Ravens-Texans predictions roundup for divisional playoff matchup

Most NFL pundits are picking the Ravens to beat the Houston Texans in the divisional round of the AFC playoffs on Saturday afternoon at 4:30 at M&T Bank Stadium.

Here is a roundup


Analysis: “The Ravens were knocked out of the playoffs the last time they were the No. 1 seed in 2019. There is a much different vibe around this year’s team. [Quarterback Lamar] Jackson has gone 1-3 in the postseason and he’s determined to make a statement this time around. Jackson is 17-1 — regular season and playoffs — when favored by 9 or more points. The Texans were impressive in their victory over the Browns — dominating on both sides of the ball — but they will find a more daunting challenge on the road against Baltimore.”
Prediction: Ravens 30, Texans 16


Analysis: “Maybe C.J. Stroud is on the type of heater that makes some of the conventional wisdom/metrics obsolete. I’m one more Texans win away from feeling confident we’ve reached that place, and maybe I’ll be late to the party. For now, though, I’ll say the phenom will meet his match in Baltimore. … The bigger difference is Houston will be on the road on Saturday and its defense will be lining up across from the likely league MVP instead of on-his-last-legs Joe Flacco. After three weeks of rest, Lamar Jackson outduels his young counterpart and slays the Divisional Round demons that have haunted him for years.” — Dan Graziano
Prediction: Ravens 26, Texans 20

USA Today

Analysis: “Aside from the Week 18 loss to Pittsburgh when the majority of starters didn’t play, Baltimore has mostly been unstoppable at home, averaging 34.6 points per game at M&T Bank Stadium in its first eight home games. Unlike most opponents, Houston is a much different team from when it played the Ravens in Week 1, so it won’t get blown out, but it’ll be a tough task to keep up with Lamar Jackson and company. The Texans started the season with a loss at Baltimore, and it’ll end with a loss at Baltimore.” — Jordan Mendoza
Prediction: Ravens 30, Texans 20

Baltimore Sun

Analysis: “Both teams are drastically different from the first time they met in Week 1, so forget just about everything from that game. … If Houston can force an early turnover or two and control the clock with the running game, things could get uncomfortable for the Ravens. But the more likely scenario is for Baltimore to do what it has done all season: harass Stroud, get out in front and lean on its defense and ground game to close it out.” — Brian Wacker
Prediction: Ravens 27, Texans 17

Sporting News

Analysis: “C.J. Stroud and the Texans are benefiting from well-schemed 49ers-mirroring offense with lesser weapons. A similar thing is happening for DeMeco Ryans as the rookie leader of the defense with another high-drafted rookie, Will Anderson Jr., leading the way. … Lamar Jackson, however, makes the big difference by being sharp passing all over the field and finding holes in the Texans zone. He also can elude pressure with bursts downfield to boost a limited traditional running game. In the end, Stroud will face plenty of the Ravens’ pass rush, led by former Texan Jadeveon Clowney, to close the door late.”
Prediction: Ravens 27, Texans 20

Arizona Republic

Analysis: “The Texans looked really good at home in the Wild Card Round, but playing outside at M&T Bank Stadium in Baltimore will be a much more difficult task. C.J. Stroud and Houston will put up some points but won’t be able to keep up with Lamar Jackson and Baltimore.”
Prediction: Ravens 27, Texans 20


Analysis: “One frustrating postseason streak will come to an end. Ravens quarterback Lamar Jackson is 0-2 in the divisional round, throwing one touchdown pass and three interceptions. But the Texans are 0-4 in the divisional round, losing by an average of 14.5 points.”
Moody’s pick: Ravens 37, Texans 24
Walder’s pick: Ravens 27, Texans 20

CBS Sports 

Analysis: “Baltimore won the first matchup between these teams rather handily, and while the Texans are a lot better now than they were then, the Ravens still have advantages on both sides of the ball and are healthy, rested, and playing at home. Houston has an incredibly bright future, but it’s not quite enough to compete with the Ravens’ present.
Prediction: Ravens 26, Texans 17

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