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Spotlight on: Pernell McPhee

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Spotlight on: Pernell McPhee

(One of a series of articles exploring the status of individual players on the Ravens as the 2012 season approaches.)

You could make a case for Ravens defensive end Pernell McPhee being one the biggest steals of the entire 2011 NFL draft.

Taken by the Ravens in the fifth round as the 165th overall selection, McPhee quickly played his way onto the field, primarily as a rush specialist on third downs. He piled up six sacks, finishing second on the team in that category behind Terrell Suggs.

The stat wonks at Pro Football Focus fell headlong in love with him, labeling him as the Ravens secret superstar and claiming he either sacked or pressured opposing quarterbacks on 9.2 percent of his plays, a ratio any player would take,

With the departure of veteran Cory Redding to Indianapolis as a free agent, a starting job has opened up for either McPhee or Arthur Jones, the Ravens fifth-round pick in 2010, who plays the same position. Both are expected to see plenty of playing time, but the Ravens would love to see one "break out" and establish himself as a defensive cornerstone.

Having accomplished more than Jones in less time in the league, McPhee would seem the likelier candidate for that; the only rookies who had more sacks than McPhee last season were San Francisco linebacker Aldon Smith (13), Denver linebacker Von Miller (11.5), Cleveland defensive end Jabaal Sheard (8.5) and Tennessee defensive tackle Karl Klug (7), all starters other than Klug.

As it was, McPhee finished 23rd in the NFL in sacks as a rookie in limited playing time, and he recently told the Carroll County Times that he believed he could up his total to 10 in his second season.

He experienced a setback when he had to sit out part of the spring season of OTAs and minicamps because of a minor knee injury that necessitated arthroscopic surgery. But his rehab has gone well, he said, and he expects to be ready for training camp.

Finding players who can pressure quarterbacks is going to be especially important for the Ravens in 2012 because of the absence of Terrell Suggs, out indefinitely with an Achilles injury. Suggs had 14 sacks in 2011, and if you pair that total with those of Redding and other players no longer with the team, the Ravens are missing almost half of their 48 sacks from last season.

Theyre counting on McPhee to help replace some of those missing sacks while also hoping he proves himself able to play the run and grind away in the defensive interior, perhaps as an every-down player.

It's asking a lot, but if McPhee is up to it, his status as one of the Ravens' best draft "steals" would be cemented

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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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