Many have been hyping the Baltimore Ravens as potential Super Bowl contenders almost since the start of the offseason, and they’ve made the list high as the season gets closer to starting.
Recently, Conor Orr of Sports Illustrated took a look at picking out some of the teams that he figured to be good contenders for the Super Bowl. 12 squads made the cut, and the Ravens were one of them. Orr had the Ravens in the No. 6 position on his list of contenders.
Here’s what he wrote:
“Baltimore is an obvious choice here given their offensive scheme, which hosted by far the most efficient passing and rushing offense in the league last year. Lamar Jackson will only get better as a passer (and he was certainly good enough a year ago). A gigantic built-in advantage for Baltimore was the way they padded an already solid defense with talented veterans like Calais Campbell and Derek Wolfe, who, regardless of how their defensive draft picks shake out, should elevate a unit that was fourth in DVOA a year ago.”
Obviously, the Ravens are a team to remember this season in terms of getting to the Super Bowl but winning it. They have a serious offense, an elite defense and enough depth on both sides of the ball to get the job done. That’s likely just what Orr sees here.
Colin Cowherd Predicts Perfect Ravens Record
According to Fox Sports analyst Colin Cowherd, it could even mean the Ravens are primed to blow through the season and finish with a mark of perfection. Recently, Cowherd explained why he thinks the Ravens will have a huge season, and he admitted he thinks it has everything to do with the pain they sustained last year and how motivating that figures to be.
That might not be the case for their closest competition, both teams who competed in last year’s Super Bowl.
“Of the 3 great teams in the league, it’s actually been fairly easy for Kansas City. Patrick Mahomes learns from Alex Smith, next year it’s the AFC Championship, next year they win the Super Bowl. Pretty quick. San Francisco, first year Jimmy Garoppolo and Kyle Shanahan are together, they roll the good teams. They go to the Super Bowl. Of the great rosters, (in Baltimore), it’s been more of struggle than you think. It pissed (Lamar Jackson) off. The scariest thing in the world in pro sports is great people who have been humiliated, get out of their way. The AFC is a 2 team race. One of them is holding champagne parades. The other has been humiliated. Watch it. I’ve never said this in my life. Baltimore is the two scariest things in football. Stacked and pissed, because it’s been hard. Ravens 16-0. Count on it.”
Interestingly, the Ravens themselves have no thoughts on this line of thinking from the media. As John Harbaugh recently said, he refers to such lines of thinking as “noise.” Clearly, the Ravens are locked in ahead of a key season on the field.
It’s a season Cowherd thinks is likely to be dominant thanks to the struggles the team has already had.
Ravens Motivated Heading Into 2020 Season
Recently, NFL.com writer Marc Sessler put together a list of teams which will come into the season with a chip on their shoulder. According to Sessler, the Ravens are high on the list thanks to how last season ended.
“Those same Titans operated as a chaos-inducing, third-party candidate by marching into Baltimore and thrashing the Ravens. To the naked eye, Baltimore appeared lost in the latter stages of a belladonna voyage as Derrick Henry flung dazed defenders into the terrible Maryland night. In a flash, the mighty Ravens — their 14-2 record, their MVP quarterback and all their boasts — were reduced to salt. Few teams burn more brightly for a chance to make things right.”
The way the Ravens lost in 2019 should have them very motivated into 2020, and could drive them forward most of the year. It’s safe to say of all the pain that was endured last season in the playoffs, nobody sustained as much as Baltimore.
This year, they could be hungry, motivated and ready to exact some big revenge.