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NFL Schedule Release: What we already know about 2017 Ravens slate

NFL Schedule Release: What we already know about 2017 Ravens slate

BY TYLER BYRUM, @theTylerByrum

With the NFL schedule being released on Thursday night, the Baltimore Ravens already know which teams they will be up against to make postseason after missing out in back-to-back years. 

First the team will play six games against their division, both a home and an away matchup against the Pittsburgh Steelers, the Cincinnati Bengals, and the Cleveland Browns. Throughout the past several seasons, the league has back-loaded the schedule with divisional matchups in order to keep most teams' playoff hopes alive. Typically three of those six games will be post-Thanksgiving, with one also within the season's first three weeks. As always (except last year), one of the Ravens-Steelers matchups will sure to be on primetime.

In this year's cycle, the Ravens will face off against the AFC South and the NFC North, which means three more playoff teams from last year, the Lions, Packers, and Texans. Tough road games will include at Green Bay and an 'away game' against the Jaguars played in London (typically scheduled in the middle weeks of the season).

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As the second place finishers in the AFC North, the squad will host the Dolphins and travel to Oakland for the 16 game schedule. Both those units took home the AFC Wild Card slots in 2017. 

The timing of the Green Bay and Oakland road games will be critical in the season. Field conditions inside Oakland Alameda Coliseum have never been the best when the Oakland Athletics games are still going on in September and potentially October. Meanwhile a trip to Lambeau in late November or December will surely be a dreaded matchup where temperatures hover around zero degrees.

Last year the team finished with a tough stretch against the Cowboys, Bengals, Dolphins, Patriots, Eagles, Steelers, and Bengals again. Make that three playoff teams and three divisional rivals in the final seven games. Odds would favor the Ravens getting a better balance this go around.

On Thanksgiving do not expect the Ravens to back in the limelight. With the team playing the Detroit Lions at home and the Redskins reportedly taking the primetime slot, there would be no room for Baltimore. In addition, they played against Pittsburgh on Christmas this past season. A shame for the team which is 2-0 on turkey day in their franchise's history.

There is also an indication for an uptick in primetime games for the Ravens with the team only having two last year, their lowest since 2006. Three total games were broadcast on national television. 

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Ravens rookie Trace McSorely is using the offseason to sharpen his coaching skills

Ravens rookie Trace McSorely is using the offseason to sharpen his coaching skills

Baltimore Ravens rookie Quarterback, Trace McSorley, acted as a guest coach with ProCamps Worldwide and the Quantico Defense Agency to host a mobile football camp for Department of Defense children, grades one through eight. 

The focus of the camp was to give back to the children of service members who may not see their parents for long stretches of time due to deployments and exercises.  

"It's a lot of fun being out here with these kids," McSorley said. "It's really cool to see all of these kids enjoying it and being out here for the love of the game."

The camp was held at Butler Stadium on the Marine Base in Quantico, Virginia.

McSorley, 23, visited multiple stations around the stadium to offer coaching and pointers to young athletes, while also assisting other volunteer coaches in running drills, and ensuring the kids were having fun while being safe.

WATCH: Trace McSorley 'I Am the Prospect:' Part 1

"When I was younger there were camps in my area that I went to and I got to meet guys like Ricky Ervins, D.J. Dozier, Shawn Springs," McSorley said.

"For me as a kid, seeing those guys giving back to the community really kind of gave me something to work towards. You're close to it so you start to see yourself at that level, and set goals for yourself."

Colonel William Bentley III, commanding officer of Marine Corps Base Quantico, believed the camp to be a success and hopes it returns to Quantico next year.

“We have a lot of great things going on for the kids.” Bentley III said. 

"Trace McSorley you've been outstanding and we appreciate you coming out and thanks for being here.”

Heading into camp McSorley has been focused on proving himself "every single day," and "absorbing as much information as he can." 

Although he won't be starting game one of the season, he's well aware of how important it is to watch those ahead of him before it's his time to shine. 

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Baltimore Ravens Roundup: Unsurprisingly, Ravens pass on Supplemental Draft

Baltimore Ravens Roundup: Unsurprisingly, Ravens pass on Supplemental Draft

Kick off your Thursday with the latest Baltimore Ravens news.

1. The Baltimore Ravens did not draft any players during Wednesday's NFL Supplemental Draft. This was not surprising as the Ravens have only picked up a Supplemental Draft player one time with Jared Gaither in 2007.

2.  Parking passes for Ravens training camp are now available for fans who plan on attending one or more of the 14 free/open practices at their Owings Mills facility.

Looking Ahead:

July 15: 4 p.m. ET deadline to get a long-term deal done with designated franchise tag players.

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: Baltimore Ravens for news points.

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