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Three storylines heading into the Ravens' season

How successful can the Ravens be on offense without Anquan Boldin and Dennis Pitta?
Replacing Boldin and Pitta won't be easy, and that was evident throughout training camp and the preseason. Boldin was the Ravens' top wide receiver last year and a go-to player for quarterback Joe Flacco throughout Baltimore's run to a Super Bowl. Pitta was another key piece of Baltimore's passing game last season and was expected to take on an even bigger role in the offense this year with Boldin gone, but he suffered a serious hip injury early in training camp and could miss the entire season. But even without those two, the Ravens still have Flacco, they still have Ray Rice and Bernard Pierce at running back, and they still have Torrey Smith at wide receiver. Baltimore's offense has struggled some during the summer, but tight end Ed Dickson is healthy now after missing most of the summer with a hamstring injury, and Baltimore is enthusiastic about the progress of rookie wide receivers Marlon Brown and Aaron Mellette.

How good will the new-look defense be?
The Ravens' defense has been a consistent bright spot throughout the summer. There are several new pieces - and Baltimore enters tonight's season opener against the Broncos with six new defensive starters - but the defense has progressively jelled during the summer and flashed the capability to be a potentially dominant unit. Baltimore is particularly enthusiastic about the play of its defensive line, the potential of its pass rush with Terrell Suggs and Elvis Dumervil and the play of new inside linebacker Daryl Smith.

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Can the Ravens make another run at a Super Bowl title?
The pieces are in place to do it. The Ravens' defense has a chance to be one of the league's best, and there's plenty of talent offensively as well. The biggest question at this point is how successful Baltimore can be in filling the voids left by Boldin and Pitta.

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