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Week 5: Ravens Vs. Bengals Preview, Where to Watch, Prediction

Baltimore Ravens play the Cincinnati Bengals in Week 5.

Week 5: Cincinnati Bengals at Baltimore Ravens 

Sunday, Oct. 9, 2022,  8:20 PM EST at M&T Bank Stadium

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Ravens are favored by 3.5 (SI Sportsbook)

How to Watch/Listen

Television: NBC Sunday Night Football / WBAL Ch. 11 (Baltimore)

Stream: Ravens Mobile app for iOS and Android; Ravens website

Local Radio: WBAL (1090 AM) & 98Rock (97.9 FM)

National Radio: Westwood One Sports

Mobile: Ravens website, Ravens Mobile app

Coverage Map: 506sports.com

Series History

The Ravens lead the all-time series against Cincinnati, 27-25, including a 17-9 mark in Baltimore. Under head coach John Harbaugh, the series is tied, 14-14, with the Ravens going 9-5 at M&T Bank Stadium. After sweeping the Bengals in 2019 and 2020, Cincinnati won both games in 2021.

By the Numbers

15.4 – An NFL-best punt-return average for Devin Duvernay, entering Week 5. Duvernay also owns the NFL's only kickoff return for a touchdown this season, a 103-yarder in Week 2 vs. Miami.

Notable

Lamar Jackson (3,989) is 11 yards shy of becoming the sixth quarterback in NFL history to reach 4,000 rushing yards in a career. With 11 yards more this Sunday night, he'd become the fastest QB to achieve the 4,000-yard milestone, doing so in his 63rd game. Michael Vick (87 games) is currently the fastest to reach the mark.

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2022 Rankings

Ravens: Total Offense: 12; Total Defense: 30

Bengals: Total Offense: 16; Total Defense: 11

Ravens Game Plan

Offense

The Ravens are the third highest-scoring team in the NFL, averaging 29.8 points per game. Offensive coordinator Greg Roman has put together a balanced offense that has kept teams on their heels, but last week in a 23-20 loss to the Bills, the Ravens were held scoreless in the second half.

Lamar Jackson is having an MVP-caliber season and has been effective in throwing downfield. He has completed 76 of 117 pass attempts for 893 yards with 11 touchdowns and four interceptions. Wide receiver Rashod Bateman (11 receptions, 243 yards) has struggled with dropped passes over the past two games and is out with a foot injury. Tight end Mark Andrews has caught a team-high 24 passes for 26- yards with three touchdowns, but the Bills managed to take him out of the game with double teams. Devin Duvernay has been a spark at wide receiver and on special teams, where he was a Pro Bowl returner last year. 

The Ravens' running game got a boost with the return of J.K. Dobbins. In addition, Justice Hill, who has been mired down the draft chart since being drafted in 2019, is emerging as a legitimate threat, but he injured his hamstring against the Bills and is out. Gus Edwards returned to practice this week after missing last season with a knee injury but he won't be ready for another week or two.

The Bengals have a mostly solid defense and are ranked fourth against the run, allowing 85.8 yards per game. Trey Hendrickson is a game-wrecker and has 2.5 sacks and B.J. Hill also has 1.5 sacks. Safety Vonn Bell has a team-high two interceptions.

Defense

The Ravens have been susceptible to big plays this season and the secondary has been especially vulnerable. This could be especially problematic against the Bengals, who like to attack with the deep ball.

Bengals quarterback Joe Burrow played two of his finest games against the Ravens, throwing for 941 yards with seven touchdowns last season. 

In the Week 16 game in Cincinnati, Burrow threw for a franchise-record 525 yards and four touchdowns. With a 20-point lead and two minutes remaining, Burrow threw a 52-yard pass to Joe Mixon.  Cincinnati aggressively attacked a depleted Baltimore team even when a 41-21 victory was all but secured.  Ja'Marr Chase finished with 8 catches for 201 yards with a long touchdown. This prompted former Ravens linebacker Bart Scott to say, the Bengals "won a lifetime career ass-kicking from the Baltimore Ravens." 

Cincinnati also beat the Ravens 41-17 in Week 7 at M&T Bank Stadium. 

The Bengals have struggled to protect Burrow, who has taken 16 sacks, tied for third in the NFL. The Ravens, however, have struggled with their pass rush. Linebacker Odafe Oweh managed his first sack last week and he needs to have more production. Outside linebacker Justin Houston has been ruled out so that hurts the pass rush. The secondary played better against the Bills, and the defensive backs need an even better performance this week against Cincinnati. 

Prediction

This is almost a must-win, Week 5 game for the Ravens, who have lost five straight games at home. The Ravens are 2-2 in the AFC, but this game would give the winning team at least a share of first place in the AFC North. The Bengals will be confident after blowing out the Ravens twice last year. Burrow particularly gets fired up for this matchup after some trash talk last season. The Ravens are the more desperate team and this time they finish the game. 

Ravens 27, Bengals 23