The Ravens have been one of the better teams in the AFC for the last three seasons and this season look to reverse the trend of early playoff exits.
Odds to win the Super Bowl: +1400
Odds to win the AFC: +650
Odds to win the AFC North: +115
Last season the Ravens were 11-5 and won the AFC North. While they did not advance to the AFC title game, they did win their first game, which was their first with Lamar Jackson under center.
Jackson only passed for 2,757 yards last season but had 26 TD and nine INT and also led the team with 1,005 passing yards. While he became the first QB in NFL history to rush for 1,000+ yards twice he regressed from his 2019 MVP campaign with 10 fewer TD and three more picks.
Ravens Rushed 58% of the Time
Baltimore led the league last season rushing the ball 58% of the time while only averaging 171.2 passing yards per game. After three early post-season exists the team may air it out more this season.
The team used their first-round pick on WR Rashod Bateman, used a fourth round pick on WR Tylan Wallace, and brought in veteran WR Sammy Watkins. WR Marquise Brown (769 receiving yards) and TE Mark Andrews (701 receiving yards) are back but they are thin after that and the newcomers have to step up right away.
The run game is still the strength of the team that looks for more balance this season. Not only did Jackson rush for over 1,000 yards but the RB duo of J.K. Dobbins and Gus Edwards combined to rush for 1,528 yards.
Offensive Line Improved
The offensive line was an off-season concern, as that unit struggled in the playoffs. They signed veteran G Kevin Zeitler and T Alejandro Villanueva, drafted G Ben Cleveland, and will get All-Pro LT Ronnie Stanley back after missing 10 games last season due to injury. The line will have a new look and the team may miss two-time Pro Bowl T Orlando Brown, who they traded to the Chiefs.
The defense for Baltimore ranked second in the league last season in points allowed and should be solid again. they did not make many moves but did make a couple ones of note to bolster their pass rush.
No edge rusher had more than three sacks last season and the team drafted edge rusher Odafe Oweh and signed veteran Justin Houston, who has at least eight sacks in each of the last four seasons.
The Ravens have a chance to bolt out of the gates, as while they face the Chiefs in their second game, they only face two teams in their first 109 games that made the playoffs last season. However, their end of the season schedule is tough, as in their last seven games they face AFC foes the Steelers and Browns twice as well as the Packers and Rams.
I look for the same type of seasons for the Ravens this season as the last one. The defense and run game will be good but the passing game will not be that much better. With Jackson and the defense Baltimore will win double digits in games and win the AFC North but like the last three seasons will not make much noise in the playoffs.