With the opening of the 2013 NFL season about to begin I would like to take this time to reflect on what has become of the Baltimore Ravens. This journey began with John Harbaugh head coach and Joe Flacco starting quarterback in 2008. Both these individuals are the only two remaining characters on this journey who had the most to do with where the Ravens stand today. I would also include Ray Lewis and Ed Reed but Lewis is now an ESPN analyst and Ed Reed is playing with the Houston Texans. The point I wish to emphasize is that winning a Super Bowl is an awesome accomplishment but there were a variety of a events leading up to this occasion that also need to be appreciated making the hoisting of a Super Bowl trophy that much more extraordinary. It’s here where I make a specific reference to four consecutive playoff appearances of which the first three results were due to lack of an effective offense. The last time the Ravens were shown the door on their attempt to reach the Super Bowl they played well enough to defeat the New England Patriots and claim victory in the AFC championship game in 2011 were it not for the dropped pass by Lee Evans in the end zone and the attempted field-goal by Billy Cundiff that sailed wide left. This was a crushing defeat I will always remember because Joe Flacco clearly played better than New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady. Last year’s playoff appearances and the Ravens rematch with the Patriots erased the memory of the last playoff loss I experienced as a fan of the Baltimore Ravens.
Tonight the Baltimore Ravens enter a new a period inn their history as a team. With nine starters gone from last year’s Super Bowl team the expectations must be significantly scaled downward. Interestingly enough at the beginning of the 2012 season the projected AFC Champion was the Denver Broncos. This year the Denver Broncos are once again projected to be the 2013 AFC Champions. They also happen to be opening the NFL season against the Baltimore Ravens. It’s a new season and the defending Super Bowl champions are facing an opponent that is expected to appear in the Super Bowl in New York in 2014. As a fan of the Baltimore Ravens I wouldn’t want it any other way.