Baltimore Ravens: What will their 2020 record be?

Baltimore Ravens quarterback Lamar Jackson (8) pushes away Pittsburgh Steelers linebacker T.J. Watt (90) during the first quarter at Heinz Field.
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Ricky Dimon

NFL

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Since graduating from Davidson (The College That Stephen Curry Built), I have been writing about sports--just about any and all you can think of!--and coaching tennis in Atlanta, Ga. Beyond the four major sports, I am an avid tennis fan and cover the ATP Tour on a daily basis. If I'm not busy writing, you can generally find me on a tennis court or traveling the world wherever a sporting event takes me.

The Baltimore Ravens went an NFL-best 14-2 last season, earned home-field advantage throughout the AFC playoffs, and were the Super Bowl favorites heading into the divisional round. However, they got bounced right away by the Tennessee Titans—thus ending Lamar Jackson’s MVP-winning campaign.

Despite that premature setback, expectations are once again sky-high in Baltimore. Is another 14-2 regular-season effort possible? Based on both the Ravens’ talent level and their schedule, it appears to be well within reason.

Week 1: vs. Cleveland Browns

Inexplicably, one of Baltimore’s two losses in 2019 came at home to none other than Cleveland. You can be sure Jackson won’t let that happen again while making an early-season statement. Win

Week 2: @ Houston Texans

The Texans’ divisional-round collapse against the Kansas City Chiefs was the stuff of legend and their ensuing offseason was almost as bad. This beatdown will only add insult to injury. Win

Week 3: vs. Kansas City Chiefs

Speaking of the Chiefs, this Monday night showdown is just about as big as it gets for the NFL’s regular season. Baltimore fell at Kansas City in Week 3 last year but should get revenge at home. Win

Week 4: @ Washington Redskins

The Redskins have seemingly added some nice pieces here and there in recent years and now they have a new coach in Ron Rivera. That being said, serious contention is still a long way away. Win

Week 5: vs. Cincinnati Bengals

The reigning Heisman Trophy winner (Joe Burrow) is actually older than the reigning NFL MVP (Jackson). When it comes to pro experience, however, that is obviously a much different story. Win

Week 6: @ Philadelphia Eagles

Although this won’t be an easy one no matter what, who knows if Carson Wentz will still be in one piece for the Eagles heading into Week 6? Look for Baltimore to go into Philly and gut out a tough victory. Win

Week 7: vs. Pittsburgh Steelers

Ben Roethlisberger is back, but is he really one of the best quarterbacks in the league at this point in his career? The Ravens are simply the better team and the first of two rivalry battles come at home. Win

Week 8: BYE

Week 9: @ Indianapolis Colts

Baltimore is coming off a bye week and facing an opponent embarking on a new—albeit temporary era—at quarterback in the form of Philip Rivers. If there are fans at the RCA Dome, they won’t be in for a fun afternoon. Win

Week 10: @ New England Patriots

As good as these Ravens are, I just don’t see them going 9-0 to start the season. Even in the post-Tom Brady days, New England will be a tough out at home and Bill Belichick will come up with something to contain Jackson. Loss

Week 11: vs. Tennessee Titans

The sample size remains small, but Jackson appears to be a whole different beast in the regular season than he is in the playoffs. He isn’t going to lose to Tennessee twice in a row at home. Win

Week 12: @ Pittsburgh Steelers

Get your popcorn ready for the second of two showdowns between these AFC North rivals, which comes on Thanksgiving night. Playing at home, Pittsburgh could pull off a minor upset. Loss

Week 13: vs. Dallas Cowboys

This is a second consecutive Thursday night billing for the Ravens, who will be eager to get back on track. Back at home, they should not have too much trouble doing just that at the expense of a solid but unspectacular Dallas squad. Win

Week 14: @ Cleveland Browns

Cleveland could be hanging around in some kind of postseason contention at this stage, but a home loss to the rival Ravens could mark the end of the road. I’ll take Jackson over Baker Mayfield any day of the week. Win

Week 15: vs. Jacksonville Jaguars

Gone are the days when the Jaguars played dominant defense. They won’t be able to stop Baltimore’s offense, nor will they be do any damage on the other side of the ball. This is a laugher. Win

Week 16: vs. New York Giants

Speaking of laughers, a home date with the Giants is just about as easy as it gets for the Ravens. They may be able to wrap up home-field advantage with this convincing victory. Win

Week 17: @ Cincinnati Bengals

The Bengals will be out of it at this point but won’t be tanking since they already have their QB of the future in Joe Burrow. Baltimore will have already clinched the AFC’s top seed with a 13-2 record and head-to-head defeat of Kansas City. Loss

A schedule that includes the NFC East, AFC South, and their toughest opponent (the Chiefs) at home is a friendly one for the Ravens. They should be able to capitalize to the tune of a 13-3 or 14-2 record depending on if they have to put forth an effort in the season finale against Cincinnati. Of course, the real question is if Jackson and company are ready to take the next step in the playoffs….

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