Peyton Manning and the rest of Broncos organization say there is not a revenge feeling about this game, but no one believe them. The Denver Broncos and the Baltimore Ravens open the season this Thursday in a highly anticipated matchup, at 8:30 PM ET at Sports Authority Field at Mile High.
“This is a new season for us,” Manning said. “We’re playing a new team.”
“They’ve replaced some really good players with another round of good players, brought in some experience, some athleticism. Until you’ve played them, you probably don’t know them as well,” Manning said.
The Broncos lost at home 38-35 to the Ravens despite they were leading by a touchdown with less than a minute remaining in the game clock.
“It’s one of these budding rivalries, it seems like, that come around in the National Football League, and we’re proud to be a part of that,” coach John Harbaugh said. “We’re glad that we’re good enough to make it a good game.”
Peyton Manning will face a different defense than in 2013; for instance, DE Elvis Dumervil used to play for the Broncos, now he will be trying to sack Manning. Also, Ed Reed, Ray Lewis and Bernard Pollard are all gone, but the Ravens brought new talent.
Joe Flacco will have to face the Broncos defense without Dennis Pitta (hip injury) and Anquan Boldin (now with the 49ers); WR Torrey Smith is the only weapon available from that win in January.
Baltimore is 3-9 straight up in its last 12 games when playing on the road against Denver. The Ravens open the NFL as champions, but betting underdogs of 9.5 points on the road.