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Has Ravens WR Smith Sr. already secured spot in Hall of Fame?

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Has Ravens WR Smith Sr. already secured spot in Hall of Fame?

What will the future debate about Steve Smith Sr.'s Hall of Fame credentials be like?

One day, Smith will be in the same position that wide receivers Terrell Owens and Marvin Harrison are in this week – waiting to hear if they will be inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

Smith is already Hall of Fame worthy in my opinion, and his decision to play another season with the Ravens will only strengthen his case. However, the debate about what makes a Hall of Fame receiver is interesting. Former Rams coach Mike Martz is upset that former Rams receivers Isaac Bruce and Torry Holt are not Hall of Fame finalists this year, while Owens is. The next Hall of Fame class will be announced Saturday, the day before Super Bowl 50.

“You can’t print how I felt when T. O. leapfrogged those two,” Martz told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. “That’s just plain out-and-out ridiculous.

“If they big-timed it and did all that dumb stuff, they’d get in probably earlier. I think they’ll eventually get in. I don’t think that’s an issue, but it’s tragic that people think of them like that. If Marvin Harrison gets in, how could they not get in?”

When you look at wide receivers, you have to look beyond numbers, and that’s why Smith passes the Hall of Fame eye test for me. He’s unique. He has been a game-breaker due to his ability to run after the catch, and to run any route. He has been a superb possession receiver due to his hands, body control, leaping ability, and toughness. His career has stood the test of time, and he has been consistent, with eight 1000-yard seasons.

Smith has done all of this at just 5-foot-9, playing for many years in a Panthers offense that was run-first oriented. By the end of next season, Smith should rank in the top 10 all-time in receiving yards, and he should have over 1,000 career catches.

The Hall of Fame competition at wide receiver is only going to get more crowded, with Reggie Wayne retiring recently, and Smith, Andre Johnson, and Larry Fitzgerald all beyond 30 years old. But for 15 years, it has been difficult for cornerbacks to defend Smith. It should be difficult to keep Smith out of the Hall of Fame as well.

[RELATED: Wentz rising stock could add value to Ravens' pick]

  

 

 

 

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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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