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Past motivates Ellerbe to excel

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Past motivates Ellerbe to excel

There's an emptiness in the locker room for Dannell Ellerbe.

Without Ray Lewis and Lardarius Webb, both out for the season with injuries, the atmosphere undoubtedly has changed.

"It feels different without them guys. You can notice when one of your teammates gone, when they're hurt," said Ellerbe, the starting weak-side linebacker. "Webb's locker is right beside mine. We talk junk and joke every day.

"Me and Ray Lewis are in the same (linebacker) meetings. It's different without hearing him comment on things to help us get better, the stuff he knows through 17 years and the stuff he give us to take with us."

Players have fielded so many questions about whether or not they talked with Lewis and his torn triceps, Webb seems forgotten. He is the Ravens' best cornerback and was having an All-Pro season before tearing a knee ligament in last week's 31-29 win vs. the Dallas Cowboys.

"He was devastated because it was his second one but he's trying to keep his spirits up," Ellerbe said. "I told him he went through it before, he knows what he's going to have to do to get back so he 'll come back stronger. He promises he'll do it."

The good news for the Ravens is that they went 4-0 without Lewis last season when he was out with turf toe. Of course, they had Webb and eventual 2011 Defensive Player of the Year Terrell Suggs (Achilles), too. What was the secret then?

"We knew all eyes was going to be on us and we didn't want to let the team down. We don't want to put bad film out on our defense because its still our defense without starters or whoever," Ellerbe said. "It's still the Ravens defense."

They done plenty to scar their reputation this season. The Ravens' defense gave up a franchise-record 227 rushing yards to the Cowboys last week. In the game before that, the Kansas City Chiefs rushed for 214. They're just 26th in overall defense.

In Houston, they'll be facing Arian Foster who is arguably the NFL's best running back and a dual threat as a receiver. Containing him could give the Ravens' defense a confidence boost, but it won't wipe the taste out of their mouths from what has happened recently.

"We can go out here and play good but I don't think it task away what we did the last two weeks. Somebody set a record on us so it's always going to be there," Ellerbe said. "Only thing we can do is go out, focus on this game, start here and get back to the run-stopping defense that we have been."

While key figures on the defense have been annoyed by their performance in recent weeks, and constantly hearing about it, Ellerbe isn't among them.

"You need to hear things like that to keep you grinding, keep you on our toes and keep you striving to be better," he said.

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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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AP Images

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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