Tonight, the St. Louis Rams take on the defending champion, Baltimore Raven in their NFL preseason finale. To get some inside information on Broncos’ camp, we went behind enemy lines and spoke with Lindsey, hostess of the Purple Reign Show, a weekly podcast dedicated to the Baltimore Ravens (broadcast through the Ball Hogs Radio Network). With it being Week 4 of preseason, the “starters” are likely to see little to no time on the field. However, that does not mean that both the St. Louis Rams and the Baltimore Ravens cannot take something away from the game. To get some deeper insight on the opponent, here are are Ramblin’ Fan’s five quick questions…
With it being the preseason finale, how much do you anticipate the Baltimore Ravens playing their starters on offense and defense?
Very minimal, or not at all. Flacco will not play tonight, for example. I anticipate tonight being more of a ‘make it or break it’ night, as with any preseason finale. It will be big in determining who makes the team and who doesn’t; who has more of a chance to grow, learn, and improve and who doesn’t.
With countless roster changes on both the offensive and defensive sides of the football, who will step up as the “leader” in both units?
The team is Flacco’s hands-down. Regardless if people think he is boring or doesn’t have the ability to be a leader, he leads the team in his own way. Obviously with guys who have personalities like Ray Lewis, Ed Reed, Terrell Suggs, Flacco isn’t someone who is going to get after it like those guys did. He won’t be the one screaming at his players at half time, or giving motivational speeches. It’s not what he does. But, he does give guys the confidence to win – he’s his own example in that category.
The AFC North appears the be the toughest division from top to bottom in the AFC. Where do you project the Baltimore Ravens to finish? Who do you see as the biggest threat?
It won’t be an easy road for the Ravens – it never is in the AFC North. Not being a homer here, but I anticipate them to win the division, based on the other teams’ weaknesses. The Steelers are always a threat to us, no matter how many people try to count them out. The Bengals are the team to be afraid of though. I don’t think they’re as clean as the Ravens are right now , but if they get better as the season goes on (which I 100% expect), they’re the ones to fear.
What is the biggest “roster battle” that has yet to be decided, if any?
One of the main battles that everyone has been talking about is center (Gino Gradkowski v AQ Shipley) – I fully expect Gradkowski to win that battle. Wide receiver is the position that worries me the most. Personally, I don’t trust anyone except Torrey Smith at the moment to really push and make plays.
Which young player on the roster should we be looking for tonight against the St. Louis Rams?
With that being said keep an eye on some of the young receivers , like Aaron Mellette, Marlon Brown, Tandon Doss, to name a few. Matt Furstenburg is another (TE from University of Maryland) who could be beneficial in the offense. On the defensive side, one of the guys I’m looking forward to seeing is S Omar Brown. While he’ll be behind Elam, Huff and Ihedigbo, he’s still got a chance to make the team – we haven’t seen much of him yet this preseason, but we will tonight.
For more information about the Baltimore Ravens, make sure to head over to EbonyBird.com, the Ravens page within the FanSided Network. To hear more from Lindsey and the Purple Reign Show, tune in live every Wednesday at 8:00PM ET or check out their podcast, available on iTunes.