BALTIMORE (WJZ) — The Baltimore Ravens went 5-11 last season, but with some new faces, returning key players and a brand new roster, the team is looking to turn 2016 into a more memorable season.
Check out some of the most noteable changes below:
New faces: S Eric Weddle, WR Mike Wallace, rookie OT Ronnie Stanley, rookie RB Kenneth Dixon, secondary coach Leslie Frazier, defensive line coach Joe Cullen.
Key losses: OL Kelechi Osemele, LB Courtney Upshaw, LB Daryl Smith, QB Matt Schaub, S Brynden Trawick, OT Eugene Monroe, DE Chris Canty.
Strengths: Solid at skill positions, although two key players are returning from injury: QB Joe Flacco and WR Steve Smith. OG Marshal Yanda is among best linemen in NFL, and Weddle provides experience and solid tackling at back end.
Weaknesses: With Terrell Suggs and Elvis Dumervil coming off injuries and Courtney Upshaw gone, Ravens lack pass rush. Also, they’re gambling that Stanley can handle LT position as rookie.
Fantasy Players To Watch: Flacco, Smith, Wallace, Watson.
Expectations: If healthy, Ravens should improve on their 5-11 record, which included nine defeats by eight points or fewer. Unfortunately, one of key offseason acquisitions, free agent tight end Benjamin Watson, is lost for year after tearing Achilles tendon in preseason game. Offense still has potential despite Justin Forsett being cut and replaced by Terrance West, but defense, long a strength, lacks pass rush and effective cornerback opposite Jimmy Smith.