Ravens vs. Broncos: NFL Week 4 betting odds, preview, and pick
The Denver Broncos finally get to take a step up in class this Sunday when they welcome the Baltimore Ravens into the Mile High City for a matchup between two fringe AFC contenders.
The Ravens are 2-1 straight-up and 1-2 against the spread. Baltimore lost an exhilarating Monday Night Football season opener in dramatic fashion to the Las Vegas Raiders before rushing all over the Kansas City Chiefs and narrowly defeating the Detroit Lions thanks to a record-setting 66-yard field goal by Justin Tucker.
The Broncos, meanwhile, are 3-0 straight-up and against the spread. However, they've played their first three games against teams that now have a combined record of 0-9.
Let’s dive into the matchup, beginning with the latest betting odds.
Sun, October 3 2021, 8:25 PM
How much does schedule strength matter?
The biggest question that will decide the outcome in this game is whether the Broncos are legit, or if they’ve simply played the NFL’s version of cupcakes. The reality is that they've faced three of the worst quarterbacks in the NFL thus far in Daniel Jones, Trevor Lawrence, and Zach Wilson.
However, despite the competition (or lack thereof), the Broncos have played like true professionals, putting away each of their opponents with ease. Given the conviction of those wins, it does lend some credence to the idea that they have not only covered the spread, but have blown opponents away by simply being far better than anyone expected.
The Broncos are tied with the Ravens in rush yards surrendered per play, are first in the league in yards allowed per pass attempt, and are 10th in sack percentage. Offseason acquisitions Kyle Fuller and Patrick Surtain also appear to be an upgrade in the defensive backfield.
Denver is getting spectacular quarterback play as Teddy Bridgewater may need to legally change his name to "Teddy Covers Spreads." The Broncos are arguably the least quantifiable team in the league right now due to the aberration of their strength of schedule, but in Week 4 the minor league matchups will cease and we'll get to see how they match up against a quality opponent.
Ravens vs. Broncos Injury Report
|Baltimore Ravens||Denver Broncos|
WR Rashod Bateman: Questionable (groin)
WR KJ Hamler: Out (knee)
WR Miles Boykin: Questionable (hamstring)
LB Jonas Griffith: Out (hamstring)
LB Daelin Hayes: Out (ankle)
RB Mike Boone: Out (quadriceps)
OL Ronnie Stanley: Questionable (ankle)
OL Graham Glasgow: Questionable (knee)
DE Bradley Chubb: Out (ankle)
Ravens and Broncos Betting Trends
- The Ravens are 6-1 ATS in their last seven games as an underdog
- The Ravens are 8-3 ATS in their last 11 games
- The Ravens are 9-4 ATS in the last 13 head-to-head games
- Four of the last five Broncos games have gone Under the posted total
- Four of the last six head-to-head matchups between these teams have gone Over the posted total
Injuries will finally Catch up to the Broncos
The Broncos have enjoyed a weak strength of schedule to begin the season, but the cost has been high as multiple players are now facing injury concerns. Lingering issues to linemen Dalton Risner and Graham Glasgow are a concern, and playing without Bradley Chubb will decrease the toughness of their defensive line against a fantastic rushing attack.
But perhaps just as important as their lineman is the new addition to the injury report of KJ Hamler, an overlooked but electric playmaker on offense that joins Jerry Jeudy off the field. Bridgewater still has weapons and has proven he can make the best of what he’s given, but the Broncos' offense will be slowed down with their best receivers unavailable.
The Broncos are a good team, but they won’t have enough firepower on Sunday to give Bridgewater yet another win against the spread.
Score prediction: Ravens 24, Broncos 21