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Back spasms sideline Birk

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Back spasms sideline Birk

Ravens coach John Harbaugh revealed Friday why center Matt Birk hasnt practiced since last weekend.

Matt has had some back spasms, Harbaugh said after the teams daily training camp practice in Owings Mills.

Birks continued absence is attributable to both me and Matt, Harbaugh continued. Matts had the back spasms and Im probably going to slow him down a little more, especially this week.

The Ravens open their preseason schedule Thursday night in Atlanta, and it sounds as if Birk wont play.

Maybe after the game well get him back, Harbaugh said.

The coach didnt seem overly concerned. This time a year, Birk, 36, was coming back from knee surgery and sat out much of training camp and the entire preseason. But then he started every game for the Ravens in the regular season and playoffs, and after contemplating retirement, elected to re-sign with the Ravens, landing a three-year, 8.5 million deal.

Nonetheless, the news of a new health issue for Birk is only going to fuel speculation about whether he is capable of holding up for an entire season in his 15th year in the NFL. He has dealt with several knee issues in the past few years and underwent a procedure to repair the varicose veins in his legs in June.

Now he has a sore back, too.

In other injury news:

Defensive end Arthur Jones underwent an MRI on his hip. Hes had a hip flexor issue. We dont know the results (of the MRI) yet, Harbaugh said.

Cornerback Jimmy Smith left practice Thursday because his back locked up, Harbaugh said. Its a muscular thing, nothing serious, something he dealt with in college. It should take a couople of days.

Rookie linebacker Courtney Upshaw missed another practice Friday with a bruised shoulder. Like Birk, he hasnt practiced since last weekend.

Fullback Vonta Leach sat out Fridays practice because of back spasms, and David Reed (knee), Jah Reid (calf) and Bernard Pierce (hamstring) were among those who also didnt practice.

Harbaugh said that Bryant McKinnie's sore back, which reportedly kept him from reporting on time to training camp, has cleard up. McKinnie passed his conditioning test Friday and returned to practice.

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Ravens lower concession prices at M&T Bank Stadium ahead of 2018 season

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USA TODAY Sports

Ravens lower concession prices at M&T Bank Stadium ahead of 2018 season

Enjoying a game at M&T Bank Stadium just became a little more affordable.

On Thursday, the Ravens introduced their new "Flock Friendly Fare," reducing the price of 21 of their most popular food and beverage items.  

The change comes as the organization focuses on revamping the fan experience in 2018. Fans will see an average of 33 percent in total savings and up to 53 percent savings on a single item.  

"As a lot of you probably know, after every game we survey fans to see how we're doing; what have we done well and what have we not done well. Over the years, one of the biggest criticisms we received was for the gameday concessions prices," Ravens President Dick Cass said on the team's website

Alcoholic beverages were all reduced by $1 with the addition of domestic 12 ounce beer for $5.

Chicken tenders with fries went from $11 to $7, while a slice of pizza went from $8.50 to $6. No single item will cost above $9.

On average, you will now be able to feed a family of four for $44 compared to $66.75 in years past. To see all of the reductions, click the arrow in the post below. 

In 2017, the Atlanta Falcons reduced their concession prices upon opening their brand new Mercedes-Benz Stadium. The Ravens, however, are expecting to lose $1.5 million in concession revenue due to the change. 

Introducing our new Flock Friendly Fare!

A post shared by Baltimore Ravens (@ravens) on

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Vegas odds against Lamar Jackson starting for Ravens in 2018

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AP Images

Vegas odds against Lamar Jackson starting for Ravens in 2018

Vegas has spoken and they are not optimistic about rookie Lamar Jackson starting under center for the Ravens in 2018.

Bovado, an online gambling site, has set the odds on how the top 2018 rookies will perform and they have Jackson getting 0.5 starts this season.

That number will come as a surprise considering the popular narrative that Lamar Jackson will be the Ravens' starter in no time. The team made it clear they are planning for life after Flacco when they traded back into the first-round of the 2018 draft to select the quarterback out of Louisville at No. 32

Flacco - who is entering his 11th season with the organization - is experiencing a decline in his performance of late, one that can not be put entirely on his shoulders as the team has failed in finding him valuable weapons to throw to. Nonetheless, Flacco's projected 2018 season is very much up in the air and it appears Vegas is betting on the one-time Super Bowl MVP to bounce back. 

However, the Ravens have failed to make the playoffs four of the last five seasons, and if that trend continues into 2018, the rookie could get his shot at flipping the script.

If you're a betting man, it could payoff to bet the over on Jackson. Low risk, seemingly high reward. 

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