The Baltimore Ravens website recently held a “Bold Predictions” poll to ask the fans who they think will be the future star of the franchise in the years 2014-2016. If you’d like to see what some fans said head over to the Baltimore Ravens ‘Bold Predictions’ article.
I however have put together my own “Bold Predictions” on who I think will be the future star(s) in Baltimore come 2014 and on. I am going to go with 3 offensive players and 3 defensive players to keep things even. Remember this is just my opinion and I could be (but hope I’m not) totally wrong.
1. QB – Joe Flacco: You could say this is an easy pick but then again he was drafted to be the future franchise QB and well the future is now. Flacco does take a lot of criticism from the fans and media but overall he has very solid numbers, many of which are comparable to Matt Ryan. Joe has played 3 years in the NFL playing in and starting 48 games (record as a starter is 32-16). He has taken the Ravens to the playoffs 3 years in a row (08, 09, 10) Other stats: 62% completion percentage, 60 TDs and 10,206 pass yards. Look for Joe Flacco to finally take the reigns of the Baltimore offense in the 2011 season and prove he’s the guy we’ve been looking for that will lead us to the promise land.
2. WR – Torrey Smith: Taken in 2nd round of the 2011 NFL draft with the 58th overall pick, Torrey Smith is the real deal (and a local too, graduating from UMD). He stands at 6 ft 1 in, weighing in at 205 lbs. Not only does Smith have the size to be an affective WR in the NFL he has the speed as he ran the 40 yard dash in 4.41 seconds at the NFL combine. Look for Smith to make an early impact for the Baltimore Ravens offense and as he progresses as a star wide out in the NFL.
3. TE – Ed Dickson: Dickson was taken in the 3rd round of the 2010 NFL draft with the 70th overall pick. He hasn’t be able to show off his true ability yet as he is second string behind the great Todd Heeeap, which is great for him to learn from a dominant TE in the NFL before assuming his starting role. When Dickson has stepped on the field he has played well and as he progresses into his starting role as a TE look for Dickson to have a break out season in 2014-2016.
1. CB – Jimmy Smith: Let’s be honest, the kid is a stud. Yes he has had his off-field issues in college but he is now apart of an NFL organization where he can learn from role model (future Hall of Fame) players such as Ed Reed and Ray Lewis. If Smith can mature into a focused adult on and off the field there is no doubt he has the skill set to become the shut-down CB the Ravens drafted him to be. Plus the kid has swagger which in combination with learning from NFL greats (Reed and Lewis) and maturing as an adult, he could assume the role of being the Defensive Leader for years to come.
2. DT – Terrance Cody: Terrance “Mt. Cody” had a stand-out senior season at Alabama (Roll Tide) and was taken in the 2nd round of the 2010 NFL draft with the 57th overall pick. Cody needed to lose some weight and get in shape as he spent majority of the 2010 season on the bench. There have been many reports that Cody has taken this off-season/lockout very serious and is in the best shape of his life. There is no doubt the kid has skills, he just needs to prove it now on the field which he can and will make his rise as a star on the Ravens feared defense in 2014-2016.
3. OLB – Sergio Kindle: Did you read the title of the article where it said “Bold Predictions”?!?!? Sergio Kindle was drafted in the 2010 NFL draft in the 2nd round with the 43rd overall pick to complement other OLB Terrell Suggs and create a pass rush that would be any QB’s nightmare. Then Kindle fell down a flight of stairs just before 2010 training camp and missed the entire 2010 season. It was reported that he may not play football again but then months later he was cleared and was slowly making his return to the field. Then Kindle got a DUI. I know his off field issues need to be addressed first and foremost right now but once (and hopefully if) he can settle down and focus on football can you imagine the pass rush the Ravens can create? I mean if everything goes as planned, at any time the Ravens could have Ed Reed, Ray Lewis, Haloti Ngata and Terrell Suggs to worry about now mixed with explosive young guys such as Sergio Kindle, Terrance Cody, Jimmy Smith and Lardarius Webb.
Well there you have my BOLD predictions for the Baltimore Ravens future stars of 2014-2016. I am a huge Ravens fan and am excited for the future of the franchise. We have a solid core of great players moving forward into our future as one of the dominant franchises in the NFL. Feel free to leave some comments or add any input you want. Thanks for reading.