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Smith Sr. gives time to kids, but gives no clue about his future

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Smith Sr. gives time to kids, but gives no clue about his future

OWINGS MILLS – Ravens wide receiver Steve Smith gets around on a stand-up scooter these days, but still knows how to be a difference maker.

Smith was one of many players shopping with Baltimore area youngsters Monday, helping the Ravens with their 11th annual Holiday Helpers event. Ravens helped kids at the Target of Owings Mills, acting as their personal helpers as they went on a shopping spree for their families.

Smith refused to discuss his future, and whether he planned to retire or return to the Ravens next season. Due to surgery on his torn Achilles, Smith’s injured leg was elevated as he moved around the store on a personalized scooter. Smith said it had been difficult needing help with everyday tasks.

“It’s been a real challenge because of the helplessness that I’ve felt, and I say the burden I’ve put on my wife,” Smith said. “We have an 18-month old, and a 36-year-old that needs help with things. For the first two weeks, just getting clothes off and doing all that stuff was difficult, because I had a cast. I had a bag over my leg to take a shower. The first seven days I didn’t even leave the house.

“It’s been tough. If this event was three weeks ago, I wouldn’t be as smiling. I was down and depressed, feeling a certain way.”

However, Smith was talking trash as he shopped. He has an ongoing battle with Ravens running back Justin Forsett about which player is taller. Smith told the kids shopping with Forsett, “Let me know if you need help getting something that’s high up on the shelves. He (Forsett) can’t reach it.”

While Smith was having fun, he also asked kids to think about others in their family as they shopped.

“We’re not only giving them an opportunity to shop, we’re also telling them, “Hey, you got any other family members that you think you can help out, that need something?”’ Smith said. “We got one kid, he was like, ‘Oh, I want to get a watch for my grandmother.’ Those are the important things, for him to get this opportunity, but to also be selfless. What else can I do for someone else?”

Smith was asked what one thing he wanted for Christmas.

“A healthy Achilles,” Smith said.

An early Christmas present for Ravens’ fans would be for Smith to announce that he plans to return next season. But if that announcement is coming, it will have to wait.

MORE RAVENS: CLAUSEN (YES, THAT CLAUSEN) MADE HISTORY ON SUNDAY

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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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