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Texans suffer without Cushing


Texans suffer without Cushing

Before last week, the Houston Texans appeared to be the best team in the AFC.

That's no longer a foregone conclusion, and Sunday's game against the Ravens will determine which 5-1 team gets the nod.

While the Ravens struggled to hold on for a 31-29 win vs. the Dallas Cowboys in giving up a franchise-record 227 yards rushing at home, the Texans were embarrassed by the Green Bay Packers 42-24 at Reliant Stadium.

Is there anything to learn from what Green Bay did that can help Baltimore's chances?

"Everybody has them games where a team just has your number. Green Bay came in with a great plan and executed it," Ravens running back Ray Rice said. "That's not to say they won't show up ready to play on Sunday. … (Winning) this game puts us at the top and everybody else two or three games behind."

The Texans not only were coming off a short week after having played on a Monday night, but they were playing their first game without linebacker Brian Cushing who went down with a season-ending knee ligament tear.

While J.J. Watt gets a bulk of the attention, adjusting without Cushing probably factored into why Aaron Rodgers threw for six touchdowns as the Packers' offense dominated.

"He's such a huge presence. I felt like he anchored that defense because he got everything rolling. He covered just as good as he rushed," Rice said. "I'm good friends with him. I wish him a speedy recovery.

"The other linebackers -- no knock on them -- they're filling in great. I don't think you can replace a guy like Cushing right away because what (coordinator) Wade Phillips has done with that defense is essentially based around (Cushing) doing what he has to do."

Center Matt Birk points out that there's no shame in losing to Green Bay.

"Certainly they were at the top of their game. That's what it takes to beat this team. They're no fluke," Birk said of the Texans. "They're a great team. Being down at their place just adds to the challenge, adds to the degree of difficulty."

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Ravens lower concession prices at M&T Bank Stadium ahead of 2018 season


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.