The saying goes that if you won the Super Bowl in the season prior, it’s hard to repeat because you play the following season with a target on your back. Everyone comes into your game looking to make a statement against the reigning champs. But Baltimore Ravens wide receiver Torrey Smith says that the defending champs aren’t feeling any pressure.
“I feel like there’s no pressure at all,” Smith said in an interview on NFL Network’s Total Access. “Because nobody expected us to be there in the first place, so the defending title thing is kind of overblown.”
It also probably is a reflection of the perceived dismantling of a championship team. Defensive leader and face of the franchise linebacker Ray Lewis retired. Safety Ed Reed signed with Houston, safety Bernard Pollard is with the Tennessee Titans. They traded wide receiver Anquan Boldin to the San Francisco 49ers. Linebacker Dannell Ellerbe went to South Beach and Paul Kruger to Cleveland.
So yes expectations are lower.
“I think we have the potential to be better than we were last year,” Smith said. “We’ve got trust in the guy up top (general manager Ozzie Newsome). All the young guys we’ve been developing and working hard over the last few years, it’s our time to go out there and do it. We just have to go work. Nothing is going to be given to us. We understand that and we have a lot to prove come the 25th.”