Key players


QB Kyle Boller

He is a rookie and it may not be fair to put so much pressure on him, but the Ravens will go as far as his young arm can take them. If Boller throws interceptions and cannot move the team, that will increase the burden on the Ravens' defense, which is not even close to the level of 2000 where it carried the load and produced wins. Boller has to grow up quickly.

RB Jamal Lewis

There's no reason to believe Lewis won't continue to be one of the best power rushers in the league. Lewis will be two years removed from knee surgery, meaning he should be ever healthier than he was last year when he rushed for more than 1,300 yards. The Ravens will need that at minimum if the offense is to be effective.

RT Orlando Brown

He has to get into the starting lineup first. Then Brown has to provide some stability to the right side of the line, which often receives the brunt of criticism surrounding the offense. Out of football for three years, Brown still looks like he will be able to give the Ravens a boost late in the season, especially in the running game.

CB Corey Fuller

The Ravens' pass defense finished 26th last year, and the team will need Fuller to help provide stability to a still young secondary. Fuller (left) has fit in well thus far, and the team will need his physical play against receivers when facing the pass-happy Steelers and Browns.

DE Tony Weaver

He was solid last year but needs to provide more of a presence on first and second down. Weaver is the leader of an undersized defensive line, where a defense's success always begins. He will be an every-down player and needs to provide penetration.

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