Colts vs. Ravens: Staff picks and predictions for Week 5

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The Indianapolis Colts (1-3) will be on the road for a third consecutive game when they visit the Baltimore Ravens (3-1) at M&T Bank Stadium on Monday night.

It isn’t shaping up to be a matchup in which the Colts are favored by many. The experts around the league are siding heavily with the Ravens coming out with a win while Vegas has the Colts sitting as 6.5-point underdogs.

Here’s how the Colts Wire staff predicts the prime-time game will go on Monday night:

Kevin Hickey (@KevinHickey11): Ravens 30, Colts 23

There is a lot going against the Colts in this one, and it may be too much to overcome against a Ravens team that is 14-1 in their last 15 prime-time games.

The injuries continue to be an issue as the Colts will be without four starters in Quenton Nelson, Braden Smith, Kwity Paye and Rock Ya-Sin. Losing Nelson and Smith will be huge against a Ravens defense that creatively finds ways to pressure the quarterback with complex blitzing schemes.

Meanwhile, the defense hasn’t been able to play up to its competition this season. An inconsistent pass rush will help Lamar Jackson as he’s thrown deep more than he has in his career. The secondary hasn’t been playing well, and the Ravens run game is always a threat.

Given the injuries and poor play on both sides of the ball against elite competition, this isn’t a game the Colts should be expected to win.

Cody Manning (@CodyTalksNFL): Ravens 27, Colts 24

The odds are stacked against the Colts on Monday night as they will be missing at least three starters. The liability at the right tackle spot shows up at times throughout the night and Carson Wentz has to avoid pressure and attempt to make magic on his healed ankles. It disrupts the offense but they put it together to have a strong second-half performance to give the team a shot to win it in the fourth quarter. The defense plays well for majority of the game, keeping the rushing attack in check, but get beat on some throws from Lamar Jackson on a few drives that lead to touchdowns. Including the Ravens final drive of the game to put them in field goal position to have Justin Tuck to give them another game-winning field goal, Baltimore squeaks by Indianapolis

John Alfieri (@alfierijohn): Ravens 35, Colts 14

While Frank Reich’s team is riding high after a dominant performance against Miami, this is the week the Colts will be brought back down to Earth. The Ravens are among the NFL’s elite teams and they perform exceptionally in all three phases of the game.

As we saw last year, Lamar Jackson is a problem for the Colts. He is a threat in the pass and run game, and the Colts will have their hands full trying to contain the former MVP. Darius Leonard will have his hands full as the X factor in this one.

This will likely be a defensive battle in the first half, with both teams struggling on offense fo start. In the end it will be Baltimore who pulls away and gets the victory, leaving the Colts at a crossroads and a 1-4 record.

Nick Melillo (@CircleCity21): Colts 31, Ravens 24

I’m picking the Colts for a primetime upset. Expect a heavy dose of Taylor and Hines in this game and whoever has more success on the ground will win. Containing Lamar and that Ravens offense will not be easy but I think this defense is up to the task after a much-needed win.

Standings

1. John (3-1)
2. Kevin (2-2)
3. Cody (2-2)
4. Nick (0-4)

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