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NFL picks for Week 3: Ravens beat Chiefs; Bills topple Rams

Baltimore Ravens quarterback Lamar Jackson throws during a win over the Houston Texans.
Baltimore Ravens quarterback Lamar Jackson throws during a win over the Houston Texans in Week 2.
(Eric Christian Smith / Associated Press)
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The Times’ NFL writer, Sam Farmer, examines this week’s matchups. Lines according to Pregame.com (O/U = over/under). Last week’s record 16-0 (1.000); season 26-6 (.813).

Using point spreads with the scores Farmer predicted, the record against the spread last week would have been 9-7 (.563); season 17-15 (.531). Times are Pacific.

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Titans (2-0) at Vikings (0-2)

Minnesota Vikings running back Dalvin Cook carries the ball.
Minnesota Vikings running back Dalvin Cook.
(Michael Conroy / Associated Press)

Sunday, 10 a.m.

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TV: None. DirecTV: 705.

Line: Titans by 21/2. O/U: 491/2.

The Vikings are at home, but they look lifeless. They need to get the job done on the ground, so it could be a big day for Dalvin Cook, but Titans get it done with dangerous mix of pass and run.

Predictions: Titans 27, Vikings 23

3

Raiders (2-0) at Patriots (1-1)

Las Vegas Raiders quarterback Derek Carr #4 celebrates with wide receivers Henry Ruggs III.
Las Vegas Raiders quarterback Derek Carr celebrates with teammates during Monday’s win over the Saints.
(Jeff Bottari / Associated Press)

Sunday, 10 a.m.

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TV: None. DirecTV: 706.

Line: Patriots by 5. O/U: 471/2.

Derek Carr is playing great, and Raiders have a strong ground game. Still, it’s tough to travel to Foxborough and win, and Las Vegas has put enough on tape for Bill Belichick to devise a plan.

Prediction: Patriots 28, Raiders 24

4

Bengals (0-2) at Eagles (0-2)

Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Carson Wentz.
(Chris Szagola / Associated Press)

Sunday, 10 a.m.

TV: None. DirecTV: 707.

Line: Eagles by 41/2. O/U: 461/2.

In this matchup of the winless, Philadelphia takes advantage of a bad Cincinnati defense with Carson Wentz getting on track and Miles Sanders controlling the tempo on the ground.

Prediction: Eagles 27, Bengals 23

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5

Texans (0-2) at Steelers (2-0)

Houston Texans quarterback Deshaun Watson.
(David J. Phillip / Associated Press)

Sunday, 10 a.m.

TV: None. DirecTV: 708.

Line: Steelers by 4. O/U: 45.

With that Pittsburgh pass rush, and a porous Texans line, Deshaun Watson will be under heavy pressure. Ben Roethlisberger is still knocking the rust off but has made some pretty throws.

Prediction: Steelers 28, Texans 21

6

Bears (2-0) at Falcons (0-2)

Atlanta Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan passes.
Atlanta Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan.
(Michael Ainsworth / Associated Press)

Sunday, 10 a.m.

TV: None. DirecTV: 709.

Line: Falcons by 3. O/U: 47.

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Putting up yards and points is no problem for Matt Ryan and the Atlanta offense. It’s a shaky defense that hurts. They’re not terrible against the run, though, and Mitch Trubisky is no gunslinger.

Prediction: Falcons 31, Bears 24

7

Rams (2-0) at Bills (2-0)

Rams quarterback Jared Goff goes back to pass.
Rams quarterback Jared Goff.
(Chris Szagola / Associated Press)

Sunday, 10 a.m.

TV: Channel 11. DirecTV: 710.

Line: Bills by 21/2. O/U: 47.

If Jalen Ramsey cancels Stefon Diggs, Josh Allen will have to go elsewhere — and he has other receivers who can get it done. Both these teams are legit, and this could be the best game of the day.

Prediction: Bills 23, Rams 20

8

Washington (1-1) at Browns (1-1)

Cleveland Browns quarterback Baker Mayfield scrambles.
Cleveland Browns quarterback Baker Mayfield.
(Ron Schwane / Associated Press)

Sunday, 10 a.m.

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TV: None. DirecTV: 711.

Line: Browns by 7. O/U: 45.

Washington has a robust pass rush, but is vulnerable to getting trampled. That’s where Nick Chubb and Kareem Hunt come in. The Browns use their ground game to keep Baker Mayfield upright.

Prediction: Browns 24, Washington 14

9

49ers (1-1) at Giants (0-2)

New York Giants quarterback Daniel Jones looks to pass.
New York Giants quarterback Daniel Jones.
(Kamil Krzaczynski / Associated Press)

Sunday, 10 a.m.

TV: None. DirecTV: 712.

Line: 49ers by 4. O/U: 41.

With Jimmy Garoppolo and George Kittle hobbled, and D-line devastated by season-ending injuries, the 49ers are in trouble. Still, Daniel Jones needs to get the ball out quick with that flimsy line.

Prediction: Giants 24, 49ers 21

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10

Jets (0-2) at Colts (1-1)

New York Jets quarterback Sam Darnold scrambles.
New York Jets quarterback Sam Darnold.
(Bill Kostroun / Associated Press)

Sunday, 1:05 pm.

TV: None. DirecTV: 713.

Line: Colts by 111/2. O/U: 44.

Jets are lousy across the board on offense, and they’re facing a Colts defense that had a confidence boost against the listless Vikings last week. Door is open for a big day by Philip Rivers.

Prediction: Colts 28, Jets 13

11

Panthers (0-2) at Chargers (1-1)

Chargers coach Anthony Lynn stands with his players.
Chargers coach Anthony Lynn.
(Robert Gauthier/Los Angeles Times)

Sunday, 1:05 p.m.

TV: Channel 2. DirecTV: 714.

Line: Chargers by 61/2. O/U: 431/2.

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Take Christian McCaffrey out of mix and the Panthers aren’t the same team. Plus the Chargers are stout against the run. Chargers likely to pound the run to make life easier against a tough secondary.

Prediction: Chargers 24, Panthers 20

12

Lions (0-2) at Cardinals (2-0)

Arizona Cardinals quarterback Kyler Murray passes.
Arizona Cardinals quarterback Kyler Murray.
(Ross D. Franklin / Associated Press)

Sunday, 1:25 p.m.

TV: None. DirecTV: 715.

Line: Cardinals by 51/2. O/U: 551/2.

After getting trampled by Aaron Jones, Lions must corral Kyler Murray and Kenyan Drake. Arizona’s offense is rolling and suspect defense is doing enough. Matt Stafford always keeps it interesting.

Prediction: Cardinals 28, Lions 24

13

Buccaneers (1-1) at Broncos (0-2)

Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Tom Brady looks to pass.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Tom Brady.
(Mark LoMoglio / Associated Press)

Sunday, 1:25 p.m.

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TV: None. DirecTV: 716.

Line: Buccaneers by 6. O/U: 43.

The Broncos are banged up, and they’re going to have a hard time slowing an improving Buccaneers offense. Jeff Driskel will put up decent numbers, but he’s not beating Tom Brady.

Prediction: Buccaneers 31, Broncos 18

14

Cowboys (1-1) at Seahawks (2-0)

Dallas Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott warms up.
Dallas Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott.
(Michael Ainsworth / Associated Press)

Sunday, 1:25 p.m.

TV: Channel 11. DirecTV: 717.

Line: Seahawks by 5. O/U: 56.

Seattle’s run defense has been swarming, and needs to be against Dallas. Its pass defense is vulnerable, though, and Dak Prescott can roll up the yards. This comes down to red-hot Russell Wilson.

Prediction: Seahawks 34, Cowboys 28

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15

Packers (2-0) at Saints (1-1)

Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers scrambles.
Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers.
(Morry Gash / Associated Press)

Sunday, 5:20 p.m.

TV: Channel 4.

Line: Saints by 3. O/U: 521/2.

Showdown between two legendary quarterbacks could come down to who has better run game. Green Bay’s Aaron Jones and New Orleans’ Alvin Kamara will play big roles in the outcome.

Prediction: Packers 28, Saints 27

16

Chiefs (2-0) at Ravens (2-0)

Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes throws a pass.
Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes.
(Kyusung Gong / Associated Press)

Monday, 5:15 p.m.

TV: ESPN.

Line: Ravens by 31/2. O/U: 541/2.

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Patrick Mahomes is phenomenal, as is tight end Travis Kelce, but the other receivers aren’t pulling their weight. Baltimore is already at a comfy cruising altitude and is really tough at home.

Prediction: Ravens 34, Chiefs 28