year without Randy Moss.

The Ravens also possess a top 10 run defense, permitting just about 100 rushing yards per game. Consequently, the Pats (who run the ball 48% of the time) will not go very far trying to run on first and second downs with 3-year pro BenJarvus Green-Ellis.

3. Joe Flacco

The most underrated player on Baltimore's roster is their quarterback Joe Flacco.

Flacco, who threw for nearly 200 passing yards and ran for a touchdown received practically no credit for Baltimore's 31-17 win over Denver last week.

While adjusting to an entirely different receiving corps this North Bet season, Flacco has averaged one passing touchdown as well as 223.2 passing yards per game.

Whenever his offensive line gives him enough time to scan the field, he makes big plays and delivers. Flacco should have enough time in the pocket this week against the Pats who have only sacked opposing quarterbacks seven times.

Joe Flacco, who is coming off of some momentum from his performance against Denver last week will surely connect with his three All-Pro wide receivers with ease this North Bet Sunday.

AFC North Bet Pick: Baltimore Ravens (+3).

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