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The last time the Ravens began a season with a 5-1 record, it was 2000, the season they won Super Bowl XXXV.
This weekend, the Ravens (4-1) have the rare opportunity to repeat that feat against the New England Patriots (3-1).
But heading into the game, Baltimore isn’t looking at whether a victory at Gillette Stadium results in a Vince Lombardi Trophy.
“By Week 6, you start to determine, maybe, a little bit where you’re at now,” Ravens Head Coach John Harbaugh said in his Monday press conference. “It starts to shake out a little bit, and it seems like this year… It’s unpredictable.
“What you see now won’t be the same six weeks from now. There will be a lot of changes. There will be teams that seem like they’re down and out, and they’ll win five games in a row and they’ll be right back in it.”
Still, the Ravens are topping more than a few power polls after their 31-17 beat-down of the Denver Broncos on Sunday.
Up until then, Baltimore pulled out one-, seven- and three-point wins. The Ravens’ matchup with Denver was decidedly more convincing, as the Broncos needed a long-bomb touchdown with under a minute left to pull as close as they did.
According to Harbaugh, it doesn’t matter if esteemed pundits like SI.com’s Peter King tabbed the Ravens as the NFL’s best club, even though he did this week.
“We know that it means absolutely nothing, because the very next week, the same guys that have got us up there this week had us way down there two or three weeks ago,” Harbaugh noted. “So, we don’t care. I said it before: It’s irrelevant to us. We just think it’s all just hot air. It’s fun for the fans, I guess, and all that.”
If anything, Harbaugh would rather be counted out, just as his playoff teams from 2008 and 2009 regularly were.
“Anytime they’re saying nice things about you, we’re very wary about that,” Harbaugh said. “We like it when you guys don’t say nice things about us. We like to read that. That’s motivational.”