Win, lose, or whatever, the Patriots notoriously slam the door on the prior season before the new season begins. The Ravens, one year after a 14-2 regular-season effort, aren’t doing that.
After Sunday’s 38-6 win over the Browns, I asked Ravens coach John Harbaugh what he’s doing to get his guys to forget about the 2019 season and to focus on 2020.
“It’s the opposite,” Harbaugh said. “They think about 14-2 all the time. They want to build on it.”
So far, that attitude is working. To start the year, the Ravens avenged one of only two 2019 regular-season losses, turning the tables on a Cleveland team that came to Baltimore in Week Four and won. This week, the Ravens visit a Texans team that Baltimore trounced in 2019, 41-7.
Next week, the Ravens get a chance to avenge their other loss from the 2019 regular season, when the Chiefs come to town for a Monday night showdown.
The next game with direct significance to 2019 comes in Week 11, when the Titans — who beat Baltimore in the playoffs — come back to Baltimore.
The ultimate test for the Ravens arrives in the postseason, presuming they get there. After losing a pair of home playoff games to cap the 2018 and 2019 seasons, the Ravens will be facing plenty of pressure to reverse their recent fortunes in the playoffs.
Before that happens, they’ll be working to match if not exceed their 14 wins from a year ago. If their key players stay healthy, there’s no reason to think they can’t.