Fearless Friday Forecast: Week 3 picks

September, 21, 2012
9/21/12
12:29
PM ET
Here are my predictions for the Week 3 games involving AFC North teams:

Buffalo Bills 20, Cleveland Browns 13: The Browns will have trouble keeping an underrated Bills front four away from rookie quarterback Brandon Weeden, who threw three turnovers when pressured in the season opener. The bigger mismatch is the Cleveland defense against Bills running back C.J. Spiller. Cleveland's run defense, which has done well so far, will struggle to contain the NFL's leading rusher.

Cincinnati Bengals 24, Washington Redskins 16: The Bengals defense isn't as bad as it has looked the first two games. With Carlos Dunlap expected to return, the Bengals will get pressure on Robert Griffin III and force a couple of turnovers out of him. This is the home opener for Washington, but the Redskins have lost six straight home games, the longest active streak in the NFL.

Pittsburgh Steelers 17, Oakland Raiders 13: This will be closer than what many expect. The Steelers haven't played well when traveling out West, losing three of their four trips there. Take a look at last season: Pittsburgh struggled in a win at Arizona before losing at San Francisco and Denver. The Steelers then began this season with a loss at Denver. But the Steelers will survive this time, thanks to a mistake by a familiar quarterback, Carson Palmer.

New England Patriots 30, Baltimore Ravens 23: Everything screams for a Ravens victory. Baltimore has won 13 times following a loss, the longest active streak in the NFL. The Ravens have won a franchise-record 11 home games in a row, which is also the longest active streak in the league. But the Ravens defense is vulnerable this season. A pass defense that gave up 371 yards passing last Sunday against Michael Vick faces a bigger challenge in Tom Brady, who is 4-0 against the Ravens in the regular season.

Last week's recap: 2-1. Season record: 2-1.

Bengals 34, Browns 27 (prediction: Bengals 24, Browns 13)

Eagles 24, Ravens 23 (prediction: Ravens 30, Eagles 27)

Steelers 27, Jets 10 (prediction: Steelers 20, Jets 10)

Jamison Hensley

ESPN Ravens reporter

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