Baltimore Ravens Team History
There's a polite fiction that the Baltimore Ravens entered the NFL as a brand-new franchise in 1996 but in fact, the Cleveland Browns moved to Baltimore and became known as the Ravens.
Once the then Cleveland Browns francise declared it was moving, the league and the city of Cleveland entered into an agreement that the team name and records would remain with the city for eventual use by another NFL franchise.
So with the agreement in place the "new" team had select a new name. NFL properties came up with a list of more than 100 possible nicknames, which were eventually narrowed down to three and the Baltimore Sun conducted a poll of fans to select one. Of 33,288 who phoned in, 21,108 voted for the Ravens which eventually was taken as their new franchise name.
The Ravens have experienced great success in their brief history, making the playoffs nine times between 2000 & 2013, with two Super Bowl victories (2000 and 2013), two AFC Championship titles (2000 and 2012), four AFC North division titles (2003, 2006, 2011 and 2012), and as of the 2013 season, the only team in the NFL to hold a perfect record in multiple Super Bowl appearances.
Baltimore Ravens Chronological History
At the end of the regular NFL season, the Ravens franchise is founded when the Cleveland Browns relocate to Cleveland and change the team name to The Ravens.
The team suffers the typical franchise jinx and finishes at the bottom of their division in the 1996/97 seasons.
The Ravens and Minnesota Vikings set an NFL record with three kickoff returns for touchdowns, all in the first quarter. Ravens Corey Harris, Patrick Johnson and Minnesota's David Palmer all scored TDs on returns in the Vikings 38-28 win. Gary Anderson set an NFL record when he kicked his 34th straight successful field goal, one of six three-pointers on the day for Minnesota.
The Ravens finish the season with 6 wins and 10 losses, a marked improvement from the previous 2 seasons.
The Ravens rebuild the team and construct an iron defensive line.
The Ravens defeated the New York Giants, 34-7, to capture their first-ever World Championship in Super Bowl XXXV played at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, FL. Ray Lewis was named Super Bowl MVP and only Ron Dixon's 97-yard kickoff return for a touchdown averted a shutout for the Giants. A Super Bowl record was set when three touchdowns were scored in a span of 36 seconds, including Duane Starks 49-yard interception return and Jermaine Lewis 84-yard kickoff return.
The Ravens defense set a 16-game record by allowing only 165 total points. Baltimore also set an NFL record by allowing only 970 yards rushing. The Ravens finished 12-4 after beating the New York Jets, 34-20 on Christmas Eve. Rookie RB Jamal Lewis rushed for a team-record 1,364 yards.
NFL owners approved the sale of 49% of the Ravens for $275 million to Anne Arundel County business executive Stephen Bisciotti. Bisciotti has an option to purchase the remaining 51% for $325 million in 2004.
Six Ravens were selected to play in the Pro Bowl, tying the team mark set in 1998. Selected were LB Ray Lewis, T Jonathan Ogden, DT Sam Adams, RS Jermaine Lewis, TE Shannon Sharpe and S Rod Woodson.
The Ravens needed a quarterback but drafting after all the top quarterbacks were gone, used their 10th pick to select Arizona State defensive end Terrell Suggs
Tennessee with a field goal with seconds remaining defeat the Baltimore Ravens with a 20-17 victory in a Wild Card affair that was worthy of its name
The Ravens ended the regular season with a franchise-best 13-3 record. Baltimore had secured the AFC North title, the No. 2 AFC playoff seed, and clinched a 1st-round bye by season's end. Baltimore would lose to the eventual Super Bowl champion Indianapolis Colts in the second round.
A terrible season lead to Billick's dismissal on New Year's Eve, one day after the end of the regular season. He was replaced by John Harbaugh, the special teams coach of the Philadelphia Eagles.
With rookies at head coach (John Harbaugh) and quarterback (Joe Flacco), Baltimore washed away memory of a dismal 2007 season with a return to the playoffs only to fall short of Super Bowl XLIII by losing to the Steelers 23-14 at Heinz Field on January 18, 2009.
Baltimore looses to their arch rival by advancing to the AFC divisional round, where they played Indianapolis. Two touchdowns late in the first half gave the Colts a 17-3 lead at halftime, and Baltimore miscues in the second half ensured the end of their season, by a 20-3 score.
The Ravens accomplished a number of significant achievements during the 2011 season, finishing 6-0 in the division, 6-0 against 2012 playoff teams, and 8-0 at home. After a disappointing game Baltimore would eventually lose to the Patriots in the AFC championship round.
With Ray Lewis announcing his retirement, the Ravens went into the playoffs on a mission. Exorcising some demons the Ravens had to go through the Wild Card to defeat the Indianapolis Colts, Denver Broncos, Tom Brady and New England Patriots and finally the heavily favorite San Franscisco 49ers to win the Super Bowl XLVII champions.
After winning the Superbowl the Ravens had a dissappointing season and lost to the Bengals in their final game to miss the playoffs for the first time since 2007.
Baltimore Ravens Franchise Information
- Franchise Granted: 1996
- First Season: 1996
- Baltimore Ravens (1996 - Present)
On March 29, 1996, Baltimore's NFL team officially became known as the Baltimore Ravens. The Ravens nickname was overwhelmingly selected from among three finalists in a poll conducted by the Baltimore Sun. Baltimore fans selected the name in honor of Edgar Allan Poe, the American poet who penned his famous poem, "The Raven" while living in Baltimore.
Baltimore Ravens - Stadium
M&T Bank Stadium at Camden Yards
1101 Russell Street
Baltimore, MD 21230
Memorial Stadium (1996-1997)
M&T Bank Stadium (1998-present)
also known as PSINet Stadium (1998-2002)
also known as Ravens Stadium (2002-2003)
1996 - 1998
2000 (AFC), 2012 (AFC)
2000 (AFC North), 2003 (AFC North), 2006 (AFC North), 2008 (AFC North), 2011 (AFC North), 2012 (AFC North)
Wild Card Wins
2000 (AFC North), 2001 (AFC North), 2008 (AFC North), 2009 (AFC North), 2010 (AFC North), 2012 (AFC North)
Years in Playoffs
2000, 2001, 2003, 2006, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012
Hall of Fame Members
1996, 1997, 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007