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C. Brown helps hold patchwork secondary together


C. Brown helps hold patchwork secondary together

As the Ravens went through their paces at training camp, there was a lot of speculation over who would be  playing cornerback opposite Lardarius Webb. Would it be Cary Williams or Jimmy Smith?

Many people expected  Smith, a former first-round draft pick, to ultimately seize the starting spot. He would join Webb, who signed a long-term contract in the offseason and was emerging as one of the game's top young cornerbacks.

Yet as the Cowboys marched down the field on a potential game-tying touchdown drive in the fourth quarter on Sunday, neither Webb nor Smith were anywhere to be found. Instead, Williams manned one corner slot, with Chykie Brown at the other and Corey Graham, primarily brought in as a special teamer, filling the role as the nickel back. Safety James Ihedigbo, another special teamer who joined the team late in preseason, played as a dime back.

That is definitely not how the Ravens drew it up in June.

"Our guys stepped up in the face of some real adversity," coach John Harbaugh said.

"Throughout the game, we had guys going in there to play positions that they hadn't played," he added. " We had packages that we hadn't had a chance to practice, and guys were stepping up and getting the job done."

The Ravens took the 'next man up,' mantra to a new level in their 31-29 win over Dallas on Sunday, where it was, as Smith said, more a case of "the next six guys up."  The brutal war of attrition cost the Ravens, one time or another, as many as six key defensive players. The worst of the injuries appear to be to Webb (possibly torn left ACL) and linebacker Ray Lewis (triceps).

Even after Webb went down -- his knee seemed to buckle as he got tangled up with Cowboys receiver Dez Bryant in the first quarter -- the Ravens were still in good hands with Williams and Smith. But then Smith left the game late with a leg injury.

Enter Brown, primarily a special teamer whose roster spot wasn't even secured until the final round of cuts. Brown, a fifth-round draft pick out of Texas in 2011, had seen very little action in the secondary until the final minutes against Dallas.

As to be expected, the Cowboys went right after him. Brown was flagged for pass interference in the final minute on a pass intended for Kevin Ogletree down the right sideline. The 20-yard penalty helped set up the Cowboys' potentially game-winning 51-yard field-goal attempt, which Dan Bailey pulled wide left.

"It's hard for corners to go through a whole season without getting some kind of injury," Brown said. "Every game I come in knowing my number could be called. You gotta be ready. Until then, I do my thing on special teams. Once my number gets called on defense, then I can make a name for myself on defense."


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


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!

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Vegas odds against Lamar Jackson starting for Ravens in 2018

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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.