NFL Game of the Week: Baltimore Ravens vs. Kansas City Chiefs
Week 3 of the NFL season has a great slate of games to look forward to, and the most eye-catching of all will kickoff at 1 p.m., as the Baltimore Ravens (2-0) travel to Arrowhead Stadium to play the Kansas City Chiefs (2-0) on CBS. These two teams met last season in Week 14, and the Chiefs prevailed 27-24 in overtime.
The story for the Ravens throughout the first two games of the season has been the play of second-year quarterback Lamar Jackson. The Louisville product has thrown for 596 yards and seven touchdowns without throwing a single interception in the first two weeks of his 2019 campaign.
The same can be said for last year's Most Valuable Player Patrick Mahomes. Mahomes picked up right where he left off in 2018. In the first two games of 2019, Mahomes has already collected 821 yards and seven touchdowns. Last week against the Oakland Raiders, the gunslinger threw for 313 yards and four touchdowns in the first half alone.
Both Baltimore and Kansas City have had a pretty smooth road thus far to start the year. The Ravens demolished the Miami Dolphins 59-10 in Week 1 and followed that with a hard-fought 23-17 victory over the Arizona Cardinals in their home opener. The Chiefs have opened on the road to start the season, but that hasn't stopped the juggernaut offense. Kansas City thumped the Jacksonville Jaguars 40-26 in the opener and was in total control last week in the 28-10 win over the Raiders.
This game will be a big test for defensive coordinator Don Martindale and the Ravens defense. Although the defense has played extraordinarily well to start the season, it’s facing arguably the best offense in the entire NFL in Week 3. Baltimore needs to limit Kansas City's severe threats on the outside, and the defense needs to do its best to get off the field on third down in order to give Baltimore a chance at picking up the upset win on the road.
It will be a test for the Chiefs as well on the defensive side of the ball. Baltimore has rushed for 223.5 yards per game and is ranked first in total offense with 541.5 yards per game. This is a Chiefs defense that finished 31st in 2018 and has a lot to prove against the Ravens’ balanced attack.
After last year's overtime thriller, it's expected that this one will go right down to the wire as well. We all know the quarterback matchup is intriguing, and that both offenses look sharp, but the difference in the game will be on the defensive side of the ball. It's Kansas City's first home game of the season, so the crowd will be rocking, and head coach Andy Reid's guys will be ready to play.
Prediction: Kansas City 28, Baltimore 23
Matthew McClure is a senior majoring in broadcast journalism. To contact him, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
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