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Key Fantasy Matchups for Sunday’s Ravens-Colts Matchup


Ravens RBs Willis McGahee and Le’Ron McClain vs. Colts run defense

The Ravens are fourth in the NFL at 153.8 yards rushing per game, but more importantly, they commit to the run and pound it. They have 160 carries. Consider that the Colts have just 75. The Colts are the NFL’s worst at stopping the run at 188.5 yards allowed per game. McClain is a bruising second-year fullback type who leads the team with 266 yards on 63 carries, a 4.2-yard average and four touchdowns. The oft-injured McGahee (knee) has 170 yards on 50 carries but has trouble finishing games because he always gets nicked up. The Colts struggle to tackle, and their smallish front is shoved around a lot.

Ravens TE Todd Heap vs. Colts linebackers

Heap had more catches last game (four) than he did in his first three games combined (three). There is no sign that Heap will become an integral part of the passing game any time soon, though. He is still being utilized as a blocker for half of the Ravens’ pass plays. Plus, Heap has never been an impact player against the Colts. In four regular season games against Indianapolis, Heap has averaged 2.75 receptions and 35.8 yards; he has one touchdown against them.

Colts QB Peyton Manning vs. Ravens pass defense

Two of the best to play their position square off in what linebacker Ray Lewis referred to as a “chess match.” Manning was sharp at the start of the Houston Texans game, but then he wasn’t the same until the end, when the Colts rallied with 21 points in the final 2:10 for the stunning victory. Baltimore has allowed 13 points or less in three of four games. Lewis is still the man with a team-high 42 tackles on the NFL’s No. 1 defense. The Ravens rank first against the pass this season, but this is deceiving because this secondary is banged up. Cornerback Samari Rolle is out with a shoulder injury, and his replacement, Fabian Washington, is nursing a shoulder injury. Manning will try to check to runs when Lewis and his mates give certain looks; however, Lewis and defensive coordinator Rex Ryan are sure to bluff a bit, switch into other looks and try to blitz Manning when he’s not expecting it. Teams have had success against the Colts when they crowd the box because Manning has missed on those deep throws, which are needed to back the blitzers off. Manning is one of the few quarterbacks to have had success against the Ravens, though. In six games against the Ravens, he has thrown 13 touchdown passes and averaged 283 yards passing.

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