<
>

Wake-up caw: Comparing Ravens, Seahawks

2/4/2014

A year ago, the Baltimore Ravens were sitting in the same place as the Seattle Seahawks. But, according to Comcast SportsNet's Clifton Brown, the Seahawks are in better shape to repeat as Super Bowl champions than the Ravens.

Brown gave three reasons: Offseason won't gut the Seahawks like the Ravens; Seahawks are younger than the Ravens; and the Seahawks have a dominant defense.

"[W]ill the Seahawks miss the playoffs next season, like the Ravens did this season? It’s hard to see that happening," Brown wrote. "No NFL team has won back-to-back titles since the Patriots in 2003 and 2004. But the Seahawks look very capable of repeating."

I agree that the Seahawks are positioned better than the Ravens were a year ago. But there are question marks with Seattle. Quarterback Russell Wilson wasn't sharp in the second half of the season. In his final seven games, including playoffs, he threw more touchdowns than interceptions three times.

The biggest obstacle for the Seahawks is their division. The NFC West is the NFL's toughest with the San Francisco 49ers, who have gone to the NFC Championship Game every year under coach Jim Harbaugh, and the Arizona Cardinals, who went 10-6 in 2013.

Here's the rest of your wake-up caw ...

  • Henoc Muamba, a middle linebacker for the CFL's Winnipeg Blue Bombers, tried out for the Ravens, according to The Baltimore Sun. Muamba was voted the Blue Bombers' Most Outstanding Player, Most Outstanding Defensive Player and Most Outstanding Canadian this past season.

  • Kyle Shanahan, who was reportedly a finalist for the Ravens' offensive coordinator job, was hired to run the offense for the Cleveland Browns, the team announced. It is believed that the Ravens were choosing between Shanahan and wide receivers coach Jim Hostler before Gary Kubiak entered the search.

  • The Baltimore Sun's Matt Vensel points out that the Ravens got a glimpse of what was to come from the Seattle Seahawks in 2011. "It certainly didn’t seem like it at the time, but on that sloppy November day during the 2011 season, the Ravens were tested and beaten by a championship team that was in its formative stages," Vensel wrote.

  • Coach John Harbaugh's media tour in New York took him to CBS This Morning last weekend, where he said last year's Super Bowl is still not brought up with his brother Jim. "It's off limits," Harbaugh said. "We'd probably get into an argument if we did that."