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Brown: Ravens should stick with Clausen

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Brown: Ravens should stick with Clausen

At this point, the Ravens have more to gain starting Jimmy Clausen at quarterback than Matt Schaub.

This isn’t an endorsement for Clausen to be Joe Flacco’s backup next season, at least not yet. But it’s a desire to see more from Clausen, to see if the Ravens need to go shopping for a backup quarterback during the offseason, or if Clausen can handle the job.

Following Sunday’s blowout loss to the Seahawks, Ravens coach John Harbaugh wasn’t ready to name the starting quarterback for Week 15 against the Chiefs.

“I don’t know right now,” Harbaugh said. “We’ll see. We’ll evaluate it going forward I guess is the answer, sure.”

However, Harbaugh did have this to say about Clausen’s performance (23 for 40, 274 yards, no touchdowns, one interception) against the Seahawks.

“It seemed like he did pretty well,” Harbaugh said. “He operated. He has been here for two weeks. I though he did a nice job getting us in and out of plays. We did a lot at the line with him –- that was the game plan. He handled it well…

“I thought he made some good throws. (There were) probably some throws that he would want back. But, going in there, in that situation, and to be under fire like that, against the defense that we were playing, it speaks very well for him. I’m excited for him.”

Sticking with Clausen might seem unfair to Schaub, if Schaub (chest injury) is healthy enough to play against the Chiefs. However, Schaub threw four interceptions during his two starts, including two pick-sixes. Schaub’s problem with committing key turnovers clearly has not been solved. If the Ravens brought Schaub back next season, they would risk seeing more if his throws being brought back for touchdowns.

Clausen is six years younger than the 34 year-old Schaub, and Clausen is more mobile. Clausen showed good arm strength Sunday, with three completions that went for more than 30 yards. Clausen is also familiar with Ravens offensive coordinator Marc Trestman’s system, from their time together with the Bears.

While the Ravens hope Flacco makes a quick recovery from knee surgery, there is no guarantee Flacco will be ready by Week 1 next season. At the very least, next year’s backup will have to take plenty of snaps during training camp and preseason as Flacco progresses.

Giving the Clausen the ball over the last three games gives the Ravens a chance to see more of what he’s got. If Clausen struggles, the Ravens will know he’s not their backup next season. But if Clausen plays well, at least one of the many questions facing the Ravens could be answered.

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Baltimore Ravens' 2018 regular season matchups, dates and times

Baltimore Ravens' 2018 regular season matchups, dates and times

We've known the Ravens' 2018 preseason and regular season opponents for some time now, but the NFL finally released their full schedule with exact dates and times.

As they do every year, the Ravens will be seeing the Bengals, Steelers and Browns twice. 

For the ninth consecutive year, Week 16 and 17 will be divisional games with playoff implications.

The Ravens will also be playing in the Pro Football Hall of Fame preseason game against the Chicago Bears in Canton, Ohio, bringing an extra preseason game to their schedule.

In the regular season, the birds will be flocking south to take on the Panthers, Falcons and Titans. They haven't seen the Panthers or Falcons since 2014 - both ending in wins - and came up just short against the Titans in their 23-20 loss last season.

The Ravens will only have to travel to the west coast once when they take on the Los Angeles Chargers, who they last saw in 2015 and earned a 29-26 win.

Not including AFC North rivals, the last time the Ravens saw their remaining five home opponents they came away with wins. Hopefully history will repeat itself.

Prime-time games, which the Ravens have two of, will kick off at earlier times than in the past. Monday Night Football will now start at 8:15 p.m. while Thursday and Sunday Night Football will start at 8:20 p.m.

Ravens 2018 Regular-Season Schedule:

Week 1: Sunday, 9/9 vs. Bills, 1:00 p.m.

Week 2: Thursday, 9/13 @ Bengals, 8:20 p.m.

Week 3: Sunday, 9/23 vs. Broncos. 1:00 p.m.

Week 4: Sunday, 9/30 @ Steelers, 8:20 p.m.

Week 5: Sunday, 10/7 @ Browns, 1:00 p.m.

Week 6: Sunday 10/14 @ Titans, 4:25 p.m.

Week 7: Sunday, 10/21 vs. Saints, 4:05 p.m.

Week 8: Sunday 10/28 @ Panthers, 1:00 p.m.

Week 9: Sunday 11/4 vs. Steelers, 1:00 p.m.

Week 10:  BYE week

Week 11: Sunday 11/18 vs. Bengals, 1:00 p.m.

Week 12: Sunday 11/25 vs. Raiders, 1:00 p.m.

Week 13: Sunday 12/2 @ Falcons, 1:00 p.m.

Week 14: Sunday 12/9 @ Chiefs, 1:00 p.m.

Week 15: Sunday 12/16 vs. Buccaneers, 1:00 p.m.

Week 16: Saturday 12/22 or Sunday 12/23 @ Chargers, TBD

Week 17: Sunday 12/30 vs. Browns, 1:00 p.m.


PRESEASON 

Hall of Fame Game: Thurs., 8/2, vs. Chicago Bears (Canton, OH), 8:00pm (NBC).

Week 1: Thurs., 8/9, vs. Los Angeles Rams

Week 2: Mon. 8/20,  at Indianapolis Colts (Monday Night Football, ESPN).

Week 3: at Miami Dolphins*

Week 4: Thurs., 8/30 at Washington Redskins

* - Game date and time not yet determined

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As 2018 NFL Draft approaches, Ravens to host QB Lamar Jackson per report

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As 2018 NFL Draft approaches, Ravens to host QB Lamar Jackson per report

With 10 days until the 2018 NFL Draft, quarterback Lamar Jackson is set to visit the Ravens this week, per Ian Rapoport of NFL Network. 

The former Heisman Trophy winner is a projected first-round pick as he has proven to have success in the air and on the ground. 

While at Louisville, Jackson had 9,043 passing yards and 69 touchdowns. He also rushed for 4,132 yards and 50 touchdowns. His NFL draft profile compares him to Michael Vick. 

RELATED: BEST QUOTES FROM RAVENS PRE-DRAFT PRESS CONFERENCE

The Ravens are in search of Joe Flacco's successor, but spending a first-round pick on a quarterback when there are other glaring needs is up in the air. However, assistant general manager Eric DeCosta isn't ruling out the possibility

"I feel like if there is a guy there that we think is really too good to pass up, we're going to take him," DeCosta told the team's website on the chance of drafting a quarterback in the first-round.

At their pre-draft press conference, GM Ozzie Newsome and DeCosta kept reiterating we could be surprised by who they pick at No. 16, if they do at all. 

While Jackson's numbers are impressive, he continues to be considered a late first-round pick as his build isn't up to typical NFL QB standards and scouts are concerned with his accuracy. What he does have in his favor is speed.

While fans are hoping for an offensive weapon, having Jackson learn under Flacco for a year (and maybe RGIII?) could rev up some excitement. 

RELATED: RGIII READY TO MOVE FORWARD AS NEW, GROWN PLAYER