Baltimore (0-0) at Denver (0-0)
When: Sunday, September 13th 2015
Where: Sports Authority Field, Denver, CO
Time: 4:25 ET
TV: CBS Radio: XM 802, 82
Peyton Manning headlines the CBS game of the week on late Sunday afternoon as his Broncos host the Baltimore Ravens. Manning had another fantastic year for Denver last season throwing 39 touchdowns and passing for over 4,700 yards. He did struggle down the stretch throwing 6 interceptions to only 3 touchdowns in his last four regular-season games. He will once again have two fantastic targets to throw to. Demaryius Thomas and Emmanuel Sanders had career years in 2014. Thomas had 111 catches for 1,619 yards and 11 touchdowns, while Sanders had 101, 1404, and 9 TD’s. John Elway’s long-time backup Gary Kubiak will now coach Denver replacing John Fox. He leans more on the running game and two tight-end sets, so in comes Owen Daniels to replace Julius Thomas at TE. C.J. Anderson will be the main running back this season. The Broncos had the second best defense against the run last year holding opponents to only 79.8 yards a game.
That will make the Ravens’ Justin Forsett’s job a little tougher today. He took over after the Ray Rice suspension and promptly ran for 1,266 yards and 8 touchdowns in 2014. Joe Flacco is of course under center for Baltimore again. He had a career high 3,986 yards passing last year to go along with his career best 27 touchdowns. WR Torrey Smith went to San Francisco, while first round pick Breshard Perriman is out this week. That leaves veteran Steve Smith who caught 79 passes for 1,065 yards last year. The Ravens set a club record by scoring 409 points and gaining 5,838 total yards last year. Expect a little drop off this year, but not much.
These two quarterbacks met in Week 1 of the 2013 season in Denver and the Broncos won 49-27. Manning threw for 7 touchdowns that day and 462 yards. The Ravens defense is better now and Manning is two years older. I don’t see that kind of blowout, but I can see a high scoring game. Flacco did beat Manning in the Playoffs on January 12, 2013, so he is capable of winning tough road games even though his stats don’t back that up. I’ll take the Ravens to keep it close.
Pick: Ravens +4.5