NFL Preseason: Buffalo Bills vs Baltimore Ravens
When: 7:00 PM EDT, Saturday, August 26, 2017
Where: M&T Bank Stadium in Baltimore, Maryland
Lines: Baltimore -3.5
Tonight on the NFL gridiron, the Buffalo Bills will square off with the Baltimore Ravens at M&T Bank Stadium in the 3rd preseason game for both teams. The Bills are 0-2 so far as they fell 17-10 to Minnesota and then 20-16 to the Eagles, while the Ravens have gone 2-0 in the preseason so far with a 23-3 win over Washington and then a 31-7 win over the Dolphins.
Bills Are Still Looking For Their First Win
The Buffalo Bills were just 7-9 last year and were looking to have a good showing in the preseason, so they could gain some confidence for the upcoming season. Well, that has happened as they have lost their first two games and it has been their offense that has held them back. Through the first two games so far, the Bill has averaged just 13 ppg, despite the fact that they have put 385 ypg, which is 6th in the league in the preseason so far. The offense last year averaged 354 ypg and a very respectable 25 ppg. Tyrod Taylor had a very solid season last year with 3023 yards passing, 17 TDs and just six INTs, but he has struggled in his two games so far as he has thrown for 99 yards, with no TDs and two INTs. They will really need him to improve in this dress rehearsal game or this offense may be in trouble this year. Nate Peterman has had a solid showing so far as he has thrown for 279 yards with a TD and no INTs in his two games played so far.
2nd round pick Zay Jones has three receptions for 42 yards and no INTs in his two games so far, while Nick O’Leary has led them in receiving with 66 yards and Jonathan Williams has led them in rushing with 68 yards on just 11 carries (6.2 ypc). The Defense has had very little problems in the preseason so far as they have allowed just 18.5 ppg on 285.5 yards of total offense. CB Tre ‘Davious White was their top pick in draft and he has had four tackles so far the. Look for him to play a bit more in this one. The Bills allowed 357 ypg and 24 ppg last year, so they really have to be pleased with their play on the defensive side of the ball so far and that defense will need to play well here against a Baltimore offense that has looked good in the early going. The Bill will really look to get their offense going in this one, which ist hasn’t in the first two games.
The Ravens Crush Miami On The Road
The Baltimore Ravens are just the opposite of the Bills as they have won their first two games to start their preseason campaign. They beat the Redskins by a score of 23-3 here at home and then followed that up with a 31-7 rout of the Dolphins on the road. In that dolphins win they outgained the Fish 382-120 and outfirstdowned them 21-9. Joe Flacco didn’t play in the game, but Ryan Mallett and rookie Josh Woodrum combined to throw for 223 yards on 21 of 32 passing. Mallet really did throw two picks in the game, but still, he looks as if he will be the one to backup Flacco this year. This offense really looks solid so far and will be even better with Flacco in there. They have averaged 27 ppg so far and 136.5 ypg on the ground, which is 4th in the preseason. That ground attack really struggled last year as they averaged just 91 ypg rushing a year ago, so they have to be pleased with the improvements there. Leading them in rushing so far has been Taquan Mizzell, who has 89 yards.
The Ravens have been the most impressive team in the preseason so far, especially on the defensive side of the ball. So far, through two games, the Ravens have allowed a mere 129 ypg of total offense to their opposition and just 10 total points. Yikes. Last year they allowed 322 ypg and 20 ppg, which are both respectable, but they felt the need to draft more defense in the offseason as their first four picks and five of their seven overall came on that side of the ball. Top pick CB Marlon Humphrey has yet to play a game, but he will be in this one and they are excited to have him in there as they finally get to see what he can do. The Ravens were 9th in the league in pass defense last year, allowing just 232.8 ypg through the air. And they should be just as strong this year. This is a solid team, but still, it is just the preseason and we will get a better gauge of this team in this game.
- 7-3-1 ATS in their last 11 games on fieldturf
- 8-17-1 ATS in their last 26 games on fieldturf
Can the Buffalo Bills get their first win of the preseason and hand the Ravens their first loss? The Bill have had all sorts of problems on offense so far and the Ravens have given up very little and that doesn’t bode well at all for the Bills. The Ravens have really won easily in their first two games, but I don’t feel it will be that easy in this one. The Bills have shown very little offense so far, but I look for them to find just enough of it to keep this one close, especially with Tyrod Taylor getting a bit more time and then Nate Peterman a bit later on should also be able to do enough to keep the bills in it. The defense for Buffalo has been very strong in the early going and it will make enough plays against a Ravens offense that may have overachieved some so far. I look for the Bills to keep this one close.
Pick: Buffalo Plus The Points
The Baltimore Ravens have really looked good in the early going, while the Bills have struggled. This has a chance to be a good game, despite the opposite directions that the teams are heading in. The big issue for the Bills so far has been their offense, which has really struggled so far and they will be taking on a Baltimore defense that has allowed just 129 ypg and 10 total points through their first two games. I just don’t see the Bills scoring a ton in this game, but I also don’t see them giving up too much as their defense has been very good in the early going and they should be able to shut down a Baltimore offense that has played better than it really is so far. The Under is 6-1 the last seven games between these teams so I’ll look for a 17-14 type game.