If you haven't noticed, the Ravens have gotten some acknowledgement.
They're the popular pick to win the AFC North, Joe Flacco is ranked as the 8th best QB, John Harbaugh is ranked as the 3rd best coach, and Tedy Bruschi has the Ravens roster ranked above the Patriots.
It's not something that fans are used to and some fans don't like the team getting all this recognition.
We should like the recognition. The team deserves recognition.
This team beat Pittsburgh in their own house in the playoffs without their starting tackles, with an undrafted rookie starting at Left Tackle, a fifth round rookie starting at Right Guard, without their #1 Tight End, and with a secondary that had a converted safety who primarily plays on special teams and a player who was poached off of some teams' practice squad a month starting at corner. The very next week this same team went to Foxboro and gave the Patriots an incredibly tough game.
This team is amazingly talented and they are one of the best teams in the AFC. The Ravens are one of the few teams in the NFL that can stand against the Patriots, and possibly the only team in the AFC who can beat them in the postseason. This team has the potential to represent the AFC in the Super Bowl.
The Ravens have a top-10 QB, a top-5 coach, and a general manager who is among the best in the business.
The Ravens offensive line allowed the second fewest sacks in the NFL last year and they turned a seventh year journeyman into the NFLs fifth leading rusher. And all five of these linemen are coming back and Jeremy Zuttah and Eugene Monroe are fully healthy this year.
The Ravens have a reliable veteran in Steve Smith and guys who are ready to take the next step in Crockett Gillmore, Kamar Aiken, and Lorenzo Taliaferro. They drafted even more weapons for Flacco this year: wide receivers Breshad Perriman and Darren Waller, tight ends Maxx Williams and Nick Boyle, and running back Javorius Allen.
This could very easily be the most talented Ravens offense ever.
On defense the Ravens have a great mix of young talent and veterans on hand.
Brandon Williams and Timmy Jernigan proved that they can hold down the fort without Haloti Ngata, Chris Canty is still around as an underrated run defender. And Brent Urban, Kapron Lewis-Moore, DeAngelo Tyson, and Lawrence Guy will give the Ravens a solid rotation along the defensive line. The Ravens also drafted Carl Davis in the third round, and he is out to prove that he should have been drafted in the first round.
The Ravens might have one of the best linebacker corps as they have Terrell Suggs and Elvis Dumervil, who combined for 29.5 sacks in 2014, Courtney Upshaw, who has done well as Jarret Johnson's replacement, Daryl Smith, who has taken on the unenviable task of succeeding Ray Lewis as good as anyone has, and C.J. Mosley, who was one of the best defenders in the NFL last season. They also drafted a replacement for Pernell McPhee when they selected Za'Darius Smith in the 4th round.
In the secondary the Ravens have Jimmy Smith returning from injury, and when healthy he is an elite cornerback. They also have Lardarius Webb who is not coming off of surgery for the first time in years, Kyle Arrington, who is a high quality slot corner, Kendrick Lewis, who should be an upgrade over Darian Stewart, and Will Hill, who is one of the best safeties in the league. They also hope to have better depth with Rashaan Melvin, who showed some promise this season, Cassius Vaughn, a veteran corner, 4th rounder Tray Walker, Terrence Brooks making strides in his second year, and hopefully some form of improvement from Matt Elam.
This team has the potential to be the best team in Ravens history. Embrace the praise, Ravens fans, because it's high time for the team to get some.