Entering their 20th season the Ravens have been one of the NFL’s most consistent franchises. The Ravens have made the playoffs 10 times since 2000 and have won two Super Bowl titles. They could have won more but have had to do most of their playoff work on the road. The Ravens have played 23 post season games but only 5 in Baltimore.

Team owner Steve Bisciotti recently talked about focusing on winning divisional titles to improve his team’s playoff chances. The Ravens have made the playoffs 10 times but only 4 of those times as division champions, thus the heavy road schedule in their post season history.

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The Ravens 2015 schedule is a tough one with 5 of their first 7 games on the road and two back to back trips out West. It’s not all doom and gloom, the Ravens schedule may be nasty but it looks like their division rivals Pittsburgh and Cincinnati have it worse.

Here’s the good news for Baltimore fans, based on 2014 records of their opponents the Steelers and Bengals rank 1 and 2 in the NFL in strength of schedule, the Ravens are 11.

2015 NFL Strength of Schedule
1. Pittsburgh — 147-107-2 — .579
2. Cincinnati — 144-112 — .563
11. Baltimore — 137-117-2 — .539

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The AFC North teams play the same 14 game schedule (6 AFC North, 4 AFC West, 4 NFC West) the difference is two games determined by matching teams 2014 finish with teams from the AFC East and South and here’s where the Ravens third place finish helps.

Pittsburgh — At New England, home Indianapolis (combined 23-9)
Cincinnati — At Buffalo, home Houston (combined 18-14)
Baltimore — Home Jacksonville, at Miami (combined 11-21)

The Ravens get a big edge over the Steelers playing Jacksonville and Miami while the Steelers have to deal with Tom Brady and Andrew Luck. To make matters worse Pittsburgh will go to New England for the opener without star running back Le’Veon Bell who’s suspended for the first three games.

The Ravens, Steelers and Bengals all made the playoffs last season and all 3 are contenders to be back this coming season. Winning the division is no guarantee to make it to the Super Bowl but it’s a nice start and leads to the road less traveled.

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The three hour prime-time NFL Network schedule show is over and I’m sure I heard a handful of NFL head coaches saying “It is what it is.” The schedule is out deal with it.