Street Talk BOLD PREDICTIONS: Ravens @ Saints

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The Ravens go into the Big Easy and play the role of gracious guests as they hand the New Orleans Saints a big easy victory! Jimmy Graham scores two touchdowns and has 1o0+ yards receiving while Drew Brees chucks it for over 300 yards and 3 TDs in a 38-23 winning effort. ~Tony Lombardi

Re-energized and focused after their week off, the Ravens continue their impressive streak of besting Drew Brees and company. Forsett scampers for 110 yards and two touchdowns, Bernard Pierce gets another and Steve Smith Sr adds to his touchdown total making it 11 against the Saints for his career. The defense will have its hands full containing Brees but his depleted arsenal of weapons is the deciding factor. Ravens win 28-21. ~ Brian Bower

I’m optimistic about the Ravens reaching the playoffs, but less so about Monday Night. Obviously the 4-6 Saints are not a powerhouse; and their home losses the last two weeks vs. SF & the Bengals reduces some of the Superdome mystique. Couple that with the losses of Cooks, and Rafael Bush (plus the Ravens having had the bye to get healthier and prepare) and you have logical reasons to think Baltimore could get the road win. Ultimately though, I’ll lean to Brees being able to rally their troops in prime time. If the Ravens return to Baltimore with the win; they will be in a pretty strong position for the stretch. – Chris Stoner

The Ravens come out of the bye fresh and rejuvenated, and jump out to a 10-point lead at the site of their most recent Super Bowl victory. Ngata, Jernigan, McPhee, and Williams collapse Drew Brees’ pocket all night, making him uncomfortable and ineffective. A late Jimmy Graham touchdown catch makes things interesting, but the Ravens hold on for a close victory, 27-24. – Derek Arnold

I watched a lot of the Bengals-Saints game last week, and the Saints just aren’t a very good football team. Drew Brees throws at least 2 interceptions trying to force the ball downfield. One of the interceptions will be intended for Jimmy Graham. The Ravens win by a 7+ point margin. ~Tyler Lombardi

Coming off a bye against a struggling Saints team would lead to the conventional thought of the Ravens being able to win with ease. However, Baltimore simply underperforms in the road in prime time football under John Harbaugh. With it hard to picture New Orleans losing three straight, the Saints offense rolls with 31 points and over 400 yards in a 31-17 win. Joe Flacco passes for over 250 yards and records a TD, but two turnovers will prove to be costly. ~ Kyle Casey

Unfortunately, this game is really poorly timed for the Ravens.  While the Saints are not the team they used to be, they are still dangerous and not likely to lose 3 straight at home.  The Ravens offense plays well, but Drew Brees is just a little better – Saints 34-31. ~ Brian McFarland

The way the Ravens’ overhauled secondary played against the Titans showed some promise, but that was against Zach Mettenberger. Yes the Saints are struggling but the Ravens won’t be able to keep up with Drew Brees and the Saints passing attack, even with their best wideout Brandin Cooks out for the year. The Ravens will be able to contain Jimmy Graham but Marques Colston and Kenny Stills will both have over 100 yards and a touchdown. The Ravens are 1-4 when their opponent scores more than 20 points; after Monday they’ll be 1-5. Saints 28 Ravens 17 ~ Ryan Jones

If the Ravens want to be successful Monday night, they will need to keep the Saints offense on the sideline for as long as possible. That means the Ravens will need to convert on 3rd downs and they will need to move the ball downfield. The best way to do that is to run the ball down the Saints throat. Justin Forsett leads the Ravens ground game which ranks 10th in the NFL on the ground with 124.1 yards per game. The Saints run defense ranks 19th, allowing 114.7 yards per game on the ground. The Ravens need to let the ground game dictate the pace of play and if they stick with it, they should be successful. The defense comes up with 2 turnovers in a Ravens victory, 34-27. ~ Joe Polek

After 15 days off, I think the Ravens look sharp and move the ball early, but are forced to settle for field goals as the Saints defense anchors in the red zone. That comes back to haunt Baltimore, as New Orleans (and its fans) get amped up in the second half.
Jimmy Graham and Mark Ingram combine for 300 yards and 3 TD, and Baltimore’s inability to covert promising drives into touchdowns in their undoing. The Ravens lose a close one to the Saints, 30-26. ~ Mike Fast

The Ravens return to the scene of their last Super Bowl triumph rested, relatively healthy, and looking to keep up with the idle Steelers. I’m not sure how to call this game; if the Super Bowl-winning defensive backfield were still patrolling the lanes this would be a no-brainer. But instead we have no Jimmy Smith, a brand new safety corps, and a diminished Lardarius Webb. I fear that Drew Brees and Jimmy Graham will feast on this work in progress. The only way for the Ravens to see this through is to keep the ball out of Brees’ hands. That’s easier said than done. Joe Flacco and the boys will put up some big points, but the Saints will put up a few more. In a high scoring affair, Saints 38, Ravens 34. ~ Fran “The Fan” Vojik

* The Ravens will bat down at least 1 pass to stall a drive or create a turnover.
*  The fans screaming “O” will be very audible during the National anthem.
*  The Ravens will rush the ball at least 28 times.
*  Joe Flacco will not be the last Raven to touch the football on any turnover. ~ Ken McKusick

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Derek Arnold

About Derek Arnold

RSR/ESR Senior Editor. Derek is originally from and a current resident of Pasadena, MD. He’s a graduate of UMBC and has been a lifelong Baltimore sports fan. In 2007 he founded B’More Birds’ Nest, where he wrote about the Ravens and Orioles before joining RSR in 2012. Derek tells anybody who asks that he has the best job in the world.
Follow Derek on Twitter: @BMoreBirdsNest 

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