This Sunday’s game between the Baltimore Ravens and Houston Texans will be an important battle to gain ground in the AFC. For the defending Super Bowl champions, the Ravens look to be in a two team race with the Cincinnati Bengals for AFC North supremacy. The Texans look to stay winning to get a higher playoff seed and better their chances of getting over the second round hump.
For the past few years, the Texans have had the Ravens number. In last year’s regular season game in Houston, a tipped Joe Flacco pass went right into the hands of Jonathan Joesph for an easy pick six that put the Texans up 16-3, and things kind of snowballed from that point on, a 43-13 snowball, in fact. The previous year in the playoffs, the Ravens had to survive a few late scares to beat the Texans 20-13 in a home divisional round playoff game. This was against third string QB T.J. Yates.
This matchup might be missing a little bit of star power, as Ray Rice might not be able to go for the Ravens. The Texans could be without Andre Johnson, Ed Reed and starting LT Duane Brown. As of now, Johnson is probably a go, but the other two? Who knows. My fear for the Ravens is that Bernard Pierce, playing in place of Rice, won’t be able to get much going, which would lead to more Flacco passing, which in turn would lead to more J.J. Watt coming after him. A positive for the Ravens is that they will be playing at home, and possibly against a backup, LT protecting, non-mobile Matt Schaub.
Ultimately, I think this would not be the best game for Flacco to throw 40-50 times, but he might have to. This should be a low scoring game, and for anyone who says I’m a complete shill for the Ravens, I’m actually picking the Texans here. I’ve been wrong before though.
Texans 23 Ravens 17
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