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Mark Zinno: Ravens Opener Preview With Mike Flynn

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 (Photo by David Maxwell/Getty Images)

(Photo by David Maxwell/Getty Images)

As the Ravens get set to start their Super Bowl title defense, former Raven Mike Flynn – who was asked to come back to Baltimore to help kick-off the season – spoke with Zinno about what it’s like defending a title. “There is a Super Bowl hangover,” said Flynn. The focus is the hard part he said because you are the biggest game on everyone’s schedule.

The roster looks a lot different than it did on that first Sunday in February. There were a lot of changes. “There’s a lot of talent there,” Flynn said. “We did it a little bit different. We reloaded.” The 2001 Ravens made big changes to try and repeat and came up short. The 2013 Ravens have eight starters from the Super Bowl no longer on the team.

Finally, they talked about Flynn’s position of center, which Gino Gradkowski will now take over for the retired Matt Birk. Some of the challenges the 2nd-year player will face are numerous, but Flynn said he should rely on the players around him like Marshall Yanda, Kelechi Osemele and quarterback Joe Flacco. “Despite being young, he’s the de facto leader of that group,” said Flynn. The Ravens open up against the Broncos in Denver on Thursday.

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