Ravens Face Browns in Week 2
Ravens Face Browns in Week 2

Today my friend asked me who the Baltimore Ravens play this week. When I told him the Cleveland Browns he said Baltimore would crush them. I said that’s not necessarily true. This perplexed him.

I said that no matter how bad the Browns are, they always show up when they play the Ravens. He was still perplexed.

I added that it’s an AFC North game, teams in the division always play tough and the Browns are no exception. Their recent match-ups have been close with the Ravens squeaking out wins, but the games could have gone either way.

He still didn’t believe me, but it’s the truth. I’d like to say that I’m not nervous about Sunday’s game, but truth be told, I am…

Even though the Ravens have beaten the Browns 10 times in a row, the Ravens still can’t sleep on them.

While the Browns may not have star players, they do have a new coaching staff headed by Rob Chudzinski and new offensive coordinator Norv Turner.

They will likely debut rookie linebacker Barkevious Mingo on Sunday; they also have an emerging tight end, Jordan Cameron, who caught 9 passes for 108 yards and a touchdown against the Dolphins last week.

The Ravens will unveil the Super Bowl XLVII banner before the game which will fire up the players and fans, the Ravens can’t lose focus of the task at hand…to win!

After losing wide receiver Jacoby Jones to a sprained knee last week, they resigned receiver Tandon Doss and added former Kansas City Chief running back Shaun Draughn. Draughn also plays special teams and the Ravens will use him in that capacity.

Other injured Ravens include offensive tackle Michael Oher, sprained ankle, probable for Sunday. Running back Bernard Pierce and defensive linesman Arthur Jones were limited in practice all week, both are questionable. Wide receiver Deonte Thompson, center Ryan Jensen and defensive tackle Brandon Williams are doubtful.

After a crushing loss against the Denver Broncos last week, the Ravens will be determined to step up their game and walk away with a win, but they have challenges to overcome.

Can the Ravens secondary stop Browns quarterback Brandon Weedon?  While the Browns will be without their top receiver, Josh Gordon, they are sure to use running back Trent Richardson. The Ravens must stop their running game.

The Ravens offensive game plan needs to include more running and less passing. The Ravens were unsuccessful at passing the ball last week; they need to get back to the basics of running the ball.

Can the Ravens tight ends hold on the ball? They had butter fingers in week 1; hopefully they won’t drop the ball this week.

With some exceptions, historically the Ravens have bounced back after losses and I hope the trend continues this week; otherwise it will be a long season.

By MelissaRubin

Self-proclaimed sports junkie. Lifelong Baltimore sports fan residing in DC. Baltimore Ravens are my favorite team, I'm a die-hard fan and in constant need of a football fix. Baltimore Orioles and Washington Capitals fan too. Follow her on Twitter @egoddess1