What they're saying about the Ravens

With the Ravens in St. Louis to play the Rams for the final preseason game, and the start of their season just 11 days away, here's a look at how other media are predicting the Ravens will fare.

• JJ Cooper of AOL Fanhouse previews the Ravens season, breaking his analysis down according to what John Harbaugh calls "the phases of the game" — offense, defense and special teams. Cooper leads with his perspective on the Ravens offense:

[T]he 2010 season may be the first in a long while where the Ravens will feature a truly multi-faceted attack. Ray Rice proved last year that he's both one of the best pass-catching running backs in the league and excellent at running the ball, as well. But the biggest difference this year is that [ Joe] Flacco will throw to a legitimate set of receivers. ...

• James Walker of the ESPN.com's AFC North blog gives his two cents on Baltimore Sun columnist Mike Preston's interview with Rex Ryan, during which Ryan said he was sure the Ravens injured safety Ed Reed (hip) would play Sept. 13 against the Jets in the Meadowlands.

Credit Ryan for wanting the Ravens at full strength. But I find it strange Ryan believes Reed will play in Week 1, even if it meant Reed wasn't healthy enough to play the following games.

• Jeremy Elliott of the Harrisburg Patriot-News writes about the expectations surrounding the Ravens passing game, especially the high expectations for new wide receiver Anquan Boldin.

Expectations are high for Boldin. He is a premier receiver, a three-time Pro Bowler who has racked up 7,520 yards in seven seasons. Boldin is versatile. He can play the slot or on the outside. He can beat you short or deep and take it the distance. And now that he is in town, Derrick Mason won't have to carry the load.

• Rick Kretzschmar of the News-Journal in Longview, Texas, picks the Ravens to win the AFC North.

The Ravens edge Cincinnati because of fewer off-field issues.

Compiled by Mike Catalini

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