2015 DRAFT GUIDE
Ravens preparing for NFL's 4th-toughest schedule

    2012-04-20 03:23

OWINGS MILLS, Md. (AP) - The Baltimore Ravens will face a demanding schedule when they begin defense of their AFC North division title this fall - including eight games against playoff teams from last season.

The Ravens' schedule is statistically the fourth-toughest in the league as their opponents had a combined record of 134-122 last season, a .523 winning percentage.

And the Ravens face 11 quarterbacks who have been named to at least one Pro Bowl. They square off with the Manning brothers, Peyton and Eli, in consecutive December games.

``It's a tough schedule, but it's a schedule for the Baltimore Ravens,'' said cornerback Lardarius Webb, who signed a $50 million contract this month. ``It's a schedule they always give us because they know that we can take that schedule. We're ready for it. It makes us work a little harder.''

The Ravens open the season by playing four games in 17 days with contests against the Cincinnati Bengals, Philadelphia Eagles, New England Patriots and the Cleveland Browns.

And the Ravens and the San Francisco 49ers are the lone teams to play both Super Bowl teams from last season: the champion New York Giants and the Patriots.

``Every Sunday is tough,'' offensive tackle Michael Oher said. ``You're going to have to come out the same way every Sunday, so get ready for your opponent.''

Under coach John Harbaugh, the Ravens have made the playoffs for four consecutive years and have reached the AFC title game twice. They're the lone NFL team to win a playoff game each of the past four seasons.

The NFL's third-ranked defense from a year ago will need to have another strong campaign while breaking in a new starter in outside linebacker Paul Kruger, the top candidate to replace Jarret Johnson. The Ravens also have Arthur Jones and Pernell McPhee competing at defensive end to replace Cory Redding, who signed with the Indianapolis Colts.

``It's a great opportunity for me,'' said Kruger, a former second-round draft pick who recorded 5 1/2 sacks last season as a situational pass rusher. ``I couldn't ask to be in a better situation, so I'm going to be grinding as much as I can from here until August to prepare myself for camp as much as possible. I'm real excited.''

Johnson, one of the most durable players in franchise history, signed a four-year, $19 million contract with the San Diego Chargers.

Before Johnson left, he imparted some of his knowledge of the game to Kruger.

``He taught me a number of things, mainly just how to be a student of the game and how to make yourself better in the classroom,'' Kruger said. ``So, that's one thing that I'm going to take from him for sure. My main focus this offseason, is just grasping everything, understanding the defense through and through.''

The Ravens also will have a new left offensive guard as Pro Bowl guard Ben Grubbs signed a $36 million contract with the New Orleans Saints during free agency.

Jah Reid, a third-round draft pick last year who played sparingly as a rookie, has shifted from offensive tackle and is now ranked first on the depth chart at left guard.

``They told me to expect to be a starter, work to be a starter, expect to come in and play and work hard,'' Reid said. ``That's what I've been doing.''

Notes: The Ravens have signed former Indianapolis Colts quarterback Curtis Painter to a one-year deal. Painter, former Baltimore starting quarterback Kyle Boller and former Pittsburgh backup Dennis Dixon all worked out for the team on Thursday.

Fantasy Football Player Notes RSS FeedPLAYER NOTES

Sam BradfordJun 29 05:22p

Philadelphia Eagles QB Sam Bradford (knee) is expected to be in the final phase of his rehabilitation from a torn anterior cruciate ligament once training camp begins. Bradford's second [ More ]

Charles JohnsonJun 29 02:02p

Minnesota Vikings WR Charles X. Johnson appears to have everything it takes to produce in the NFL, according to offensive coordinator Norv Turner. 'He's got great work ethic, and [ More ]

C.J. SpillerJun 28 09:02p

New Orleans Saints RB C.J. Spiller has a perfect skill-set for head coach Sean Payton's system, which relies on getting the ball to players in space, according Chris Wesseling [ More ]

Tony MoeakiJun 25 07:12p

Atlanta Falcons TE Tony Moeaki will compete with TE Jacob Tamme for the Falcons' starting tight end job during training camp. QB Matt Ryan praised both tight ends for [ More ]

Kelvin BenjaminJun 25 03:52p

Carolina Panthers WR Kelvin Benjamin's reported weight gain this offseason is being overblown, according to general manager Dave Gettleman. Gettleman expects Benjamin to be ready to go for training [ More ]

Antoine CasonJun 25 03:03a

Free-agent CB Antoine Cason (foot) will miss the 2015 season due to surgery he underwent on Tuesday, June 23. Cason (Ravens) did not specify what type of surgery he [ More ]

Marvin JonesJun 24 09:13p

Cincinnati Bengals WR Marvin Jones (ankle, foot) did not play in 2014 due to multiple foot and ankle issues, but he is healthy and was impressive in organized team activities (OTAs) and minicamp.

Keith WenningJun 24 02:43p

Free-agent QB Keith Wenning (Ravens) signed with the Cincinnati Bengals Wednesday, June 24. Terms of the contract were not disclosed.

Pierre GarconJun 24 02:23p

Washington Redskins WR Pierre Garcon could be featured more often in the passing game this season based on the offseason workouts. Garcon often lined up to the right of [ More ]

Martavis BryantJun 24 01:43p

Pittsburgh Steelers WRs Markus Wheaton and Martavis Bryant are expected to compete for the No. 2 wide receiver job during training camp. Both players performed well during offseason workouts.

Peyton ManningJun 24 11:53a

Denver Broncos QB Peyton Manning was the subject of preliminary trade discussions with the Houston Texans, according to a source. The talks occurred before Manning restructured his deal and [ More ]

Rueben RandleJun 24 10:53a

New York Giants WR Rueben Randle was the best receiver on the field by a wide margin during spring practices, in the opinion of beat writer Jordan Ranaan. Randle [ More ]

Chris IvoryJun 24 10:43a

New York Jets RB Chris Ivory is listed as the starting running back entering training camp, according to beat writer Rich Cimini's unofficial depth chart. RB Bilal Powell is [ More ]

Devonta FreemanJun 23 10:22a

Atlanta Falcons RB Devonta Freeman enters training camp ahead of RB Tevin Coleman on the depth chart.

Joseph RandleJun 23 10:02a

Dallas Cowboys RB Joseph Randle appears to be the clear leader at running back, and it's his job to lose in training camp.

Ahmad BradshawJun 22 11:32p

Free-agent RB Ahmad Bradshaw (Colts) has been suspended one game for violation of the league's substance abuse policy. If he signs with a team he must sit out for the first week.

Terrelle PryorJun 22 04:33p

Cincinnati Bengals WR Terrelle Pryor was claimed off waivers by the Cleveland Browns Monday, June 22, according to a source.

Fred DavisJun 19 06:02p

New England Patriots TE Fred Davis was released Friday, June 19.

Dennis PittaJun 19 02:22p

Baltimore Ravens TE Dennis Pitta (hip) was not medically cleared to practice in minicamp as he continues to recover from his second dislocated and fractured hip in as many [ More ]

Isaiah CrowellJun 19 01:22p

Cleveland Browns RB Isaiah Crowell could be the workhorse back if his ball security improves, according to offensive coordinator John DeFilippo.

Devonta FreemanJun 19 01:12p

Atlanta Falcons RB Devonta Freeman will be used in a lot of different ways, including as a receiver, according to head coach Dan Quinn. 'I knew Devonta had terrific [ More ]

Chris OgbonnayaJun 19 11:32a

Free-agent RB Chris Ogbonnaya (Giants) announced his retirement Friday, June 19.

John MoffittJun 18 11:02p

Free-agent OG John Moffitt unretired Wednesday, June 17, and cleared waivers Thursday, June 18. He is free to sign with a team of his choosing. The Philadelphia Eagles, Miami [ More ]

Terrelle PryorJun 18 09:32p

Free-agent QB Terrelle Pryor is going to give it a shot at playing wide receiver in the NFL. Some teams have already expressed an interest.

Allen RobinsonJun 18 09:22p

Jacksonville Jaguars WR Allen Robinson was described as 'unbelievable' by QB Blake Bortles Thursday, June 18. 'He's definitely a threat now in the red zone. ... He's physical. He [ More ]

Terrelle PryorJun 18 05:32p

Cincinnati Bengals QB Terrelle Pryor was waived Thursday, June 18.

Taylor ThompsonJun 18 05:32p

Tennesse Titans TE Taylor Thompson was waived Thursday, June 18.

Matthew MulliganJun 18 04:32p

Free-agent TE Matthew Mulligan (Titans) signed an undisclosed contract with the Buffalo Bills Thursday, June 18.

Carlton MitchellJun 18 04:22p

Free-agent WR Carlton Mitchell (Buccaneers) signed an undisclosed contract with the Atlanta Falcons Thursday, June 18. WR Shane Wynn was waived.

Daniel ThomasJun 18 04:12p

Free-agent RB Daniel Thomas (Dolphins) signed a one-year contract with the Chicago Bears Thursday, June 18. Financial terms were not disclosed.

Pat DevlinJun 18 04:12p

Chicago Bears QB Pat Devlin, TE Jacob Maxwell and PK Jeremiah Detmer were waived Thursday, June 18.

Dez BryantJun 18 11:42a

Dallas Cowboys WR Dez Bryant arrived for the final day of minicamp Thursday, June 18.

RSS Feeds

NFL News:
 
Player Notes:
 
Forum Posts:
 

© 2015 RealTime Fantasy Sports, Inc.
Email Us  ·  Call Us 636.447.1170  ·  Lost Password
Advertising represented by USA Today Sports Media Group