Baltimore Ravens 2015: Preview, Predictions & NFL Odds

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Saturday, 20 June 2015 18:15
2015 Baltimore Ravens Odds & Predictions 2015 Baltimore Ravens Odds & Predictions

The Baltimore Ravens have made the playoffs in six of the seven season in which John Harbaugh has been their head coach. With the Ravens defense returning to Top 10 form in 2014, there is no reason to suspect that Baltimore will not return to the postseason in 2014. In fact NFL odds at sportsbooks have listed the Ravens as a respectable 25/1 longshot in predictions to win the Super Bowl, 12/1 to win the AFC Championship and +190 favorites to win the AFC North. By all accounts, Baltimore has a legitimate chance of making a run to the championship that is until you consider what the organization lost in the offseason.

Offensive coordinator Gary Kubiak left to become the new head coach in Denver. Nose tackle Haloti Ngata is now in Detroit and wide receivers Torrey Smith and Jacoby Jones have new homes. Owen Daniels, one of the league’s up-and-coming tight ends, followed Kubiak to Denver. There is no doubt that the Baltimore Ravens lost some key pieces to their roster. Still, the cupboard is not bare, especially on offense. Quarterback Joe Flacco returns after throwing for 3,986 yards and 27 touchdowns last season. Flacco is strong-armed and smart, traits that have helped him become one of the league’s most unheralded quarterbacks. They also helped him earn a Super Bowl ring and huge contract.

Flacco still has one of the league’s more formidable weapons in 36-year-old wide receiver Steve Smith. Smith, who will be playing in his 15th NFL season, finished last year with 79 receptions for 1,065 yards. The Ravens drafted Breshad Perriman (6-2, 212) out of Central Florida to replace Smith. Perriman is basically a faster version of Smith, reportedly having run the 40-yard dash in under 4.3 seconds. Baltimore also drafted tight end Maxx Williams from Minnesota. Williams is a complete tight end who could wind up contributing greatly since the future of Dennis Pitta (hip injuries) is still in doubt.

The Ravens defense will likely carry them to the playoffs and possibly a 2015 AFC North title. The pair of Elvis Dumervil (17) and Terrell Suggs (12) combined for 29 sacks last season. Linebacker C.J. Mosely is quietly becoming one of the NFL’s best at the position. Baltimore plays in what might again be the toughest division in NFL odds, the AFC North. Three teams – Baltimore, Cincinnati, and Pittsburgh – made the playoffs last season. The Ravens will find out very quickly where they are this season when they open the season with Kubiak and Denver and then take on both the Steelers and the Bengals in the first four weeks of the 2015 season.

Ravens Update (9/11/15): Baltimore are now +2000 favorites in Super Bowl predictions, +900 to win the AFC Conference and +130 to win the AFC North.

Last modified on Friday, 11 September 2015 13:29

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  • Philadelphia Eagles vs Atlanta Falcons Odds - NFL Picks Week 1

    The Chip Kelly experiment continues as new starting quarterback Sam Bradford takes over one of the NFL’s best offenses. Kelly, of course, is well known for his offensive innovations and has helped the Philadelphia Eagles to back-to-back 10-plus win seasons. The Eagles get a chance to continue and get back to the postseason when they open Monday Night Football with a trip to the Georgia Dome to face the Atlanta Falcons. Bradford, who has missed the better part of the past two seasons with knee injuries, is finally healthy enough and is in command of the up-tempo Eagles offense. He is surrounded by a wealth of talent including last year’s NFL rushing leader RB DeMarco Murray. Jordan Matthews and rookie Nelson Agholor give Bradford youth but ample talent at the wide receiver positions. Eagles vs Falcons odds favor Philadelphia on the road by a field goal (-3) while NFL picks for week 1 on the over/under total are set at 55½.

    The former Rams QB, Bradford was the 2010 Offensive Rookie of the Year after starting all 16 games. He then played in roughly half of the team’s next 64 games suffering knee injuries in consecutive seasons. The Eagles opponent, Atlanta, welcomes new head coach Dan Quinn, former defensive coordinator in Seattle. Quinn’s first task will be improving a defense that finished dead last in the league in total yards allowed per game (398.3). Quinn and the Falcons selected undersized hybrid LB/DE Vic Beasley of Clemson in the first round and acquired Adrian Clayborn in the offseason to help. Along with LB Justin Durant, the defense should improve at least enough to take some of the pressure off of the offense. If Atlanta is going to have any chance of covering the spread as home underdogs in Eagles vs Falcons odds, the defense must be able to slow down the potent Philly offense.

    Quarterback Matt Ryan enjoyed his fourth straight 4,000-yard season last year, but he and the rest of the Falcons offense must work under new offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan this season. There have been some struggles with the new zone-running based offense and problems with the offensive line have not helped. Atlanta has actually beaten Philadelphia the past two times that the two teams have met. Ryan threw for seven touchdowns in those two meetings. It is doubtful he will have that kind of success Monday night. Look for Philadelphia to have a lot of offensive success against a struggling Atlanta defense. The week 1 season opener (Monday, September 14th) between the Eagles and Falcons can be seen live on ESPN at 6:55pm EST from the Georgia Dome.

  • New York Giants vs Dallas Cowboys Odds - NFL Predictions Week 1

    The New York Giants would love nothing more than to start the 2015 season with a win over their NFC East division rivals, the Dallas Cowboys. The Cowboys will be looking to win back-to-back division titles for the first time in over a decade. No team in the division has repeated in 11 years. The Giants winners of two Super Bowls in the 2000s, have not tasted much success lately and last season was dreadful. After starting the season 3-2, the Giants running game and defense disappeared on the way to seven straight losses. The club did finish the season 3-1 but must address their running game and a defense that allowed 395.3 yards per game in 2014. Giants vs Cowboys odds in Vegas favor Dallas by nearly a touchdown (-6) while NFL predictions for the week 1 total have been set at 52.

    New York will be without the services of Pro Bowl defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul who injured a hand over the summer in a fireworks accident. Pierre-Paul finally met with Giants representatives after missing all summer team activities and preseason training camp. His status is still uncertain. New York will also be without the services of star wide receiver Victor Cruz, who is still not fully recovered from a patellar tendon injury suffered last October. What the Giants do have is QB Eli Manning and WR Odell Beckham Jr., the NFL’s breakout star of 2014. In just 12 games, OBJ had 1,305 yards receiving and 12 touchdowns. Manning, despite the Giants inability to run the ball, still enjoyed a decent 2014 season tossing 30 touchdowns compared to just 14 interceptions. Manning will need to control his turnovers in week 1 if New York is to cover the spread as underdogs in Giants vs Cowboys odds.

    Dallas, which has beaten New York four straight times, will rely on the arm of quarterback Tony Romo who led the NFL last year with a passer rating of 113.2. The ground game may suffer some as last year’s leading rusher, also the league’s leading ground gainer, DeMarco Murray is now in Philadelphia. Murray will be replaced by Darren McFadden, Christine Michael, Lance Dunbar, and Joseph Randle. Romo will still have WR Dez Bryant as his top receiving target. Bryant, who just signed a five-year, $70 million deal in the offseason, led the league in receiving touchdowns last year with 16. The Cowboys defense will be without DE Greg Hardy until late October and LB Rolando McLain will miss the season’s first four games due to suspension. Still, the Cowboys should have enough to win its fifth straight over the Giants.

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