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Loyal to friends, Harbaugh won't pick Super Bowl

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Loyal to friends, Harbaugh won't pick Super Bowl

Ravens coach John Harbaugh wasn’t willing to pick a winner for Super Bowl 50 when reached by telephone Thursday. Too many coaching friends and former players on both teams. Too much respect for both teams.

However, Harbaugh had this to say when asked about Panthers quarterback Cam Newton.

“Everybody’s unique in their own way,” Harbaugh said. “Tom Brady’s incredibly unique in his own way. Peyton (Manning) has been unique in his own way. All the great ones are unique in their own way.

“The thing that makes Cam unique is the fact that he is such an incredible size, speed athlete. He has that ability at a world-class level, and he can really throw the football. All the great quarterbacks can really throw the football. All of those guys are highly-accurate, and they have arm strength. That’s something that the great ones, in my mind, have in common. The difference is the other intangibles they bring to the table. And his athleticism, obviously, is what makes him unique without question. I don’t know if there’s been another one that throws like he does, and has his size-speed characteristics.”

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Harbaugh said he had spoken to Panthers coach Ron Rivera several times during the playoffs, and had shared texts with Broncos coach Gary Kubiak. Neither has been to a Super Bowl before as a head coach, although Kubiak has been to six previous Super Bowls as an assistant coach or player.

Harbaugh has fond memories of his only Super Bowl trip as a head coach. The Ravens defeated the 49ers, 34-31, in Super Bowl XLVII, racing to a 28-6 lead in the third quarter, before a power outage at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome halted play and helped change the game’s momentum.

The Ravens were obviously not hampered by the distractions of Super Bowl week. So what was Harbaugh’s approach?

“When we left for the second week, the game plan was pretty much done, prepared, and practiced,” Harbaugh said. “With the distractions that you might have, we didn’t want to be trying to do all that stuff the second week. We had a good opportunity that first week to get a lot of work behind us. We game-planned the first week as if the game was one week away, not two weeks.”

Asked what kind of game he expected Sunday, Harbaugh said a high-scoring affair favored the Panthers.

“If it’s a defensive game, it will go right to the end,” Harbaugh said. “It it’s a high-scoring game, you have to assume it’s going to be Carolina. But then again, you never know, because turnovers are the chemical mix that blows everything up.”

So deep down, who does Harbaugh like? Too hard for Harbaugh. Kubiak was the Ravens' offensive coordinator in 2014, and several ex-Ravens could be key figures Sunday - Panthers left tackle Michael Oher and kicker Graham Gano; and Broncos tight end Owen Daniels and safety Darian Stewart.

“That’s going to be impossible for me to pick one over the other,” Harbaugh said laughing. “Nice try, though.”

MORE RAVENS: Following Kubiak has been good for ex-Raven Daniels

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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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