After losing the first game of the season, the Baltimore Ravens (3-1) are red hot and will have their most difficult game away from home when they fly outside of their division this Sunday, when they visit the Indianapolis Colts (2-2) at 1 PM ET, at Lucas Oil Stadium.
The Ravens dropped the first game of the NFL betting season at home against the Cincinnati Bengals, but since then, they have been nearly unstoppable beating the Pittsburgh Steelers, Cleveland Browns and Carolina Panthers, covering the spread in all those three victories.
— Baltimore Ravens (@Ravens) October 5, 2014
The key of Baltimore’s wins has been a balance offense that ranks 12 in passing yards and 9th rushing the ball in the NFL, and a bend but don’t break type of defense that allows a little over two touchdowns per Sunday (15.0 PPG).
The Ravens balance on offense is attributed to their new offensive coordinator Gary Kubiak, who has restored QB Joe Flacco confidence after a poor 2013 season. Flacco has more completions when not in shotgun than any other quarterback has pass attempts, not in shotgun. He has 53 completions on 80 attempts for 542 yards and five touchdowns; no other quarterback has more than 400 yards from non-shotgun passes, which makes the Baltimore’s offense a hard one to predict.
Of course, it helps that he has a new toy in WR Steve Smith, who has recorded 429 receiving yards this season (3rd best in the league), plus 3 TDs.
Flacco has a losing record against the Colts with one win and two losses in the regular season, but one his nine victories in the postseason came against Indianapolis in the path the 2012 Super Bowl.
The Ravens offense can’t miss when they are in the red zone because they will face a team that scores lot of points. Indianapolis ranks 1st in passing yards in the league behind QB Andrew Luck and first in the NFL in points scored, averaging 34.0 throughout four weeks.
— Indianapolis Colts (@Colts) October 5, 2014
Luck has been so good this season despite his crappy offensive lines that with 13 TDs he leads the NFL, and has thrown six TDs more than Drew Brees, five more than Peyton Manning and five more than Matthew Stafford, which we all know are completely juggernauts passing the ball.
Luck has never faced the Ravens in the regular season, but when he met them in the Wild Card playoffs clash on his rookie season, Luck completed 28 of his 54 passes for 288 yards, 0 TDs and 1 INT; plus, he was sacked three times that afternoon.
The NFL betting odds listed the Colts as three-point favorites for this game, with the game total hanging at 48.5 points.
Consider the Ravens are 1-4-1 ATS in their last six vs. AFC teams, 1-7 ATS in their last eight games in October, 0-3-1 ATS in their last 4 games following an ATS win.
The Colts are 16-5 ATS in their last 21 home games, 6-1 ATS in their last seven games as a favorite, and 20-8 ATS in their last 28 vs. AFC teams.