A roundup of NFL experts' picks for Sunday's game between the Ravens and Cincinnati Bengals.
* Pete Prisco of CBSSports.com predicts the Ravens will lose to the Bengals, 24-17.
The Bengals have a chance to get to the second seed if the Bills beat the Patriots. That means they will play hard. And wouldn't they like to knock their division rival out of the playoffs? The Ravens were awful last week against the Patriots. Can they bounce back? Not in this stadium where the Bengals are 7-0.
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* John Breech at CBSSports.com is also picking the Bengals to win, 24-20.
Here's a list of the quarterbacks in the NFL who have thrown more touchdown passes than Andy Dalton this season: Peyton Manning, Drew Brees. That's it. That's the entire list. Dalton has thrown 18 of those touchdown passes at home, which is as many as Joe Flacco has thrown the entire season. I think where I'm going with this is that Dalton almost always plays well at home, he's playing at home and the Bengals are undefeated at home.
* Of CBSSports.com's eight NFL experts making picks, only Jason La Canfora picks the Ravens.
* Elliot Harrison at NFL.com picks the Bengals to win, 24-17.
We heard that some in the Ravens organization thought the Steelers would beat the Bengals and Baltimore would win out to take the AFC North. Well, the first part happened, at least. Now, unlike last year's version, this Week 17 matchup between the Ravens and Bengals actually means something. Cincinnati is playing for the AFC's No. 2 seed while Baltimore simply is trying to get into the postseason dance in the first place. For that to happen, the Ravens must be able to get their passing game going against the Bengals -- something Matt Cassel and the Vikings couldn't do in Cincinnati last Sunday. Unfortunately, the Ravens' lack of a run game will hurt them on the road; pounding an opponent via a good ground attack is a phenomenal way to shut up a home crowd. We're ... gulp ... putting our faith in the Bengals. Let's hope the Gruden mystique (mistakes) doesn't make us regret that.
* Pro Football Talk picks the Bengals to win, 24-14.
The Ravens suffered a huge letdown last week against the Patriots, and I see the defending champions’ season ending on Sunday in Cincinnati.
* For Showtime's Inside the NFL, Cris Collinsworth and guest host Chris Doleman pick the Bengals, while Phil Simms abstains.
NFL rankings roundup
* CBSSports.com's Pete Prisco kept the Ravens at No. 12 despite their 41-7 loss to the New England Patriots.
What happened against the Patriots? Now they have to win to have a playoff chance.
* FoxSports.com's Brian Billick lowered his former team by two spots, to No. 13.
The Ravens have now scored just one touchdown in the past two games. I've been there before! * Pro
* Football Talk dropped the Ravens four spots, to No. 12.
* ESPN.com moved the Ravens down two spots, to No. 14.
The Ravens badly needed a win in Week 16 to help their playoff hopes. Instead, they lost by 34, their worst loss of the Joe Flacco-John Harbaugh era.
* Elliot Harrison at NFL.com moves the Ravens down one spot, to No. 15.
Huge loss in Baltimore, in terms of both the scoreboard and the standings. Now the Ravens have their work cut out for them with a road date in Cincinnati. The Bengals will play for a playoff bye, and -- with the Patriots squaring off against the Bills at the same time -- will not know whether they can rest players. Thus, this Week 17 contest should be an honest one. Oh, by the way, are the Ravens allergic to gaining more than 4 yards per carry?