The Baltimore Ravens have missed the playoffs for the past three seasons and they seemed optimistic entering training camp on Wednesday in ending that streak. A lot of jobs are on the line for the Baltimore Ravens in 2018, including head coach John Harbaugh and quarterback Joe Flacco. Fans do not rest easy about this and they are very passionate. They have had enough of this losing and they want to see the Baltimore Ravens back in the Super Bowl.
The Ravens haven't been the same team since they won the Super Bowl in 2013 against the San Francisco 49ers. Baltimore always has high expectations every year and they need to find a way to dethrone their arch rivals, the Pittsburgh Steelers in the AFC North.
Baltimore lost in the final seconds against the Cincinnati Bengals in Week 17. If they had won that game, the Ravens would have made the playoffs and the Buffalo Bills would still be in a playoff drought.
Joe Flacco will be the starting quarterback to start the 2018. If he or the Ravens get off to a slow start, will John Harbaugh have the guts to yank Flacco and plug in rookie Lamar Jackson? Jackson will be the backup quarterback. Either Robert Griffin III or Josh Woodrum will compete for the third quarterback spot.
Alex Collins will be the starting running back. Javorius Allen and Kenneth Dixon will both be on the roster, but both will compete for play time as the number two running back. Rookies Gus Edwards, De'Lance Thomas, and Mark Thompson will compete for the final spot.
Patrick Ricard will be the starting fullback.
The Ravens upgraded the receiver core. Michael Crabtree, Willie Snead, and John Brown will be the top three receivers. The final three spots will either be Chris Moore, Bershad Perriman, Tim White, Quincy Adeboyejo, DeVier Posey, and rookie Janarion Grant.
The tight end battle will be a war in training camp. Nick Boyle, Maxx Williams, and Vince Mayle will be competing for roster spots. Rookies Hayden Hurst, Mark Andrews, and Nick Keizer will also be competing for roster spots. I think both rookies Hayden Hurst and Mark Andrews will make the roster. Maxx Williams will probably make the team over Nick Boyle.
The Ravens offensive line wasn't exactly that strong last season, but it could be better in 2018. Ronnie Stanley will be the starting left tackle. James Hurst will be the starting left guard. Matt Skura will be the starting center. Marshal Yanda will be the starting right guard. Alex Lewis and Orlando Brown will compete for the starting right tackle job. Rookie center Bradley Bozeman will be a key backup offensive lineman and rookie Greg Senat and Nico Siragusa will compete for a key backup offensive line role as well.
The Baltimore Ravens lost defensive coordinator Dean Pees in the offseason. He is now the defensive coordinator of the Tennessee Titans. The new defensive coordinator is Don Martindale and he was the linebackers coach last season for the Baltimore Ravens. They play a 3-4 defensive front.
Brandon Williams, Michael Pierce, and Brent Urban will be the starters on the defensive line. Willie Henry, Chris Wormley, Carl Davis, and rookie Zach Sieler will compete for play time on the defensive line.
Terrell Suggs, C.J. Mosley, Patrick Onwuasor, and Matt Judon will be the starting linebackers. Albert McClellan and Za'Darius Smith will be key backup linebackers.
The Ravens secondary was their weak link of the defense last season. Brandon Carr, Jimmy Smith, and Marlon Humphrey will be the top three cornerbacks on the roster. Eric Weddle and Tony Jefferson will be the starting safeties. Tavon Young, Maurice Canady, Jaylen Hill, and rookie Anthony Averett will compete for the final two cornerback spots. Chuck C;ark will be a key backup safety.
Justin Tucker will be the Ravens kicker and Sam Koch will be the Ravens punter. There will be a battle for kickoff returner and punt returner.
The Baltimore Ravens open the season up at home on Sunday September 9 against the Buffalo Bills. The Ravens are in a make it or break it season. Baltimore will win somewhere between 6-10 games and they could be in playoff contention late in the season.