This week the Baltimore Ravens will travel to Massachusetts to take on the New England Patriots. The winner of this game will represent the AFC in Super Bowl XLVII. With great side stories to include the Patriots dynasty and the legacy of Ray Lewis, here are 5 bold predictions for the AFC Championship game. Wanna Bet On the AFC Championship Game? Click here for a $50 – $1000 free play!
Patriots Pour It On
Patriots Win by More than 20 points: Our full in-depth preview of the AFC Championship game breaks down the game with more detail, but the Patriots will absolutely dominate the Ravens. Tom Brady and the Patriots are on a different level than the Ravens and any other team in the NFL for that matter. Bill Belichick has a defensive plan that will stifle the Ravens and Brady would love to run it up on the loud Ravens.
Ray Lewis Coming Back?
Ray Lewis will un-retire: The 2013 NFL playoff run by the Baltimore Ravens has been fueled by the retirement announcement of Ray Lewis. Lewis has inspired and motivated his teammates and seemingly wiled them to win. This run has made the Ravens seem like they are a team of destiny. However, a blowout loss in the AFC Championship game will leave a bitter taste in his mouth. It may not happen after the game, but the loss will give Lewis the reason he needs to return next year.
Ray Rice Will be Cooked
Ray Rice will rush for less than 50 yards: This may not seem like a stretch as the Patriots shut down Rice in this same game a year ago. Rice was held to 67 yards on 21 carries, which amounts to a 3.2-yard average. Belichick loves to take away the key player n offense and that type of attention will stymie the Ravens runner.
Not Missing Rob Gronkowski
Aaron Hernandez Will have over 100 yards and 2 touchdowns: With tight end Rob Gronkowski out with an injury the Patriots will be missing a key component to this high powered offense. Luckily for the Patriots they have plenty of weapons to take his place. Brady will look to exploit the aging linebacker core with quick slants and deep middle routes to his crafty tight end. Hernnadez is a nightmare matchup for any team in the NFL and he will thrive in this big game.
Patriots Defense Main Target? Joe Flacco
Joe Flacco is sacked six times: Since acquiring Aqib Talib the Patriots have opened up the pass rush by blitzing more often. That spells trouble for a Ravens offensive line that allowed 35 sacks in the regular season. Baltimore’s front five would seem to be vulnerable. Left guard Jah Reid’s season-ending toe injury not only forced aging Bryant McKinnie back into the lineup but caused the team to move Michael Oher from left tackle to the right side while shifting rookie right tackle Kelechi Osemele into Reid’s spot. Vince Wilfork is a monster inside that will demand double coverage and that will open up the blitzing lanes which will translate to pressure all game long for the Patriots.
The AFC Championship has a chance to be one of the best games on the schedule for Sunday, but when all is said and done, the Patriots will be on the dominating end of a blowout victory.
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