OWINGS MILLS - Across the board, this is a matchup that favors the Ravens, at least on paper.
The Buffalo Bills have struggled at times offensively. They've struggled even more defensively. And some of their key players are dealing with injuries.
The Bills do have some talented players - defensive end Mario Williams, running back C.J. Spiller, wide receiver Stevie Johnson, left tackle Cordy Glenn and defensive tackle Kyle Williams.
As Baltimore coach John Harbaugh said of Buffalo earlier this week.
"They play hard, and they've got some playmakers."
That said, this appears to be an advantageous matchup for the Ravens, especially for the offense.
The Bills have had success as a pass rush, but their defense has been one of the worst against the run and they could be without three of their top four cornerbacks today, including both starters. They are also likely to be without Pro Bowl free safety Jairus Byrd, who is yet to play this season because of a foot injury.
The Ravens have had issues offensively in each of their first three games, especially during the first half, but the offense scored two touchdowns during the second half of Baltimore's win against the Cleveland Browns in Week 2, 13 points during the second half last week against the Houston Texans and will be facing a Buffalo defense that allowed 513 yards and 27 points to the New York Jets last week.
The Jets are considered one of the worst offenses in the league, but rookie quarterback Geno Smith threw for 331 yards and two touchdowns versus the banged up Bills secondary and unheralded running back Bilal Powell exploited Buffalo's rush defense for 149 yards on 27 carries.
The Bills limited Carolina Panthers running back DeAngelo Williams to just 85 yards on 22 carries in Week 2, but they gave up 158 yards on the ground to the New England Patriots in Week 1 and had problems stopping Powell last week.
"They definitely have a talented defense, but their linebackers aren't as downhill as some other team's linebackers are," Ravens running back Bernard Pierce said, "so creases and holes tend to pop open a little quicker."
As for Buffalo's pass defense, the Bills could go into today's game with Justin Rogers, Aaron Williams and Brandon Burton as their top three cornerbacks if injured starter Leodis McKelvin doesn't end up playing.
Rogers is a former seventh-round pick who was beaten for two long touchdowns against the Jets - one of 51 yards and another of 69 yards during the fourth quarter that proved to be the difference in the game.
Williams entered the league as a cornerback but struggled during his first two seasons and is now the starting strong safety.
Burton was picked up through waivers earlier this week, and he's seen only minimal action during his three years in the NFL.
"We want to start fast," Baltimore tight end Ed Dickson said. "We don't want to wait until the second half to get things started. We want to get going and stay on top of them by doing the things that we do well, and that starts with a strong running game."
As far as Buffalo's offense, it's built around the running game and has two talented running backs in Spiller and Jackson. But while the Bills are fifth in rushing offense, Buffalo has actually struggled run the ball with the exception of two long runs and will face a defense that's been one of the league's best against the run.
The Ravens are allowing just 3.4 yards per carry, which is seventh-best in the NFL.
Spiller was a Pro Bowler last year and is one of the league's most dangerous offensive playmakers. But excluding those two long runs - one by him and one by Jackson - he and Jackson are collectively averaging just three yards per carry.
Meanwhile, rookie quarterback E.J. Manuel has received praise from Baltimore for his play through the Bills' first three games, and Johnson is one of the better wide receivers in the AFC, but Manuel had the worst showing of his young career against the Jets last week.
He threw for 243 yards, but he completed just 19 of his 42 pass attempts.
All in all, this looks like a favorable matchup for Baltimore, but Buffalo does have some talented players and Harbaugh as well as several players referred to the Bills' Ralph Wilson Stadium as a tough place to play.
"No matter who we're playing against, no matter what the stats say, we've just got to worry about us with the places that we want to go and [the things] we want to do," Ravens fullback Vonta Leach said. "We just want to get better and better each week."