Ravens, Bengals picked to prevail

The Ravens and Bengals are primed for 3-1 starts in the AFC North. Both are favored as week four arrives in the National Football League.

Coming off a dramatic, game-ending victory Sunday night vs. New England, Baltimore faces a short week prior to tonight’s divisional matchup against the winless Browns.

A fourth consecutive loss and Cleveland will be considered an afterthought regarding its chances to make a postseason run.

But such is life on the lakefront where a four-win season appears more than likely.

Pittsburgh, meanwhile, encounters the earliest bye week which won’t sit well with the Black & Gold following their belly-up performance last Sunday at Oakland.

This column turned in another .500 output last week. We’re putting the blame squarely on the shoulders of the league’s replacement officials which must have cost us at least three or four decisions. However …


CLEVELAND AT BALTIMORE. Brownies are catching Baltimore at a good time. Which should only make the final score somewhat more respectable. RAVENS, 24-17.


SAN FRANCISCO AT NEW YORK JETS. One of the weekend’s most attractive matchups figures to be a low-scoring affair. JETS, 17-14.

NEW ENGLAND AT BUFFALO. Pats generally have their hands full in this road test. More of the same Sunday. PATRIOTS, 30-26.

CAROLINA AT ATLANTA. This one has upset written all over it, thus our Upset Special. PANTHERS, 27-24.

MINNESOTA AT DETROIT. Both were involved in upset outcomes last week. No such repeat Sunday. LIONS, 35-17.

SEATTLE AT ST. LOUIS. Seahawks living large following Monday night’s miracle outcome. It’s payback time this Sunday. RAMS, 23-16.

SAN DIEGO AT KANSAS CITY. Chargers pulled crash and burn against Atlanta while KC was surprising Saints. CHARGERS, 31-20.

TENNESSEE AT HOUSTON. Titans coming off wild overtime victory over Lions. But Houston’s on a mission this season. TEXANS, 38-17.

CINCINNATI AT JACKSONVILLE. Bungles impressed in nation’s capitol. That momentum should carry over. BENGALS, 21-17.

OAKLAND AT DENVER. Raiders’ win streak ends at one. BRONCOS, 34-14.

MIAMI AT ARIZONA. No one tabbed Cardinals for 3-0 start and they make it 4-0 this week. CARDINALS, 26-21.

WASHINGTON AT TAMPA BAY. Battle of 1-2 teams with RG3 prevailing in low-scoring encounter. REDSKINS. 20-13.

NEW ORLEANS AT GREEN BAY. Saints threatening 0-4 start while Pack must rebound from Monday night debacle. PACKERS, 33-26.

NEW YORK GIANTS AT PHILADELPHIA. NFC East rivals should light it up on national TV. GIANTS, 37-30.


CHICAGO AT DALLAS. Pair of 2-1 teams duke it out with defense ruling the night. COWBOYS, 17-13.


Gibson can be reached at rgibson@timesleaderonline.com