Tonight, the Baltimore Ravens will face off against the New Orleans Saints, in the Mercedes-Benz Superdome. The Ravens now are returning to that stadium for the fourth straight year. Baltimore played against the Saints in a regular season showdown in 2014, beating them 34-27. Baltimore returned to New Orleans during the 2015 preseason, again defeating the Saints. This time, the Ravens scored 30 points, while holding the Saints to 27 points. Baltimore again flew down to the Superdome in the 2016 preseason. In the last game of that preseason, the Ravens defeated the Saints 22-13. Needless to say, the Baltimore Ravens have had a fair amount of success in the Superdome, even winning Super Bowl 47 in the stadium. Baltimore will be looking to continue their winning streak in New Orleans tonight, in the hopes of finishing the preseason with a 4-0 record. Here are some things to watch tonight, in tonight’s Ravens vs Saints game.
Last Chance for Roster Bubble Players
Tonight’s game, for many players, will be their last with the Baltimore Ravens. Cuts to the roster are made this Saturday, and the Ravens must trim their squad to just 53 players. Tough decisions must be made, and many players will walk out of Baltimore as free agents. This year, in particular, is going to be a difficult year for making cuts, as there are many players on the bubble of making the team. These players include RB Taquan Mizzell, WR Quincy Adeboyejo, WR Keenan Reynolds, DE/FB Patrick Richard, and CB Jaylen Hill. Of the five players listed above, Jaylen Hill has the best chance at making the final roster. He has been an outstanding defensive back throughout the entire preseason. His highlight of the preseason came when he intercepted Buffalo’s quarterback late in the game last week. Taquan Mizzell is also making a strong case for himself to be included on the final roster. The elusive, yet powerful back, has been leading Baltimore’s rushing attack this preseason. The Ravens also found a potential option at fullback, Patrick Richard. Although he came into the league as a defensive end, he has been consistently making an impact at fullback. Wide receivers Quincy Adeboyejo and Keenan Reynolds are long shot bubble players. Both have made an impact this offseason but may find themselves on the outside looking in next week.
Final Showdown Between Mallet and Woodrum
One of the more interesting stories from this preseason is the ongoing battle between quarterbacks Ryan Mallet and Josh Woodrum. Mallet, the presumptive backup to Joe Flacco, has been shaky throughout the preseason, causing some concern. Josh Woodrum, on the other hand, has been the complete opposite. Woodrum was expected to be just another camp arm for the Ravens. However, he quickly impressed during the preseason, putting up better statistics than Mallet. He also looked better as a quarterback overall. While Mallet was under throwing passes and missing receivers, Woodrum was both precise and accurate in his throws. Overall, Woodrum looked better than Mallet. The Ravens then decided to test Woodrum’s ability, putting him in with the starters for a few drives last week. When placed in that situation, Woodrum’s level of play dropped to about where Mallet’s was. This gives the indication that both may be on the same playing field. The Ravens will get one final look at the two passers tonight, where they will face off against relatively the same competition. This is also Mallet’s last opportunity to prove his worth as Baltimore’s backup quarterback. He needs to impress not just the Ravens organization, but the fans as well.