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Ravens land at No. 7 in preseason power rankings

AFC Championship - Baltimore Ravens v New England Patriots Getty Images

On the surface, it seems a bit ridiculous to put the Ravens in the top seven of the preseason power rankings, given a disappointing outcome to the 2013 season and plenty of changes for 2014.

But these are the Ravens, guided by a superb front office and excellent coaching staff.  With some important additions, especially on offense, they’ll be poised to get back to the postseason.

When they do, the Ravens will have the physicality to succeed against the best the NFC has to offer.  If they can get that far — a big if given the quality of the Broncos Patriots.

And here’s the part where all the Ravens fans say the ranking is just right or too low, and all the non-Ravens fans vote that we put the team too high.

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52 Responses to “Ravens land at No. 7 in preseason power rankings”
  1. doctorrustbelt says: Jul 19, 2014 3:54 PM

    rice rice.

  2. watchfullhose says: Jul 19, 2014 4:04 PM

    Too high

  3. rabidbillsfan says: Jul 19, 2014 4:05 PM

    So far, outside of the Bengals, the AFCN is ranked entirely way to high. Steve Smith is no Anquan Boldin, if that’s where this ranking is coming from.

  4. thestrategyexpert says: Jul 19, 2014 4:18 PM

    Too high for two reasons:

    1) Flacco’s cap number was $6.8MM last year and up to $14.8MM this year. So that’s $8MM more out of the equation which is more of a penalty than the average team is incurring at the QB position.

    2) I’m not a Ravens fan and still bitter over them getting awarded a Super Bowl title for no good enough reason.

  5. j0esixpack says: Jul 19, 2014 4:27 PM

    Ravens fans simply will not accept any questions about Flacco – but there are plenty

    The seem to think that because he’s the highest paid QB, he deserves to be paid that much

    But questions in fact do linger

  6. lanzurrah says: Jul 19, 2014 4:33 PM

    How is the AFC North ranked so high? Am I missing something?

  7. polamalurulz43 says: Jul 19, 2014 4:41 PM

    None of the AFC North teams hold promise for the rankings provided.

  8. Stiller43 says: Jul 19, 2014 4:44 PM

    They missed the playoffs and their big addition was a 35 yr old WR and had an offseason littered with arrests.

    And they got better?

  9. therealtrenches says: Jul 19, 2014 5:07 PM

    @thestrategyexpert…

    I think this ranking is too high, too, but…How do you figure that the Ravens won that Super Bowl “for no good enough reason?”

    (I’m not a Ravens fan)

  10. tyler200829 says: Jul 19, 2014 5:07 PM

    Stiller43 you obviously haven’t been paying attention to the ravens then. Adding Zuttah over Gradkowski who was the worst C in the league is a huge underrated upgrade. Plus having Monroe all year at LT, a healthy Pitta/Daniels, plus having an in shape Rice (once he’s back), on top of Steve Smith and Jacoby Jones, and the defense will be top 15 if not top 10. In a weak AFC.

  11. mancave001 says: Jul 19, 2014 5:16 PM

    We all know preseason rankings are garbage, but come on….really? After the bottom 16 were done, the rankings really became incomprehensible. The Ravens at 7 makes me laugh. And before I get accused of being “bitter,” I’m an Eagles fan who doesn’t have too much of a problem with where my team was ranked (I’d probably go a few spots higher than 13th, but we’ve got question marks).

    What I do take issue with are rankings like the Chiefs in the bottom half of the league, the Panthers where they are, and friggin Baltimore at 7. It’s amazing that the team who limped into the playoffs two years ago, had a playoff game handed to them by the officials in Denver and then stole a SB somehow is still given so much respect. More than that, they’ve gotten worse all over the field. No more Ray Ray. No more Ed Reed. Ray Rice is simply not the same player he was, and will likely miss at least 1/4 of the season. Who do they have…the guy who used to be Steve Smith? I just don’t see it.

    Oh, and a little history: Guess which eventual 4-12 team beat the Ravens in week 2 of their SB season? Hmmmm. :).

  12. Nofoolnodrool says: Jul 19, 2014 5:27 PM

    By the number of Raven fans on here even they think the ranking is a joke. Hey their D could be tough, but that offense is very inconsistent especially on the road. I am sure Raven fans will be toasting another paper offseason victory….yawn. Is it football season yet?

  13. ncphinsfan says: Jul 19, 2014 5:29 PM

    I truly do not understand the AFCN teams ranked so high. My Dolphins beat the Browns, Bengals , Steelers and if not for a missed Kick could have beat the Raven too. Did you know the Dolphins are ranked 31st in this absurd, facts aside, completely wrong Ranking.

  14. somethinghappeninghere says: Jul 19, 2014 5:38 PM

    “…superb coaching staff and front office…”

    The truth now comes out. QB doesn’t matter, offensive and defensive ranking do not matter, and even number of arrests and suspended players do not matter (unless they are Dolphins of course). What matters is not that Flacco sucked last year (even that terrible QB Tannehill was better!),, but that Ozzie is better than Hickey (yes, Florio, he is better than Jeff Ireland, okay?),, but that Harbaugh is better than Mr. Magoo..er, Joe Philbin, who because Florio says so will never be even a decent head coach. If Florio had to do coach rankings Philbin would be 100 out of 32, right Florio?

  15. scoobies05 says: Jul 19, 2014 5:43 PM

    my take. a lot of the points brought up made sense, particularly about the coaching staff. bringing in Smith and Daniels just add experienced weapons. and Smith may be on the decline in skill, but his playing style is very boldin like. the line has to be better. can’t be worse. running back Is a question mark for sure, But if you know kubiak’s history, running back Is plug and play. of course all this hinges on Joe. to the poster who said his salary cap numbers went up, so did the salary cap itself. on defense, very solid Corp all the way around. hopefully the young safeties will be helped by an improved front 7. all that said, I do believe the division is wide open. Ravens, Bengals, and Steelers will all be fighting for the top, and I wouldn’t sleep on the browns.

  16. mysterytonite says: Jul 19, 2014 5:45 PM

    Yes they have intangibles, good front office, gm, blah blah blah. Bottom line, they are still the same team who stunk it up for a majority of the season last year.

    Bringing in an over the hill vet like Steve Smith isn’t going to better them. Getting Pitta back will help. Losing there best run blocker in Oher will not help them and leaving the running game as is with a shot Rice and a underwhelming Pierce, isn’t going to do Jump Ball Joe any favors.

    The defense is still solid but Suggs is an old 29 and is there only legit pass rusher, he will regress eventually. Jimmy Smith is the most over rated corner in the league and they have no depth in the secondary or at linebacker. Ngata is the teams best player (has been for years) and Ladarius Webb is a top ten corner. The defense will keep them in games and solid special teams will help them win a couple. However, the offense led by an overpaid, mediocre Flacco will once again show what a mistake Ozzie made in over investing in him. 8-8 in 2014.

  17. distracted9 says: Jul 19, 2014 5:47 PM

    So you think there are only six teams better than the Ravens? Wow.. I just don’t see it .. maybe fifteen or sixteen.

  18. randomcommenter says: Jul 19, 2014 5:47 PM

    There is no justification at all for the Ravens even in the top 15.

    The Ravens won a SB with a great OL, power run game, good defense, and Anquan Bolden catching Flacco’s terrible passes into coverage.

    Now the OL is mediocre. Rice is slowing down. Bolden is gone and Steve Smith is old.

    Carolina would rather have Jerricho Cotchery than Steve Smith. What does that tell you?

    Houston hired Bill O’Brien whose offense hinges on multiple TEs. They let Owen Daniels leave. What does that tell you?

    Suggs is old. They don’t have a pass rush.

    The Ravens are average at every unit.

  19. johnelwayishorsefaced says: Jul 19, 2014 5:52 PM

    “And here’s the part where all the Ravens fans say the ranking is just right or too low, and all the non-Ravens fans vote that we put the team too high.”

    So why do you even bother to have the poll then?

  20. thestrategyexpert says: Jul 19, 2014 6:06 PM

    therealtrenches:

    Referee assistance at multiple points. They shouldn’t have even been in the Super Bowl game.

    I don’t really count it against them that I’m not especially a fan of the team, but I thought it was funny to position my comment that way, and that’s fair to say under the rules of friendly trash talking lol. But even though I’m not a fan today, they could win me over if they ever move to high quality and respectable football ways. If they ever do that I’ll pat them on the back for it.

  21. jmblosser82 says: Jul 19, 2014 6:07 PM

    ncphinsfan, yea the dolphins nearly swept the AFCN. But they were just as close to losing 3 games to the AFCN. Dolphins should’ve been higher, ravens should’ve been lower. But right now these rankings are just opinions

  22. scoobies05 says: Jul 19, 2014 6:10 PM

    to nfnd…if the ravens are celebrating paper off season victories, it better than anything the Steelers have celebrated since before being Tebowed
    to random…I truly love people bringing up flacco throwing horrible passes that only boldin could catch. you are half right. if the passes were so awful, then why we’re none of them picked off. and people make it seem like q was the only raven who caught a pass for 4 games. bottom line is this…boldin was fantastic in the playoffs average during the season. just look up numbers. he had a hard time getting open. Joe was able to put the ball in spots for boldin to use his physicality to make plays. look at the 3rd and 13 pass in the Denver game that Joe threw to Pitta which basically saved the season. if that Joe shows up this year then the Ravens will be serious contenders. and with an improved line and more weapons, Joe should definitely be stepping up

  23. ravenswhat says: Jul 19, 2014 6:28 PM

    People love to point out how the Ravens missed the playoffs last year. Despite getting there the previous 5 years and making deep runs. The haters are going to have a rough year this year.

  24. ravenswhat says: Jul 19, 2014 6:30 PM

    Amazing…from reading the comments, people STILL think Flacco is the highest paid QB. How does this continue to happen?

  25. joejacks says: Jul 19, 2014 6:31 PM

    If u already know and admit they are too high, then you are just playing games. Mark this down, Steelers win AFC North and finish season 12-4.

  26. colv says: Jul 19, 2014 6:36 PM

    ncphinsfan | Jul 19, 2014, 5:29 PM EDT
    Are you one of the sparse fans in the stands in Miami. The success of the Ravens is directly proportional to its leadership in the front office and coaching staff. Dysfunctional Miami really. Bad free agent signings and poor coaching are the order do the day. Besides the embarrassing arrest this year, and it’s cyclic, the Ravens and Steelers are premier teams in the AFC North and football along with NE, NYGs and the up and coming Cincy Club and Santa Clara 49ers.

  27. Nofoolnodrool says: Jul 19, 2014 6:51 PM

    People love to point out how the Ravens missed the playoffs last year. Despite getting there the previous 5 years and making deep runs. The haters are going to have a rough year this year.

    You mean the Raven fans that are haters? Get a grip dude five deep runs and one Super Bowl …big deal!

  28. colv says: Jul 19, 2014 6:55 PM

    The big difference, and maybe ranked too high-yes, is they kept their pieces this year with a much better OC line, defense and a healthy offense on paper and I didn’t mention the owner as being ELITe like in the towns I mentioned above. I’m retired military now living in Vero Beach Fl and rooted for Miami and Pittsburg when we were robbed of our team in the 80s and root first for the Ravens and if they are out of it I root for the AFC North and Miami and Tampa and Jax for NFC. Hugely disappointed in them, Fins, and their sparse fans base In Vero at sports bars, around town and on the beach there are very few Florida fans for Tampa, Jax and Miami. I don’t understand how the FL teams don’t support their teams compared to the AFC North and many others in the NFL. When the teams where playing in the NE last year in the cold and snow the stands where full in Baltimore, Philly, NY and NE. Here in Fl with a Miami home game the stands where, perception wise nearly empty with crystal blue sky’s and in the high 70s beach water 80 degrees. I guess most Miami fans where at the beach like myself. So, ncphinsfan | Jul 19, 2014, 5:29 PM EDT, where were you at last year in supporting a dysfunctional team- this still applies, your HC, lack of leadership in the locker room, owner and GM, bad drafting and free agent pics are pretty marginal. I’ll see you in the stadium I hope in Miami.

  29. 34defense2014 says: Jul 19, 2014 6:57 PM

    Ravens will have the physicality to succeed against the best the NFC has to offer. WHAT??!!! uh, no way!!! No way!! Not against the Hawks or 49ers!! No way

  30. Nofoolnodrool says: Jul 19, 2014 7:05 PM

    to nfnd…if the ravens are celebrating paper off season victories, it better than anything the Steelers have celebrated since before being Tebowed
    to random…I truly love people bringing up flacco throwing horrible passes that only boldin could catch. you are half right. if the passes were so awful, then why we’re none of them picked off. and people make it seem like q was the only raven who caught a pass for 4 games. bottom line is this…boldin was fantastic in the playoffs average during the season. just look up numbers. he had a hard time getting open. Joe was able to put the ball in spots for boldin to use his physicality to make plays. look at the 3rd and 13 pass in the Denver game that Joe threw to Pitta which basically saved the season. if that Joe shows up this year then the Ravens will be serious contenders. and with an improved line and more weapons, Joe should definitely be stepping up

    Flacco had one great playoff run out of five. Baseball players get cut batting .200. I am elated he is the Ravens QB. In honor of Ray Rice will the music at the stadium be elevator music to make him feel at home?

  31. 34defense2014 says: Jul 19, 2014 7:06 PM

    Yeah ok? And that wasn’t holding in the end zone? Right!

  32. 4thqtrsaint says: Jul 19, 2014 7:06 PM

    The people who post make so many valid points about why the Ravens shouldn’t be ranked this high. I’m not a “hater”. I don’t hate them at all. In fact, I’ve always kind of liked them. But they aren’t even close to the 7th best team in the league. They aren’t even the best in their division.

  33. slick50ks says: Jul 19, 2014 7:28 PM

    This is the dumbest ranking so far, which is saying something.

    These guys won’t come close to sniffing the playoffs.

    The serious decline of this team is obvious to everyone but PFT.

  34. binkystevens says: Jul 19, 2014 7:34 PM

    Frankly, no AFC team should be higher than #5

  35. frenchysgoldfish says: Jul 19, 2014 8:13 PM

    J Peezy say, They Soft.

  36. poesports says: Jul 19, 2014 8:17 PM

    The Ravens have been in the upper class of the NFL for several years now. An owner committed to winning games. One of the best GM’s in football. A head coach who has won a Super Bowl just 2 years ago. Players that are both veterans and rookies with above average talent. To discount this team as simply mediocre would be unwise. Even with the aberration of an 8 – 8 record last year (trades,injuries,SB hangover), they were still in the playoff chase till the very end. Now the Ravens have a third place schedule and look to make another quality run. All we can ask for as fans is to have a competitive team with a chance at the postseason and a SB run. With the pieces the Ravens have assembled, they will once again have that chance.

  37. vikesr4reel says: Jul 19, 2014 8:53 PM

    Joe Flacco!!!!
    Worse QB in AFC by a mile!!
    Laughable how much the Ravens paid him!!
    Lol
    Skol

  38. biglaj007 says: Jul 19, 2014 9:01 PM

    Why do people hate the Ravens so much! I think it’s because of their success. They broke so any hearts when they beat Denver & NE to get the SB & lots of fans still can’t get over it! Ever news articles good or bad about Ravens gets a lot of hate!

  39. youplayinfoosball says: Jul 19, 2014 9:06 PM

    Good lord do squeeker fans actually have lives? Or are you all just glued to your screens waiting for a Ravens article? I guess spittsburg is as terrible as they say. I love how you all talk about our QB and front office all the time, yet your front office refuses to pay one of the best QBs to ever play for your team. It will be hilarious when Ben is hanging out in bathrooms in Miami and sporting the teal and white.

  40. nattybroh says: Jul 19, 2014 9:40 PM

    Flacco is still the highest player in the league? People are idiots.

    I just don’t get what people hate about the Ravens.

  41. scoobies05 says: Jul 19, 2014 11:33 PM

    so if flacco had 1 great run out of line, lets discuss Ben’s great super bowl performances..crickets. and dude…for such a smart fella, it would really do you right Skippy to come up with some new material. your shtick is getting old. yawn. leave the true football talk to the adults

  42. asmodeus1971 says: Jul 20, 2014 3:08 AM

    “Flacco, who signed a six-year, $120.6 million contract last year, actually has manageable salary cap numbers for this year and 2015. His $14.8 million cap number isn’t the highest on the team. It ranks behind defensive tackle Haloti Ngata’s $16 million cap number.

    Flacco’s cap number doesn’t even rank in the top 10 among quarterbacks. It’s tied for 11th with the Patriots’ Tom Brady.

    Half of the quarterbacks who have a higher cap number than Flacco in 2014 haven’t won a Super Bowl. Eli Manning, who has the highest cap number among quarterbacks this season at $20.4 million, threw an NFL-worst 27 interceptions last season.

    Flacco is making $6 million this year in salary, which also doesn’t top the Ravens. Ngata ($8 million) and cornerback Lardarius Webb ($7.5 million) are earning more than Flacco in 2014.

    Here are the 14 quarterbacks whose 2014 cap number is over $10 million:

    Quarterback Team Cap number
    Eli Manning New York Giants $20.4M
    Ben Roethlisberger Pittsburgh Steelers $18.89M
    Jay Cutler Chicago Bears $18.5M
    Drew Brees New Orleans Saints $18.4M
    Sam Bradford St. Louis Rams $17.61M
    Aaron Rodgers Green Bay Packers $17.55M
    Matt Ryan Atlanta Falcons $17.5M
    Peyton Manning Denver Broncos $17.5M
    Philip Rivers San Diego Chargers $16.66M
    Matthew Stafford Detroit Lions $15.82M
    Joe Flacco Baltimore Ravens $14.8M
    Tom Brady New England Patriots $14.8M
    Carson Palmer Arizona Cardinals $12M
    Tony Romo Dallas Cowboys $11.77M”

  43. gron4u says: Jul 20, 2014 3:08 AM

    It’s funny how many fans forget how the Ravens were running away with the Super Bowl and “somehow the lights mysteriously went out. Whether it was conspired or not, it broke the momentum of the Ravens. They still managed to win the Super Bowl. If Colin Kaepernick had kept the ball on the ground, there might have been a different finish. The Niners chose to pass and it didn’t work out……Point is…the Niners almost stole a SB only because somebody chose the “Buffalo Wings method” of cheating. The better team won….that’s all that counts. I wonder why John Harbaugh got away with giving Anquan Bolden to his brother. I wonder why the league didn’t question that move.

  44. clashpoint says: Jul 20, 2014 5:21 AM

    Perfect. The Ravens stink when overrated (like last season) and play well when underrated (like when they won the super bowl). This seals their basement finish for the upcoming season. Go Steelers!

  45. Nofoolnodrool says: Jul 20, 2014 7:01 AM

    Flacco is still the highest player in the league? People are idiots.

    I just don’t get what people hate about the Ravens.

    I guess you must be a Ray Rice fan. Also the fans are quite whinny and obsessed with the Steelers who live rent free in their heads.

  46. jmblosser82 says: Jul 20, 2014 9:50 AM

    Flacco has top 5 contract total and guaranteed money. He only held the title of richest contract for a week or so. To get his cap number manageable after it hits the upper 20 million mark they will be mortgaging the future just the Steelers did with Ben.

  47. scoobies05 says: Jul 20, 2014 11:28 AM

    big Ben. Hines ward. James Harrison. fans who troll on every article about a team they claim not to care about. an inferiority complex from their fans that makes them think they have the most nfl titles when in reality they aren’t even close. lots of reasons for fans everywhere to dislike the Steelers too skippy

  48. Nofoolnodrool says: Jul 20, 2014 1:55 PM

    big Ben. Hines ward. James Harrison. fans who troll on every article about a team they claim not to care about. an inferiority complex from their fans that makes them think they have the most nfl titles when in reality they aren’t even close. lots of reasons for fans everywhere to dislike the Steelers too skippy

    I guess your right, but being hated for that is a lot better than for missing white suit and some elevator music, if you get the drift. I don’t hate the ravens , that requires work,energy, and time. Let’s just leave it as loath them and don’t respect them..ok.

  49. scoobies05 says: Jul 20, 2014 2:10 PM

    dude…your Steelers are pretty despised outside of Pittsburgh. and as much as your Steelers eyes refuse to see it, your team has lots of questionable character issues. starting with your coach and your qb. once again, you bring up Ray Lewis. not a saint but certainly not guilty of the crimes he was accused of. But since he’s not a Steeler he’s guilty. that’s what makes you a hypocrite.

  50. Nofoolnodrool says: Jul 20, 2014 4:42 PM

    I am not sure you can back up the statement about Tomlinson character other than the minor sideline snafu. At least he doesn’t pass off wife beating as a “silly summer thing” …really classy by your coach. My criminals have no charges against them or him in court, but god knows the Ravens have. The funny part is the team, fans and coach all love their criminals…you enjoy and the rest of us will laugh at you as usual…the I can’t get now respect guys…aka Raven fans.

  51. guitarkevin says: Jul 21, 2014 8:28 AM

    The Ravens have won 2 Super Bowls in their short existance in the league. If you count them out at any time, you are a fool.
    Last year was a season to weed out some guys. They did that. There will be a few bugs to work out but this team will contend, you can count on that.

  52. shortycraig says: Jul 21, 2014 11:01 AM

    I get why people think they are rated too high, and they probably are.

    But I do not get why everyone thinks they did not deserve to win the SB two years ago. Were you watching the same blowout I was? If not for the lights going out it would have been just as bad if not worse than Seattle’s blowout over Denver.

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