Each week I will be assessing various Baltimore Ravens players in regards to their fantasy outlook. I will be grading each player on a 10-point scale for their matchup.
1.) Ray Rice 10/10
To say Ray Rice owned the Bengals last season would be a severe understatement. Rice ran roughshod on the Bengals’ 10th ranked run defense last season, as he carved up Cincinnati for 295 yards rushing to go with four rushing touchdowns in both meetings combined. Rice also chipped in with seven catches for 51 yards for an eye-popping 346 total yards. There is no reason to think that another 125+ yard game and two touchdowns is out of the question as Rice is the Ravens’ bread and butter, and Baltimore will not want to get too cute with a divisional opponent coming into M&T Stadium in week 1.
Prediction: 120 yards rushing ,40 yards receiving, 2 TD’s,
2.) Torrey Smith 8/10
Smith had a banner day when Baltimore hosted Cincy last season in week 11, as the speedster reeled in six catches for 165 yards and a touchdown. He didn’t fare nearly as well in their week 17 matchup, as he had five grabs for 33 yards, but the Ravens had already wrapped up the division and there wasn’t much need for an aerial show. Smith is no longer a rookie, so expect some evolution from him as his second season begins.
Prediction: 6 catches, 105 yards, TD
3.) Joe Flacco 6/10
A lot of people believe Flacco is poised for a breakout campaign this season. Offensive coordinator Cam Cameron has implemented a no-huddle offense and is very trusting of Flacco as they enter their fifth season together. Flacco was solid but not spectacular against the Bengals last season as he went a combined 32-46 for 400 yards with three touchdowns and one interception in the two meetings. Flacco still doesn’t have the deepest receiving corp, and tight ends Ed Dickson and Dennis Pitta come into week 1 banged up. Expect the Ravens to take some shots, but expect a heavy dose of Ray Rice.
Prediction: 19-30, 242 yards, 2 TD’s 1 INT
4.) Anquan Boldin 5/10
Boldin is entering his 10th season and his two years in Baltimore have been two of his worst seasons statistically. He had only 3 touchdowns last season, although one came in the Ravens week 11 tilt against the Bengals. I wouldn’t expect much from Boldin heading into the season as he is the Ravens third offensive option at best. If Flacco does take the next step as a quarterback, some of his residual success may find the way of Boldin, but until then, ‘Quan doesn’t warrant any fantasy consideration.
Prediction: 4 catches, 48 yards.
5.) Ravens D/ST 7/10
When you take a quick look at this matchup, two negatives immediately jump out at you: First, Terrell Suggs is out with an Achilles injury and was a major part of Baltimore’s defensive success against Cincy last season. Second, despite winning both meetings, the Ravens allowed a staggering 819 total yards to the Bengals last season. It remains to be seen just how much the Ravens will miss T-Sizzle, and with both Andy Dalton and A.J. Green entering their second season, expect more from the two of them. The Ravens did force four turnovers in the combined meetings though so getting key takeaways helped offset the large amount of yardage allowed. Something going for the Ravens is that they will have an emotional lift, as they will be playing in honor of their late former owner Art Modell. Ray Lewis viewed Modell as a mentor and father-figure, so you have to believe Lewis will have his defensive unit extremely inspired.
Prediction: 2 sacks, 2 INT’s, 1 forced fumble, 325 yards allowed, 17 points allowed