Early look at Ravens’ 2013 schedule – piling up wins early will be key

Baltimore Ravens v Cleveland Browns

The general feeling among Ravens fans about the team’s schedule is that it starts off a little easy and ends hard, at least on paper.

As far as the Week 1 opponent, the Denver Broncos, it will be a difficult game on the road, but the Ravens have shown that they can win there under pressure.

After that, three out of the next four opponents are the Cleveland Browns, Miami Dolphins and Buffalo Bills. Those are – again, on paper – games the Ravens should win. The same could be said about the homecoming of Ed Reed with the Houston Texans in Week 3, if the way the Texans played in Foxborough in the playoffs last year is any indication.

Unfortunately, as Ravens fans we are well aware of the issues the Ravens have had in recent years of taking care of teams they “should” beat (see: Seattle, Jacksonville in 2011, Washington, Pittsburgh with Charlie Batch in 2012).

They need to avoid those costly stumbles in 2013.

Now let’s fast-forward to the second half the schedule. In week 10, you have the Cincinnati Bengals at home. Then after that, the Ravens travel to Chicago. Sitting here in April, 1-1 in those two games seems like a worst-case scenario.

We’ll see.

Down the stretch, let’s look at the gauntlet the Ravens will try to tackle:

Week 12 vs. Jets
Week 13 vs. Steelers
Week 14 vs. Vikings
Week 15 at Lions
Week 16 vs. Patriots
Week 17 at Bengals

Four out of those six opponents won at least eight games last year; luckily for the Ravens three of those four are at home.

We all know that the strength of schedule means nothing in the offseason. But at the same time, do you really think the New England Patriots will fall off in the weak AFC East? I don’t. They usually just coast, and could have their playoff seed locked up by Week 16.

I wish the Ravens had it that easy.

Also, a little interesting note – is this some sort of tradition now to play the Bengals week 17 of every season? Since 2010, the Ravens have played the Bengals in week 17 every season, and since 2011 the game has been in Cincinnati.

This team should be up for the task…we know that. But the key will be the Ravens stacking wins in the early “easy” part of the schedule and not putting themselves in a situation where they are desperate for wins in the “tougher” second half.

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About Wola Odeniran

Wola Odeniran
Born in Silver Spring, Wola Odeniran remains a Maryland resident. He is currently a student at UMUC with a major in graphics communication, the ultimate goal being a career in journalism. Wola is a lifelong Ravens, Orioles and Terps fan…all the way!...more

7 Raves on “Early look at Ravens’ 2013 schedule – piling up wins early will be key

  1. melvin on said:

    that strategy worked for us in 2012. we limped into the playoffs losing 4 of 5, but success on the front end got us to the tournament. once you get there, the record resets to 0-0

    • Wola Odeniran on said:

      I really think it helped the Ravens too. There was something about last year that felt like, they have been through everything so they know what the task is at hand in the playoffs.

      The losses in a way took the pressure off of themselves. Out the past 5 years, many would argue that this team may been the Ravens weakest team. But all they had to go through in the past prepared them for the moment.

  2. Nicholas on said:

    Hey Wola, nice article.

    Do you really wish the Ravens had it as easy as NE has it in the AFC East? I did think we were getting close to that which would be boring as hell! Thoughts?

    It is nice to feel that the aravens have at least had a big hand in creating such a tough division

    • Wola Odeniran on said:

      Thanks Nicholas!

      Every once in a while I wish the Ravens had it easy like the Patriots. But the good thing for the Ravens is, the tough AFC North really prepares them mentally for the playoffs.

      The thing that makes the Pats coast during the regular season at times makes them weak in the playoffs.

      At the end of the day, I agree with you.

  3. lastcallbmore on said:

    I see a 12-4 season out of that schedule. Maybe better if Caldwell keeps up this airial attack . Ravens need a strong possession receiver and a left tackle. That is it and all when it comes down to it.

  4. CD on said:

    Everybody gets up for the games against the reigning champs, this will be a tough season, game by game. Expect some growing pains early as the new roster begins to gel. The division is getting better, and the Tin Men don’t usually have many bad years in a row. But we should expect a strong closing month as coaching and team chemistry comes together and get to the playoffs again – where like melvin said, we all are at 0-0.

  5. Jerry M on said:

    I think we have enough talent handle this schedule throughout And I believe we will come together and get everyone spinning on all cylinders before the start of the 2013 season. Yes we are the CHAMPS so teams are going to try to bust us in the chops but we will prevail with a young, fast, strong & smart Defense. And a offense that will outscore the best of em. With Flacco out playing both Manning bros and Brady two yrs in a row. The only thing I see for our future is success. JUST BELIEVE IT THE BMORE WAY OF LIFE

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