AFC North Buzz: Joe Burrow MVP talk, Steelers without top tight end; Ravens, Browns face tough battles

Around the AFC North, why Joe Burrow's MVP stock is plummeting, Steelers look to rookie tight end and the Baltimore Ravens and Cleveland Browns face tough Week 7 battles.
Seattle Seahawks v Cincinnati Bengals
Seattle Seahawks v Cincinnati Bengals / Michael Hickey/GettyImages
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AFC North star watch: Lamar Jackson a “nightmare” for the Detroit Lions

The Detroit Lions are on the rise in the NFL, but so are the Baltimore Ravens.  In what should shape up as one of the more exhilarating matchups in the NFL this week, can this Lions squad find a way to contain Lamar Jackson?

Well, if they do, they will have to overcome what Lions head coachDan Campbell described as a “nightmare”…Lamar Jackson that is.

“If I was dreaming about how to stop the [Ravens], Lamar is the first one I’d think of if I was coming out of a nightmare.  He is dangerous.  He is dangerous.

“They don’t ask him to do much as he did before with his legs, but there’s plenty of it still in there, and he’s throwing it pretty good.  They’ve made a concerted effort to do more dropback with him, and he is, he is throwing the ball well.”

Expect this to be one of those defensive slugfests as the Lions have proved they can be tough defensively.  The Ravens defense will be the Ravens defense and Jackson will make plays with his legs.

Baltimore Ravens QB Lamar Jackson
Baltimore Ravens v Tennessee Titans / Ryan Pierse/GettyImages

The real X factors in this game are the Ravens wide receivers.  Although rookie Zay Flowers and Nelson Agholor have made plays, the Ravens really must get Odell Beckham Jr. and Rashod Bateman going.  If they do, Baltimore will be a tough team to beat.

As far as the Ravens defense versus the Lions, Roquan Smith and the purple and black will have to put the pressure on Jared Goff and make him make decisions under pressure.  Should be a good one in Baltimore.