We’re counting down the hours to the beginning of the 2010 NFL season! Most experts are picking the Ravens as Superbowl contenders this year.
But they do play the games for a reason, don’t they?
Every year around this time, I present my completely unreliable, generally biased, and wholly inaccurate predictions for the Ravens regular season games.
The Ravens have a tough start to the season, but as you’ll see, I think the tough part of the season is actually a bit later on.
With that disclaimer, let’s get started!
Week 1, At Jets, Monday, Sept 13 7PM, ESPN
I might be going out on a limb for this prediction, but it’s based on where these two teams are.
The Jets are over rated. They didn’t play well in the preseason. Their QB isn’t going to be able to handle the Ravens confusing defense or pass rush. The Ravens run defense will shut the Jets down, and the Ravens offense is flexible and creative enough now to overcome the Jets strong defense.
I think the Jets are again a 9-7 team, and the Ravens will dispose of them as such.
The Ravens will blow out the Jets by 20 or more points.
Week 2, At Bengals, Sunday, September 19, 1PM, CBS
A second road game to start the season, and the Ravens will be on a short week, heading in to face their toughest divisional opponent. The Bengals match up very well against the Ravens, and I think this will be a close game.
The Bengals will pull it out with a late field goal, with the main surprise being a relatively low scoring game.
Week 3, Vs Browns, Sunday, September 26, 1PM, CBS
The Browns are rebuilding, and the Ravens are set for a Superbowl run.It’s just that simple.
In the home opener for the Ravens, the Browns will be no match for the home team.
It won’t be a blowout only because the Ravens will control the clock and not need to run up the score.
Week 4, At Steelers, Sunday, October 3, 1PM, CBS
I think a lot of people are counting the Steelers out. I’m not. This is still a very physical team, and Dennis Dixon almost beat the Ravens last year.
I think this will be a close, smashmouth game, but the Ravens will prevail, perhaps only by a couple of points. This will be one of the games Steelers fans point to later in the season as a pivotal game they could have won if Big Ben could control his behavior.
Week 5, Vs Broncos, Sunday, October 10, 1PM, CBS
The Broncos are going to be terrible this year. The Ravens will embarrass them. This could be an ugly game, with the Ravens winning by as many as 30 points.
We might get a good look at Tebow after they pull Kyle Orton though.
Week 6, At Patriots, Sunday, October 17, 1PM, CBS
Other than the playoff game last year, the Patriots have the Ravens number when playing at home.
But this time the Ravens will show the playoff win last year wasn’t a fluke.
The Ravens will come in 4-1, hot off a blowout, and will crush another AFC East team.
This one could be over at halftime and this might be the second week the Ravens see a backup QB in a game that gets out of hand.
Week 7, Vs Bills, Sunday, October 24, 1PM, CBS
Another easy home game. The Bills are going to be pretty bad again this year, and the Ravens will easily handle them, although this game might be closer than you think.
Right around this week we’ll start to see some injured players coming back (Reed, Stallworth), they may be on the field, but a little rusty.
Week 8, Bye
The bye week is perfectly timed to get those bumps and bruises healed up and get the guys coming off the PUP a little extra rest before the playoff run.
Ed Reed and Donte’ Stallworth should be healing up and rejoining the team, and any other nagging injuries get an extra week to heal.
Meanwhile, the coaches will get an extra week to prep for the Dolphins, who might just be leading the AFC East.
Week 9, Vs Dolphins, Sunday, November 7, 1PM, CBS.
This is a tough game to predict now. The Ravens will be coming in off a bye week, but the Dolphins will be in the middle of a two or three way battle in the AFC East.
The Dolphins are going to be a solid team this year, but I think the Ravens will show their playoff mettle. It will be a close game.
Week 10, At Falcons, Thursday, November 11, 8:20PM, NFL
With a short turnaround after a tough game against the Dolphins, on the road, the Ravens will have a let down. The Falcons will be a tough opponent on a good week, and this won’t be a good week.
The Ravens will stay in it and have a shot, but I think this is a tough, tough game to win.
Week 11, At Panthers, Sunday, November 21, 1PM, CBS (flexible start time)
Now with a long week to prepare, the Ravens will easily handle the Panthers. I predict a score that doesn’t indicate how badly the Ravens beat up on the Panthers, though.
Week 12, Vs Buccaneers, Sunday November 28, 1PM, FOX (flexible start time)
The Bucs are the Browns of the NFC South, and don’t stand a chance in Baltimore. The Ravens will dominate at home.
Week 13, Vs Steelers, Sunday, December 5, 8:20PM, NBC
While the Steelers may be in third place in the division, this game will mean much more to them in the wild card race than it does to the Ravens.
Further, the Ravens will be due for a letdown, and they always seem to find a way to show that letdown in a nationally televised game.
Week 14, At Texans, Monday, December 13, 8:30PM, ESPN
For the second Monday night game this year, the Ravens will not repeat a blowout performance. The Texans will be good this year, and will be in a playoff hunt.
The Ravens will continue to have a letdown, and while this game will probably be close, and will probably be a good game, the edge will go to the Texans.
Week 15, Vs Saints, Sunday, December 19, 1PM, FOX (flexible start time)
The Saints will be good, but they won’t be as good as they were last year. They will be no match for the Ravens defense in Baltimore, and Joe Flacco could have a career day.
Week 16, at Browns, Sunday, December 26, 1PM, CBS (flexible start time)
The Ravens will handle the Browns. Again. But it won’t be as easy as anyone thinks.
Week 17 , Vs Bengals, Sunday, January 2, 1PM, CBS (flexible start time)
The Ravens will be atop the division, and the Bengals will be fighting for a wild card slot. The Bengals will need to win to get in the playoffs.
The Ravens will need to win to get a first round bye in the playoffs.
The Ravens will get the bye.
Final Record, 12-4, first in AFC North.
This was also posted at BleacherReport.com