Baltimore Ravens predictions, odds, and preview for the 2023 season

By VSiN Staff  ( 

September 4, 2023 04:00 PM

Baltimore Ravens 2023 season preview and predictions

This appeared in the original VSiN NFL Betting Guide released on June 29, 2023.

Adam Burke: With the highest-paid player in NFL history back in the fold, the Baltimore Ravens are looking for their fifth playoff appearance in the last six seasons. The five-year, $265 million contract that Lamar Jackson negotiated for himself solved the quarterback question for the Ravens, but the onus is now on him to answer some questions, specifically about his health. If he can do that, the Ravens can absolutely challenge the Bengals and make it back to the postseason.


Jackson has only been able to play 12 games each of the last two seasons for the Baltimore offense, and he hasn’t been able to replicate his 2019 MVP season or his strong follow-up in 2020. Jackson has a 33/20 TD/INT ratio over the last two seasons, and while he’s rushed for 1,531 yards, he only has five rushing touchdowns. He had seven in each of 2019 and 2020 alone.

Optimism is high with the Ravens, though, because new offensive coordinator Todd Monken is back after three impressive seasons with the University of Georgia. They also revamped the wide receiver position with first-round pick Zay Flowers and reliable veterans Odell Beckham Jr. and Nelson Agholor in free agency. After gaining just 5.5 yards per play last season, this offense definitely needed a spark.

A healthy J.K. Dobbins would also provide a spark, as he had 5.7 yards per carry over 92 attempts, The new-look WR corps should also give Mark Andrews a few more open targets. He was third in receiving yards among tight ends on a team-high 113 targets. This was a top-10 offense in EPA/play through 11 weeks prior to Jackson’s season-ending injury in Week 12 against the Broncos, so there is a foundation to build on with more talented personnel.


The Ravens only allowed 5.3 yards per play, but they finished 14th in EPA/play, 22nd in Dropback EPA, and 21st in Dropback Success Rate. They effectively stuffed the run and allowed just 3.9 yards per carry, but there were some coverage breakdowns. The advanced stats weren’t as kind to this defense as the more traditional metrics.

Baltimore allowed the seventh-highest completion percentage against, despite finishing in the top 10 in sacks with 48. The Ravens worked in enough good outcomes to cover for some of their pass defense failings, as they were third in red-zone touchdown percentage and fourth in third-down conversion rate against. They’ll run it back with a similar group this year minus Calais Campbell and Chuck Clark.


Every team in the AFC North is chasing Cincinnati, and every AFC team may very well be chasing the Bengals, but the Ravens are a well-run, well-coached organization with 45 wins in the 61 games started by Jackson. They look to be the division’s second-best team solidly, and that should be good enough for a playoff berth in the expanded postseason. Their win total, however, seems fair at 9.5, so a slight lean to the over, as it depends on Jackson’s health.

This appeared in the Updated VSiN NFL Betting Guide released on August 31, 2023.

Michael Lombardi: The Ravens finally lost a preseason game, ending their 24-game win streak, but what is more alarming than the Ravens losing a preseason game is that in two weeks of games, their defense hasn’t been able to get off the field. They have played 35:36 minutes of defense in the two preseason games and allowed their opponents to convert 47.1% of their third downs. 

Last summer, they were balanced with time of possession, playing 30:41 of defense and 29:19 of offense. When you factor in that their best corner Marlon Humphrey is going to miss regular season game time, and their pass rush was so weak they needed to call in defensive end Jadeveon Clowney, this indicates a problem. The North is loaded with good teams and good quarterbacks. So the question that lingers at the end of summer for the Ravens is, are they good enough on defense, even when healthy? Call me highly skeptical.

Player to Watch: WR Zay Flowers

The Ravens’ first-round rookie might have been the best player in Ravens training camp. Flowers runs precise, decisive routes that create space against defenders, he makes the contested catch, and his burst and shiftiness after the catch is exactly what the Ravens were looking for. The Ravens rebuilt their receiver room this offseason, adding Flowers, Odell Beckham Jr. and Nelson Agholor. Other than Mark Andrews, Flowers might end up becoming Lamar Jackson's favorite target because he gets open in the short and intermediate spaces. That’s where Jackson throws best. - Bo Smolka, Pressbox (@bsmolka)

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