This Sunday. the (1-0) Baltimore Ravens and the (1-0) Arizona Cardinals will play their second preseason game. The kick-off will be at 8:00 PM EST inside State Farm Stadium. Both of these teams secured a win in the first week of the preseason, as I am expecting a dogfight in this one. The Ravens are on an unbelievable preseason winning streak, as the Cardinals will be looking to break it.
The Baltimore Ravens are coming into this one after a battle with the Tennessee Titans. They ended up winning this game 23-10, as their backups performed at a high level. I don't expect to see Lamar Jackson playing in this game either, as they can't risk injury before the regular season. Mark Andrews will also sit this one out, as only a select few starters will play in this game.
The Arizona Cardinals looked unstoppable on the offensive side of the field in the first half against the Bengals. They finished the game with 36 points, as their backups also looked solid. Don't expect to see Kyler Murray much in this one, either. He just signed a huge contract and they can't risk getting him hurt.
Can the Ravens Keep Winning?The Baltimore Ravens have now won 21 straight preseason games, as Coach Harbaugh expects his team to play at a high level every time they step onto the field. Baltimore will be without most of their key starters in this one, though. The Ravens did just cut Brett Hundley, as they will now trust Tyler Huntley and Anthony Brown to play quarterback in this game against the Cardinals. Brown looked solid last week, as he threw for 117 yards on 10/15 passing. I expect Huntley to take the majority of the snaps in this one, though. He looked great last week, as he threw for 109 yards and one touchdown. He showed that he knew the offense and it is clear that Harbaugh trusts him. According to Walterfootball.com, the Ravens have also gone undefeated in the preseason over the past five seasons, as they won't back down to anyone. Arizona also gave up 277 yards in the air last week. Brown and Huntley will need to continue dropping dimes, as they will have to attack the Cardinals with the pass in this one. The Ravens Qbs also did a great job of protecting the ball in week one, as they will need to do the same in this one. They can't gift the Cardinals extra possessions if they want to keep this winning streak alive.
On the defensive side of the ball, the Ravens looked tough to beat. They completely shut down the Titans' backups last week, as they only allowed 10 points and they looked great against the pass. The Raven's secondary showed that they could stick with anyone and they continued to put pressure on Malik Willis. They also created multiple turnovers, as they forced three against the Titans. They had two interceptions and one forced fumble, as they looked to be in mid-season form on the defensive side of the ball. Baltimore did have six penalties for 54 yards, as I expect them to bring that number down in this one. Harbaugh wants his team to play aggressively, but he knows penalties could end up hurting them. The Ravens' front seven also looked deadly, as they finished the game with three sacks. They constantly got to the quarterback, which allowed their secondary to play much tighter on the Titans' wide receivers.
Can the Cardinals End the Streak?QB Kyler Murray will not play in this game and that's to be expected. Arizona can't risk losing their stud wide receivers or quarterback, as they are the heart and soul of this team. Expect to see a lot of Trace McSorley and Jarrett Guarantano. They both split time in week one of the preseason, as they combined to score 36 points. McSorley threw for 163 yards and a touchdown and Guarantano threw for 54 yards and a touchdown, as well. Arizona also looked solid on the ground, as they ran for 112 yards against the Bengals. McSorley also showed off his running ability, as he continued to scramble outside of the pocket. He kept the Bengals' defense on their toes, as he finished the game with four rushes for 32 yards. They also kept the ball out of their opponent's hands, as they didn't commit a turnover. This will be huge in this game, as they can't gift the Ravens any more possessions. It doesn't seem as if Kliff Kingsbury cares about the preseason, though. The Cardinals are (3-4) in their last seven preseason games under Kingsbury, as he would much rather have his team stay healthy for the regular season.
On the defensive side of the field, the Cardinals had a few issues. They gave up a ton of yards to the Bengal's backups, as they struggled to stop Cincinnati through the air. The Bengals finished the game with 277 passing yards, as the Arizona secondary continued to give up chunk plays. They did look solid against the run, though. They held the Bengals to just 2.2 yards per rush, as the Cardinal's front seven continued to show that they shouldn't be messed with. Arizona did stay fairly clean on the defensive side of the field, as well. They finished the game with two penalties, as they know that these little mistakes could kill them. Luckily, the Cardinal's offense was moving the ball last week, because it felt like the Bengals were moving the ball easily against them. They will have their hands full against the try-hard Ravens this week.
Best Bets for this Game
Full-Game Side Bet
I just can't bet against the Ravens in the preseason. They have now won 21 straight preseason games, as they won't lay down for anyone. They will want to win this game, as well. Even without their starters, I still have faith in the Ravens in this one. Tyler Huntley looked great last week and I see him having a huge day against this Arizona secondary. Arizona gave up 277 yards through the air last week, as the Ravens will be able to air it out in this one. I also see the Ravens' defense putting more pressure on the Cardinals' starting QBs, as they won't be able to pick apart the Baltimore secondary. The Ravens finished last week's game with three sacks and three turnovers, as they were putting pressure on the Titans throughout that entire game. It didn't matter who was in the game, as they continued to dominate. Baltimore also showed their experience last week, as they went 2-3 in the red zone. They capitalize on their opportunities and they put pressure on their opponents. I don't expect to see either team's stars on the field and the Ravens are going to want this more than the Cardinals.
Take the Baltimore Ravens and lay the points (-5.5).
Full-Game Total Pick
I like the over (38.5) in this matchup between the Cardinals and the Ravens. Neither team will allow their starters to play much in this game, but both teams showed that they could put up points in week one. The Ravens finished the game with 23 points and they went 2/3 in the red zone. They also showed that they could move the ball in different ways. I expect them to pass the ball a lot in this one, though. Harbaugh will be looking to take advantage of their secondary. Now, the Cardinals will also do their part in pushing this total over (38.5). They scored 36 points in the first week of the preseason, but they failed to score anything in the fourth quarter. Trace McSorley also looked solid with the ball in his hands, as I trust him to score points in this one. He will be facing his old team, as I expect a little more effort out of him. The Cardinals put up 310 total yards of offense last week, they will keep it rolling and push this total over (38.5).
Take the over (38.5) and expect the backups to put up some points in this one.