The last time we saw Flacco on a football field, he was holding the Lombardi Trophy on his way to becoming a very rich man. He won't be quite so happy Thursday night. Neither will anyone who starts him.
It may be an ugly week for the defending Super Bowl champs, but Rice will give his fantasy owners the sort of high-floor production they expect of him from week to week.
Pierce may end up playing a larger role later in the season, but he'll be sqeezed from the gameplan after the Broncos jump on top. You shouldn't have to consider starting him this week.
With Pitta out and Anquan Boldin in San Francisco, much of the receiving burden will fall to Smith. He'll make good on that -- at least for his fantasy owners -- against the Broncos.
It was supposed to be Dennis Pitta in this spot, but his season-ending hip injury deprived Joe Flacco of one of his favorite targets. Dickson may be a bye-week replacement, but you don't want anything to do with him this week.
With an early deficit, Tucker will have a relatively boring night Thursday. He'll be perfect on his attempts, though.
This ain't your older sibling's Ravens defense, and it will show Week 1. The Broncos will make a lot of defenses look bad this year, but this trend will continue for the Ravens all season.
Just last week I predicted Manning would throw 45 touchdown passes this year. It all starts Week 1, as he'll toss two scores to Demaryius Thomas and one apiece to Eric Decker and Montee Ball.
Ball won't waste any time starting his ascension to the top of the depth chart in Denver. He'll lead the team in carries and sneak in the end zone on a middle screen, rewarding owners who continued to show faith in him late in draft season.
Hillman continues a troubling pattern begun in the preseason, losing a fumble for Denver's only turnover. After that, John Fox gives the lion's share of the work to Montee Ball.
Moreno will get a little burn on opening night, but it'll take an injury to Ball or Hillman for him really to get involved in the offense.
Thomas will kick off the 2013 season in a big way, catching eight balls for 121 yards and two scores. He'll score the first touchdown of the season on a 32-yard strike from Peyton Manning.
Decker will finish with the fewest catches among the great receiving triumvirate in Denver this week, but he'll find the end zone on a 19-yard hookup with Peyton Manning.
Welker begins his Broncos career in true Welker fashion: 11 catches, 97 yards, with all but three of his catches resulting in first downs. His PPR owners are smiling.
Thomas will emerge as Manning's go-to tight end this week, but that is always subject to change. Either way, it's the receivers who dominate this offense.
A ho-hum night for Prater, who will trot out for just one field goal attempt with Peyton Manning hogging most of the offensive glory on opening night.
Even without Von Miller, the Broncos defense will get off to a good start in 2013. Of course, it'll help when Peyton Manning and the offense hand it a 14-0 lead.
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