The Baltimore Ravens are currently enjoying their bye week as they sit at 9-3 on the season, top of the AFC North and the AFC as they hold the No. 1 seed.
But while the Ravens are at the top of the AFC mountain right now, the biggest challenge will be staying there. After the bye, Baltimore’s schedule gets real tough as the Los Angeles Rams, Jacksonville Jaguars, San Francisco 49ers, Miami Dolphins, and Pittsburgh Steelers are all on the schedule.
Granted, three of those five are at home, but the Ravens are 4-2 at home, so they aren’t exactly bulletproof at M&T Bank Stadium.
Baltimore currently has the sixth-ranked offense for points per game (27) and second-best defense for points allowed (15.6), so if there is a team that could run the table, it’s the Ravens.
With Mark Andrews out for the rest of the regular season at least, there were rumors that now free agent tight end Zach Ertz could be a target for Baltimore, but with Isaiah Likely showing promising signs and Charlie Kolar making plays, maybe there isn’t a need for Ertz.
Coordinators Todd Monken (offense) and Mike MacDonald (defense) are no doubt tightening things up over the bye week as they look to steel themselves for this final, brutal five-game stretch.
Getting to the top is hard, but staying there is even harder, and the Ravens have it all in front of them. Keep winning, and the Super Bowl could go through Baltimore. Lose, and the AFC playoff picture gets decidedly murky.