Washington Redskins 0-0 (0-0 ATS) at Baltimore Ravens 0-0 (0-0 ATS)
When and Where: Thursday, August 10, M&T Bank Stadium, Baltimore, Md. 7:30pm EDT
Spread: Baltimore -1; Total: 37.5
It is a battle of the nation’s capital! Well, kinda. It is, however, definitely a battle of local rivals, even if they play in different conferences. Neither team shook up the world a season ago. Despite the fact that each squad finished .500 or above, there were not enough playoff births to around for either team. They have only met six times in the regular season, with each side winning three times apiece. This, of course, is just a preseason contest, but that does not mean that there are still not some bragging rights involved for the local fans, particularly the ones that show up.
Redskins Rearing to Go
The Redskins pulled off an 8-7-1 regular season last season. After a couple of years where fans were left to wonder whether or not Robert Griffin III or Kirk Cousins were going to start under center, the answer was questioned when RGIII went to Cleveland to resurrect his career. Kirk Cousins is the unquestioned leader of this squad, but confidence in his abilities are not exactly at an all-time high. Cousins has thrown for 72 touchdowns in his career, but 46 interceptions as well. If the former Michigan State standout hopes to go down in history as anything other than a run-of-the-mill quarterback then he will have to step it up this season.
Former University of Florida tight end Jordan Reed, who has been Mr. Reliable for Cousins the last few seasons, is out for this game. Wide receiver Jamison Crowder, and cornerback Bashaud Breeland are both listed as questionable for the contest. In the offseason, the team signed Terrell Pryor Sr., and he has done nothing but impress in the preseason. The converted quarterback will look to be a big-time player this year for the ‘Skins at the WR position.
Ravens Riding High
When you talk about the Baltimore Ravens, you should not forget this is the same team that won the Super Bowl a few years ago with the same quarterback at the helm. Joe Flacco has certainly had his ups and downs, but a the end of the day, he is still a Super Bowl winning quarterback. The Ravens have been up and down since that Super Bowl victory, but one thing has always remained the same . . . the squad relies on defense.
A year ago the team finished at .500 with an 8-8 record, but it was not enough to make the AFC playoffs. Marty Morningweg has hinted that he will bring Flacco along slowly during the preseason, so we may no see much of him on Thursday, if anything at all. Former Arkansas quarterback Ryan Mallet will take the reigns at some point, whether it’s the opening snap, or a series later.
- 4-1 ATS in their last 5 home games
This game is in Baltimore . . . that’s about the best point I can make. You just never know in the opening week of preseason, but being at home certainly helps matters. Flacco and Cousins should sit early, and the rest of the ho-hum bums should play the rest of the game. Baltimore would probably like to beat D.C. in a preseason game more than any other team save the Steelers. Let’s ride that momentum here.
Editor’s Note: Do not expect to see Flacco on the field for this matchup
Pick: Ravens -1
Preseason games are tough to gauge as to how many points will be scored. Both of these teams have quarterbacks that are their definite starters. As a result, we are going to see a bunch of QBs that will not necessarily know what they are doing. Maybe that’s a bit harsh, but they are still quarterback’s not necessarily in control of the offense. Either way, it is not exactly a recipe for a shootout.