The Baltimore Ravens enter the 2010 season with high expectations.
Through the draft and free agency, Baltimore looks to be a Super Bowl contender this upcoming season.
However, with a challenging regular season schedule, how will the Ravens pan out?
So today, I present my game by game predictions through the entire season.
What a way to open the season, with the first ever Rex Ryan Bowl.
We already know the history of Rex Ryan and the Ravens the last few years, so let's dive into the match up.
Here is what we have: Two top five defenses, great running games, young quarterbacks.
The Jets will be the favorite on opening night, and I can't imagine the hype they will receive in the previous days.
I see the Ravens pulling the upset on Monday Night. It helps that Santonio Holmes, a member of the Baltimore killer club ( along wih Peyton Manning) will miss multiple games due to suspension by the NFL.
Prediction: Derrick Mason has solid game, and the Ravens will run the ball to the victory. 23-17 Ravens
Division play begins early for both teams, as the Ravens ( 1-0) take on 2009 division rival Cincinnati ( 0-1).
The Bengals are looking to be more than a one year wonder, and they will get a close win on their home turf to begin the year.
Carson Palmer has great success against the Ravens, and the additions of Antonio Bryant, Jermaine Gresham, and Jordan Shipley creates one of the strongest receiving groups in the league.
The running game will also be key. Cedric Benson will have at least one rushing touchdown.
Baltimore will make it close, but for the second straight road game, they will end up in the loss column for the first time this year.
Prediction: Bengals 24 Ravens 20
The Ravens come home in disgust after a loss to divison rival Cinci.
Unfortunately, the Browns are the lucky winner.
Let's see why the Browns are in trouble.
1. They have the interception machine in Jake Delhomme
2. He has no receivers that can break a sweat on the Ravens corners
3. The Ravens are arguably the best against the wild cat..
Include the young, inexperienced defense, it will be a long day for the Browns.
Sorry to pick on them, but they have no chance in Baltimore.
Prediction: Ravens 36 Browns 12
The Ravens-Steelers rivalry is renewed early in the season, which at the time is a game the Ravens can't lose.
With Ben Roethlisberger to miss the game, it is important for both teams, but the Ravens have to jump on the opportunity.
The departure of Santonio Holmes makes the Steelers offense much easier to handle.
It will be a close game as usual, due to the strength of the Steelers defense.
Ravens 27 Steelers 17
A rematch of last season, the second home game for the Ravens is in their favor.
The departure of Brandon Marshall leaves a receiving group that has to fill a huge hole.
For this to stay a close game, it will have to be defense all the way for the Broncos.
This will be the best game for the Ravens offense, as the home crowd spuns them again.
Ravens 34 Broncos 16
Week Six will be tough for the Baltimore Ravens.
The team returns to Foxboro to take on the Patriots, whom they trounced on in the playoffs last year.
The Patriots are known for returning the favor, especially in their own building.
Here is how I see it. The Ravens will be leading 27-21 with the final possesion going to the Patriots.
New England will go 60 yards on 8 plays, waste 3.15 on the clock, and Wes Welker will score the winning touchdown ( first of the season).
Pats 28 Ravens 27
Once again, the Ravens come home with anger on their minds, against one of the weaker teams in the league in the Bills.
Here are my predictions.
Joe Flacco: 21-24, 327 yards, 2 touchdowns
Ray Rice: 156 yards, 1 touchdown
Anquan Boldin-Donte' Stallworth: 1 receiving TD
Ravens defense: Gives up 10 points, forces three turnovers ( one returned for TD)
Ravens 34 Bills 10
The Ravens come off on a bye-week to face the Miami Dolphins, one team that the Ravens have success against.
Sure, the addition of Brandon Marshall does wonders for the offense. However, the Ravens have always shut down the running gamme of the Dolphins, and has handled Marshall pretty well in the past.
Miami's defense is improved under Mike Nolan, but with the young corner backs taking their leaps and bounds, Flacco will have another solid game.
Combined with the balanced rushing attack, the Ravens stay undefeated at home.
Ravens 31 Dolphins 17
The Flacco- Ryan bowl begins it's history on a Thursday night in Atlanta.
Both teams with third year QB's, and are fighting for playoff position.
I think the Ravens have the advantage. The defense is better than the Falcons offense, while the offense is better than Atlant'a defense.
It will be a close game, no doubt. I'll give Baltimore a seven point win.
Ravens 27 Falcons 20
The NFC South tour continues through Carolina, as the Ravens face a Panthers team that is a .500 club right now.
I see another win for Baltimore here.
Terrence Cody and Haloti Ngata are comfortable in their situations, and will give the Panthers rushing attack a tough time to get yardage.
If the running game falters, the Panthers are in trouble. The only threat for Carolina is Steve Smith, who will receive quite the attention from Ed Reed and company.
Ravens 31 Panthers 14
The Ravens will return home with a dominating win vs the Bucs.
With an offense that struggles, and an aging defense, it spells disaster for Tampa Bay fans.
Here is my prediction: This will be the first game the Ravens reach 500 total yards of offense.
Joe Flacco will have 292 yards, and three touchdowns.
Ray Rice-Leron McClain- Willis Mgahee will have 208 rushing yards.
The Ravens defense will also hold the Bucs offense to single digits.
Ravens 42 Buccaneers 9
It is desperation time for the Pittsburgh Steelers.
As the black and gold stick around in the playoff hunt, a must win is needed against rival Baltimore.
Though I won't rool out a possible sweep of the Steelers, it will be tough to make it happen.
The return of Big Ben is huge for the Steelers. By this time, I am sure he has reached his groove with his receivers, especially Mike Wallace.
My prediction: Big Ben throws 3 touchdowns, 1 INT. Joe Flacco thros 2 touchdowns, 1 INT.
This time, the Steelers will steal one from Baltimore in overtime.
Steelers 30 Ravens 27 OT
This late in the season, is when the Ravens will face back-to-back losses in a season.
Houston Texan's passing attack is one of the best in the league, and for the first time this year, the secondary may have trouble stopping another receiver.
Andre Johnson will open up the field for Kevin Walter, and Owen Daniels.
The rushing attack will also come alive as well.
Joe Flacco and company will put up points against the proving defense, but Houston outscores the Ravens in the MNF showdown.
Texans 34 Ravens 28
For most Ravens fans, it may seem like trouble for Baltimore. Coming off two straight losses and facing the defending champs may seem like bad news.
However, the Ravens end the losing streak this week. With the weather getting colder, both passing games will be weakened, especially hurting the Saints game plan.
New Orleans will have trouble finding success on the ground.
On the other side, Ray Rice will lead the way with 2 rushing touchdowns, Leron McClain will earn one as well.
Joe Flacco will end up with one touchdown and one interception, while Drew Brees has two touchdowns and two interceptions.
Reggie Bush will take a punt return to the house for the touchdown.
In the end, it will be a Ravens victory.
Ravens 34 Saints 21
The Baltimore Ravens look to clinch the AFC North with a win against division foe Cleveland.
I see them earning the victory.
The Ravens will score four total touchdowns ( two rushing, two passing).
The Browns will also have a difficult time scoring against the top Ravens defense, who are good at stopping the wildcat.
Ravens 31 Browns 13
An exciting way to end the regular season is a playoff type atmosphere in Baltimore. Cincinnati has hopes of hanging onto a wild card spot, with a win locking up that spot.
But, I'll give the Ravens the win in their own building. The weather is bound to be a factor.
Neither passing games will be effective, so it will come down to both rushing attacks.
The Ravens three headed monster gets the advantage, especially at home.
Ray Rice will earn a touchdown, while Anquan Boldin will pick up a reception TD from Joe Flacco.
Certainly won't be a high scoring affair, but the Ravens get the nod at home.
Ravens 21 Bengals 17
Turn to the next page for final thoughts.
The Baltimore Ravens will finish with a 12-4 record. The first six games are tough, as they face four possible playoff teams.
The last month and a half is also challenging as well.
However, Cam Cameron will create a balanced offensive attack.
Predictions: Joe Flacco will clip the 4000 yard passing mark. The Ravens defense will be top five once again, and number one against the run.
As for the playoffs.... You will have to wait and see, as they come later in the summer with my NFL predictions.
2010 season will be an exciting one for the Ravens. I predict a 12-4 record.
An 11-13 win season is in the cards for this team.
I'll say Joe Flacco reaches the 4000 yard mark by the end of the season.
Will also predict that the Ravens finish top five in defense, and number one against the run.
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