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Raiders-Ravens preview

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Raiders-Ravens preview

Ravens vs. Raiders
at M&T Bank Stadium, 1 p.m. ET

The line: Ravens -9.

Last week: Ravens (6-2) beat the Cleveland Browns 25-15; Raiders (3-5) lost 42-32 to the Tampa Bay Bucs.

Series: Ravens lead, 6-1. The Raiders' only victory was Dec. 14, 2003, 20-12.

Last meeting: Ravens won 21-13 in a regular season game on Jan. 3, 2010.
Burning question: Will Joe Flacco return to form at home, where he has played like a top QB early in the season, or continue his streak of four consecutive games with less than 240 yards passing and 56.2% completion rate?

Keys to victory on offense: Without DT Richard Seymour, the Raiders will have even more trouble stuffing the run or pressuring Flacco. The Ravens found something last week with RBs Ray Rice and Bernard Pierce. Expect them to use the same formula, though Rice likely won't need 25 carries in this one. That should mean more work for the rookie, Pierce. The Raiders play a lot of zone coverages, which is good news for TEs Dennis Pitta and Ed Dickson. They need to get involved in the offense again and this is the game to do it. These factors should loosen up the Raiders underneath should open up the deep ball again for Flacco.

Keys to victory on defense: The Ravens bottled up the run in the second half last week against Cleveland's Trent Richardson. With the Raiders missing their two best runners, anything less than a four-quarter shutdown would be a disappointment. QB Carson Palmer threw 61 times last week and has thrown fewer than 33 passes only once. The retooled Ravens secondary with CBs Cary Williams, Jimmy Smith and Corey Graham.

Injury report: RAVENS -- Out: DE Pernell McPhee (thigh); Questionable: DT Haloti Ngata (shoulder), G Bobbie Williams (ankle), G Marshal Yanda (ankle); Probable: LB Josh Bynes (thigh), S Sean Considine (chest), LS Morgan Cox (shoulder), LB Dannell Ellerbe (finger),  WR Jacoby Jones (toe), DT Ma'ake Kemoeatu (knee), T Michael Oher (ankle), S Bernard Pollard (chest), S Ed Reed (shoulder/knee), CB Jimmy Smith (abs), LB Terrell Suggs (ankle).

RAIDERS -- Out: RB Darren McFadden (ankle), RB Mike Goodson (ankle), DT Richard Seymour (knee/hamstring), CB Shawntae Spencer (foot); Questionable: T Khalif Barnes (groin); Probable: T Willie Smith (knee), FB Marcel Reece (hamstring), TE Richard Gordon (hamstring), TE Brandon Myers (shoulder), K Sebastian Janikowski (groin), LB Miles Burris (elbow), LB Keenan Clayton (shoulder), DT Desmond Bryant (cardiac), DE Matt Shaughnessy (shoulder), DE David Tollefson (shoulder), CB Coye Francies (thumb), S Mike Mitchell (finger), S Matt Giordano (hamstring).

Prediction: Ravens 34-17.

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Baltimore Ravens Roundup: Ravens place Marquise Brown, Jaylon Ferguson on reserve/NFI list

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Baltimore Ravens Roundup: Ravens place Marquise Brown, Jaylon Ferguson on reserve/NFI list

With training camp just six days away, here is the latest news surrounding the Baltimore Ravens.

1. Ian Rapoport reported that the Ravens have placed Marquise Brown, Jaylon Ferguson and two others on the reserve/NFI list. He later added that Brown is still recovering from Lisfranc surgery but is "progressing well" and Ferguson is dealing with a "minor hamstring" injury.

2. The entire Baltimore Ravens class is officially under contract after the signing of wide receiver Miles Boykin. Boykin was a third-round pick out of Notre Dame.

3. Michael Vick joined The Sports Junkies on 106.7 The Fan Friday morning and when asked which young quarterbacks in the NFL most emulate his style, he answered: "Lamar Jackson" along with Kyler Murray and Cam Newton.

Looking Ahead:

July 24: Ravens training camp begins. Rookies are set to report a week earlier on Wednesday, July 17. 

The 2019 NFL schedule is set! See the Baltimore Ravens defend the AFC North at M&T Bank Stadium this season. Get your tickets now at www.BaltimoreRavens.com/tickets.

Credit: Rotoworld and Baltimore Ravens for news points.

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A big Year 2 ahead, Lamar Jackson isn’t worried about Madden ratings

A big Year 2 ahead, Lamar Jackson isn’t worried about Madden ratings

The number eight is sports royalty in the city of Baltimore thanks to Cal Ripken Jr.

If Lamar Jackson has the career many are hoping for, he’ll be another reason for that one day down the road.

For now, he’s a young, athletic quarterback entering his second season in Charm City. But his successful rookie year hasn’t been reflected in Madden NFL 20’s newest ratings.

Jackson came in with an overall rating of 76, tied for 24th among all quarterbacks. Unsurprisingly, his athleticism is highly-regarded, as he leads all signal-callers in speed, acceleration, agility, and elusiveness.

Questions abound about his throwing abilities, leading to the low rating. But that’s not a concern for Jackson himself.

“I can’t feel no way,” the quarterback told media members prior to throwing out the first pitch at the Orioles-Nationals game Wednesday night. “You know, I don’t make Madden. That’s them. But I feel like our team, we’re going to show ‘em this season.”

Jackson continued to praise the Ravens roster. When asked about the high ratings for teammates like Marquise “Hollywood” Brown and Earl Thomas, Jackson put his thoughts quite succinctly: “We look stacked!”

Of course, with speed and acceleration ratings like Jackson has, it’s fun to imagine how he might fit in on a baseball diamond as well.

“Whew, somewhere in the middle, to make a play,” Orioles manager Brandon Hyde decided when asked where the Ravens quarterback might play on his roster.

“I’m looking forward to meeting him. I’m a big football fan, so watched him play a lot. And if he wanted to play center field or up the middle, it’d be great,” Hyde continued.

The speedy quarterback agreed, though it came with a caveat.

“Probably,” Jackson quickly answered when asked about his best fit being center field. “But you know, I’m the Ravens QB right now, so I’m good.”

He doesn’t know what his walk-up song would be if he played baseball, but Jackson was definitive about one thing at least: his hot dog preferences.

“I don’t really eat mustard,” he emphasized. “So I just put ketchup, relish...I just go from there. Pretty standard.”

When he’s not eating hot dogs, Jackson is working hard to build chemistry with his new receiving corps, and he seemed optimistic about the results it will bring on the field.

“Looking pretty good,” he described. “You’ll have to see for yourself.”

Knowing how many dual Orioles and Ravens fans there are in Baltimore, Jackson was also happy to provide a little hope as the city’s attention starts to shift from baseball to football. He gave a message to O’s fans who have sat through months of losing baseball and are looking to the Ravens to bring winning back to the city.

“Look forward to us coming out and balling,” he said. “Can’t say too much right now, [the] season’s not here!”

The Ravens season will be here soon enough, and when it is, Jackson will be ready to go out and show both local and national fans what he can do, regardless of what his Madden rating says.

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