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Was Jimmy Smith's stellar performance a preview of 2016?


Was Jimmy Smith's stellar performance a preview of 2016?

Did Ravens cornerback Jimmy Smith give people a glimpse Sunday of what to expect from him next season?

Smith had his best game of the year, rising to the challenging of defending perhaps the NFL’s best receiver corps. In one-on-one situations against both Antonio Brown and Martavis Bryant, Smith did a superb job of playing aggressively, breaking up passes, and making open field tackles whenever he did allow a completion. Smith also had one interception, dropped another possible interception, and had a 101-yard pick-six nullified by a penalty.

Smith has never used last year’s foot surgery as an excuse, but he did not start the season 100 percent, and Ravens coach John Harbaugh alluded to that after the game.

“Here’s a guy that has been battling foot (issues) and a myriad of things that go with that, all season long,” Harbaugh said. “To go out there and practice the way he practices, it shows up in the two-interception performance, one for a touchdown (called back) game that he had today.”

Prior to his Lisfranc surgery, Smith was being mentioned among the NFL’s top cornerbacks. The Ravens hope Smith returns to that level in 2016 after an offseason of rest. His play has gotten stronger as the season has progressed, and when Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger threw at Smith, he usually answered.

“To get a turnover period is a great thing,” Smith said. “To get a turnover in a rivalry game when things are not going the way we want to is even better.”

The Ravens (5-10) aren’t going to the playoffs, but after Sunday’s loss, the Steelers (9-6) may not be going either. Smith hopes to close the season on an upbeat note next weekend in Cincinnati, facing another premier receiver in A. J. Green of the Bengals, who had 227 yards and two touchdowns against the Ravens in Week 3.

“Since we can’t go to the playoffs, the only next thing that’s going to be great is us beating Cincinnati,” said Smith. “That’s the next goal.”


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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.