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Gordon proves a nice supplement for Browns

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Gordon proves a nice supplement for Browns

It's possible that a few years down the road, one of the great picks of the 2012 NFL draft will prove to be someone who wasn't even picked in the regular draft.

Browns receiver Josh Gordon was taken in the second round of the supplemental draft in July, nearly three months after the regular NFL Draft. After a slow start, Gordon is starting to deliver on the promise he showed at Baylor.

To review, players land in the supplemental draft for a variety of reasons, often complicated and rarely good.  In Gordon's case, he had starred alongside Robert Griffin III at Baylor in 2010, catching 42 passes for 714 yards and 10 touchdowns. But then he was suspended from the team for failing a marijuana test and ultimately transferred to Utah. He sat out the 2011 season as a transfer, and then left Utah and threw his name into the supplemental draft.

In the supplemental draft, a team can pick an available player in any round, but the the team forfeits the corresponding pick in the following season's regular draft.

Gordon, a 6-foot-3, 225-pounder, was seen as having a lot of athleticism and good hands, but he also had off-field baggage and had been away from the game for a year. Most pundits projected him as a third- or fourth-round supplemental pick, but the Browns jumped in and used a second-round pick on him.

"We are getting a really good football player and we are getting him a year early," Browns general manager Tom Heckert said at the time. "I think next year we will be sitting there going, 'Wow.' If he plays like we think he is going to play this year, I think it will obviously be a good decision."

Supplemental picks have rarely proved to be top-of-the-depth-chart talent, but the Browns clearly think Gordon can be the exception, as was another former Browns supplemental draft pick -- quarterback Bernie Kosar.

Gordon was not a factor in the first meeting between the Ravens and Browns, with just one catch for 16 yards. But since then, he has become one of quarterback Brandon Weeden's favorite targets.

Gordon has had four touchdown catches in the past four games and leads the team with 379 receiving yards. He is averaging 22.3 yards a catch and has given a spark to a Browns passing attack that the past few years has been hurt by receivers prone to dropping passes.

Ravens corners, particularly Jimmy Smith, have struggled defending the double move up the sideline, and you can bet the Browns and Gordon have noticed that on film.

 “I think he’s shown me that he’s got a chance to be a pretty darn good player," Browns coach Pat Shurmur said. "Now, how far he goes with that we’ll see, but I’m seeing steady improvement. I think it’s fair to say the light has gone on a little bit."

 

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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!

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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. 

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