NFL Betting: Baltimore Ravens 2018 Season Recap
The Baltimore Ravens 2018 season were one of the more interesting teams and seasons to bet along this season. They had a bunch of ups and downs, and also changed quarterbacks midway through the season. They started off hot, slumped for a while with Joe Flacco, then surged once Lamar Jackson was inserted into the lineup. You also couldn’t have been more happy even if you were betting for or against the Ravens every week, as they finished the year 8-8 against the spread. They did fail to cover in their one playoff game, so technically they went 8-9. During the regular season, the over cashed seven times and the under cashed nine times, with the under also cashing in the playoff game. They were actually better against the spread on the road (5-3), then they were at home (3-5).
Baltimore Ravens Recap
The season was an emotional one for Ravens fans, and a transitional one. Not only was it the last season for longtime general manager Ozzie Newsome, it was also the last season for longtime starting quarterback Flacco. Rumors also swirled that head coach John Harbaugh was on the hot seat, although he ultimately saved his job with the strong finish to the season.
The year started off with plenty of optimism that Joe Flacco would recapture his previous form and have a resurgent year. Things started off great with a 47-3 beatdown of the Bills in Week 1, but they went downhill in a hurry after that. They got beat badly by the Bengals on Thursday Night Football just a few days after that, and ended up 4-5 after three straight losses just a few weeks later. Flacco was dealing with a back injury at the time, and the team opted to go with Jackson.
It was initially thought that the switch to Jackson while Flacco recovered might be short term, but Jackson quickly put that talk to rest. While he struggled a bit as a passer as most rookie quarterbacks do, he helped lead an electric Ravens ground game that completely fooled opponent. While the rest of the league got pass-happy, the Ravens got back to their roots as a power running team. They went 6-1 the rest of the way, but then Jackson struggled mightily in the playoffs and they fell to the Chargers.
The team had a successful season on paper, winning the division, but it’s not an easy road forward. The AFC North could be the best division in football next year, as the Steelers still have a ton of talent and the Browns are on the rise. The Ravens’ new GM said earlier this week that he expected free agents would want to come play with Jackson, and he indicated they would be aggressive in free agency. One rumor that started picking up steam was the potential acquisition of Le’Veon Bell, fueled in part by Bell himself on Twitter. The Ravens have a very talented, fast defense but could use a big upgrade for their skill position guys.
Super Bowl Or Bust?
Michael Crabtree doesn’t cut it as a number one receiver, and if the team wants Jackson to better develop as a passer, he needs better weapons. It’s unclear exactly where the division odds and win totals will open, but the Ravens will likely be opened somewhere in the nine wins range by oddsmakers. Currently they’re listed as 33/1 to win the Super Bowl in the earliest futures odds.