Ravens vs. Falcons Week 1 NFL Preseason Pick: August 9th 2012
Week 1 NFL Preseason Picks: August 9th 2012
Baltimore Ravens vs. Atlanta Falcons
Current line: Atlanta (-1.5/33.5).
Baltimore and Atlanta meet again for the second straight preseason. Baltimore won the meeting last year, 21-7 getting 3. The Ravens face Atlanta from Georgia Dome on Thursday at 7:30pmET.
Baltimore is coming off a 12-4 season that ended with a dropped pass in the end zone against New England in the conference semifinals. They also went 8-7-1 ATS and were 9-7 Over. Last year, they went 2-2 in the preseason and John Harbaugh is 11-5 SU, 9-7 ATS and 5-11 Under in the preseason. Atlanta is coming off a10-6 SU season and were 8-8 ATS and 7-9 Under. Last year, they went 1-3 ATS in the preseason while Mike Smith is 9-7 ATS, 6-10 SU and 6-10 Under in preseason.
The game is being played in a dome (no weather).
Baltimore lost LBs Jarret Johnson in free agency and Terrell Suggs to an Achilles’ tendon injury (might be back by November). But the Ravens are still considered to be a favorite in the AFC with Ray Rice back and Joe Flacco showing improvements. They were also second against the run last year (92.6ypg). Atlanta was sixth against the run (97ypg) and will have a new defensive coordinator in Mike Nolan. He needs to improve a pass defense that has been ranked in the 20s the last four seasons.The addition of CB Asante Samuel should be a big boost.
Both teams have quality young starters in Flacco and Matt Ryan for the Falcons. Neither should play a lot as the Ravens are probably going to bench many of their older starters (like Ray Lewis, Haloti Ngata and Ed Reed). After Flacco, Tyrod Taylor and Curtis Painter are a big drop-off. Atlanta will go to Chris Redman, John Parker Wilson and rookie Dominique Davis.
Baltimore has one major injury issue with Terrell Suggs (Achilles). C Matt Birk (back) will probably not play. Atlanta DT Corey Peters (foot) is out.
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