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Losing Roethlisberger changes matchup vs. Ravens


Losing Roethlisberger changes matchup vs. Ravens

With one sack of Ben Roethlisberger, the tenor of Sunday’s prime-time matchup between the Pittsburgh Steelers and Ravens has changed.

Roethlisberger left in the third quarter of a 16-13 overtime victory against the Kansas City Chiefs with an injury to his right (throwing) shoulder when he was sandwiched by linebackers Justin Houston and Tamba Hali.

He appeared unable to lift it, left Heinz Field for an MRI and was replaced by Byron Leftwich. If Roethlisberger’s shoulder is separated, it doesn’t bode well for a team that already has been without safety Troy Polamalu (calf) and lost safety Ryan Clark with a head injury during the Chiefs game.

Roethlisberger was 9-for-18 for 84 yards and one touchdown before leaving the game. Leftwich finished 7-for-14 for 74 yards. Two of the next three games for the Steelers (6-3) are against the Ravens (7-2), who lead the AFC North.

“The great thing about Byron is he’s got a very consistent demeanor, a very calming presence,” said Pittsburgh coach Mike Tomlin, who refused to speculate about not having Roethlisberger going forward. “It wasn’t a pretty body of work by any of us, but his consistency remains the same in terms of being a stabilizing force for us. We appreciate him.”

They have five division games remaining, including matchups vs. the San Diego Chargers and Dallas Cowboys. If Roethlisberger has more than a mild separation, the time he'd miss would be significant.

“Ben Roethlisberger’s injury is bigger than this game. They got away with the win against a poor team,” analyst Trent Dilfer, the quarterback who led the Ravens to their only Super Bowl title, said on ESPN after the game. “The Pittsburgh Steelers are trying to win the Super Bowl. … You lose a guy like this and you have Baltimore coming up twice on your schedule, you’re trying to win the division get home-field, this could be a season-defining injury if it is the second degree-type separated shoulder.”

Fellow analyst Steve Young weighed in how going with Leftwich severely alters Pittsburgh’s game plan for Baltimore and beyond.

“He’s got to make some throws. You eliminate all kinds of plays in your playbook because Ben is a little more nifty in the pocket, outside the pocket, on the move,” he said. “You’re not going to get everything, obviously, with Byron Leftwich but you can see a veteran player making big throws in big moments so that’s the positive of having a guy like that that’s been around a while.”

There is a chance Roethlisberger could try and play, but that wouldn’t be easy.

“If he does try to man up and play next week … every time you fall on your right side any way like this, it can get re-injured so easily. I can’t see this being a short-term thing,” said Dilfer, who claims to have had multiple separations. “He’s as tough as a guy as there is in this league playing quarterback, based on my history -- I’ve had 11 of them -- I don’t see this being a short-term injury.”

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Joe Flacco not at all concerned with Jalen Ramsey's 'he sucks' comment

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Joe Flacco not at all concerned with Jalen Ramsey's 'he sucks' comment

After spending 10 years in the National Football League, Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco has been called just about everything.

His "eliteness" has been in question ever since winning the Super Bowl during the 2012-13 season, and while Flacco is known for his "cool as a cucumber" demeanor, he still hears all the noise.

In an interview with GQ, Jaguars cornerback Jalen Ramsey gave an uncensored review on some of the league's top players. When asked what he thinks of Flacco, Ramsey responded with "And just being honest about it, [Joe] Flacco sucks. I played him two years in a row. He sucks."

Just one of several QBs Ramsey took a shot at, Flacco will be adding his comment to the laundry list of opinions.

“I don’t really have much of a comment,” Flacco said, via the Baltimore Sun. “I don’t really care. There’s plenty of people out there saying things. Just add one more to the list. No big deal.”

After finishing the 2017 season with 3,141 yards, 18 touchdowns, and 13 interceptions, there were a lot of opinions surrounding Flacco's future with the team. Those opinions ramped up when the Ravens traded up in the first round of the 2018 NFL Draft to select Heisman Trophy winner Lamar Jackson.

But Flacco has begun quieting those doubters with what has been his strongest and healthiest training camp in years. And with Jackson still adjusting to NFL style of play, the 2018 season is Flacco's time to prove he's still got it.

While Ramsey isn't too high on Flacco, the All-Pro cornerback foresees a successful career for Jackson.

"I would've picked [Lamar Jackson] earlier than 32," Ramsey said. "I think he's gonna do a good job. Especially with the [Baltimore Ravens'] offensive coordinator—he likes running quarterbacks, likes that read option."

Among other QBs Ramsey sounded off on was Bills first-round draft pick Josh Allen, who he called "trash," said Ben Roethlisberger is "decent at best" and that Jared Goff is "average to above average."



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Ravens vs. Colts preseason: Date, time, TV channel, live stream, how to watch

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Ravens vs. Colts preseason: Date, time, TV channel, live stream, how to watch

After 10 days and two testy joint practices with the Colts, Ravens football is back.

The guys are in Indianapolis to take on the Colts in their third preseason game of the season. You can expect to see Lamar Jackson and RGIII getting more reps in, but it's unclear how much of Andrew Luck we'll see after he missed the entire 2017 season with a shoulder injury.

While the joint practices brought a few brawls, head coach John Harbaugh has been nothing but impressed with how his team has been handling training camp and the preseason thus far.

"I think about as good as [I’ve] ever seen,” Harbaugh said via the Ravens' website. “I’d have to say our best camp in terms of guys focused on improving every day and becoming one percent better at what they do from one day to the next and keep building on that. That’s what I’m proud of.”

Ahead of their matchup, here's everything you need to know to watch.

Ravens vs. Colts Preseason Game:

Who: Baltimore Ravens vs. Indianapolis Colts 

What: Preseason Week 3

When: Monday, Aug. 20, 2018, 8:00 p.m. ET

Where: Lucas Oil Stadium, Indianapolis, Indiana 

TV Channel: ESPN

Live Stream: WatchESPN

Radio: WBAL New Radio 1090 and 98Rock, ESPN Radio

Weather: 78 degrees, scattered thunderstorms

Preseason Schedule:

Hall of Fame Game: Thurs., 8/2 vs. Chicago Bears. 8:00 p.m. (W: 17-16) 

Week 1: Thurs., 8/9, vs. Los Angeles Rams, 7:30 p.m. (W: 33-7)

Week 2: Mon., 8/20, at Indianapolis Colts (Monday Night Football, ESPN), 8:00 p.m. 

Week 3: Sat., 8/25 at Miami Dolphins, 7:00 p.m.

Week 4: Thurs., 8/30 vs. Washington Redskins, 7:30 p.m.

Ravens 2018 Regular Season Schedule:

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Week 10:  BYE week

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

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

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

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

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

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

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