The Kansas City Chiefs and Baltimore Ravens are set for a tantalizing showdown at Arrowhead Stadium on Sunday (1 p.m. ET), but even though most analysts are picking the Chiefs, this one is by and large expected to be close.
The Chiefs come into this game ranked number one in points per game (37.0) while the Ravens rank first in points allowed (17.8). It’ll be a matchup of strength against strength in that regard, but also interesting will be how Kansas City’s defense fares against a Ravens offense that will likely look to chew up clock and keep the Chiefs offense off the field.
The Ravens are riding a three-game win streak with rookie Lamar Jackson filling in for the injured Joe Flacco (hip) at quarterback, although this will be the toughest atmosphere he’s faced to date on an NFL level.
Meanwhile, the Chiefs will be in their second game without running back Kareem Hunt and will also likely be without Sammy Watkins at wide receiver, which won’t make their task easier against the Ravens defense.
Here’s a roundup of what the experts are saying about this week’s game.
“This is a classic battle of Baltimore’s aggressive defense against the potent offense of the Chiefs,” wrote Prisco. “Baltimore loves to blitz, which they will do against Patrick Mahomes. I think that will disrupt him some, but not enough. The Chiefs will win it, but the Ravens will hang around with Lamar Jackson at quarterback.” Click here for Prisco’s full Week 14 predictions.
“Without veteran quarterback Joe Flacco, the Baltimore Ravens have won three consecutive games, with the latter two victories coming by double-digit margins and the latest coming on the road,” Bleacher Report says. “But their opponents in those games are a combined 11-25 this season, which is why the majority of our experts fear the clock will strike midnight on Lamar Jackson against the 10-2 Kansas City Chiefs at intimidating Arrowhead Stadium on Sunday.” Click here for their Week 14 picks.
Woodson: “This to me is a toss-up game. I know everybody talks about how great the Kansas City Chiefs are offensively or what not, but the Ravens bring a nasty defense and a nasty attitude to each and every game. They try to get you out, first, second, third down, and try to get you out and be physical with you. I think in the end Patrick Mahomes and his competitive nataure will show up and they find a way to win this game in fourth quarter. I think it’s tight all the way through, but the offense with Patrick Mahomes winds up winning out.”
Bruschi: “This is intriguing to me because the Ravens, they’re run heavy with Lamar Jackson, so they can take away that clock, keep Mahomes and that offense on the sideline if they can convert on third down. Lamar Jackson wants to run the ball more than throw it. All he has to do is convert a couple third down throws. They need some turnovers on defense. I’m seeing a lot of things that’s going to have to go right. I don’t think all of that’s going to go right. I think eventually Lamar’s going to have to throw, because they’re going to be down and that’s where he’s going to fail.: Click here to see the full prediction.
Jamison Hensley/Ravens reporter: Chiefs 27, Ravens 17 – “The Chiefs have scored 109 points in the first quarter this season, 34 more than any team in the NFL. The Ravens are simply not built to play catch-up, with Lamar Jackson at QB and a run-heavy offense. Baltimore’s three-game winning streak will end at Arrowhead Stadium, where Kansas City hasn’t lost since Nov. 26, 2017.”
Adam Teicher/Chiefs reporter: Chiefs 30, Ravens 24 – “The advantage is almost always with the offense in these matchups between the highest-scoring team and the No. 1 scoring defense. The No. 1 offense is 4-1 in such matchups since 2006. Not only that, but the high-scoring team has reached at least 27 points in all of these games. The Chiefs haven’t been held under 26 points this season, and it won’t happen against the Ravens. The Chiefs can clinch a playoff berth with a win.” Click here for the Week 14 NFL Nation picks.
Each week ESPN’s panel of ten experts (Matt Bowen, Mike Clay, Mike Golic, Dan Graziano, Mina Kimes, Louis Riddick, Molly Qerim Rose, Kevin Seifert, Seth Wickersham, Trey Wingo) picks the winner of every NFL game, with their predictions being put into a feature along with the community prediction of the online NFL Pigskin Pick ‘Em game. This week, all ten of the experts plus the Pigskin Pick ‘Em players are going with the Chiefs. Click here to see the full Week 14 predictions.
This year’s panel picking straight up for MMQB is Andrew Brandt (Business of Football Columnist), Albert Breer (Senior Reporter), Mitch Goldich (P