The Baltimore Ravens are chasing a fourth-straight victory and will square off against the Carolina Panthers in a Week 11 matchup they’re tipped to win.
Baker Mayfield is set to start in place of P.J Walker, as the latter is unable to suit up due to an ankle issue.
“Quarterback Baker Mayfield will return to the starting lineup for the Carolina Panthers on Sunday after an MRI taken over the weekend revealed that PJ Walker suffered a high ankle sprain in Thursday night’s victory over the Atlanta Falcons,” ESPN reports.
“Sam Darnold, who lost the open competition to Mayfield for the starting job during training camp, will be the backup for the Week 11 game against the Baltimore Ravens.”
The Ravens have enjoyed playing against Mayfield as he’s thrown some real stinkers against them, so they will be relieved to have him as the Panthers’ starting signal caller instead of Walker, which is indicative of how far the former Cleveland Browns QB has fallen. Walker can be a worry for defenses as he has the ability to scramble and make a nuisance of himself – Baker presents no such threat.
Walker seemed to suggest the Panthers’ Bank of America Stadium pitch was to blame for his injury. He’s the third Carolina QB to suffer a high ankle sprain on said pitch, which went from grass to turf in 2021.
“It’s tough on the bodies, especially for those big guys, receivers as well, coming out of breaks,” he said this week. “It’s tough. Do I think the league should go to more grass fields? Absolutely. It helps the body more. It’s just more healthy on the body, the joints, the bones and all those things, especially if you play for a long time in this league.”
As noted above, Baltimore is favored to win their next game, so a bet in Maryland with BetMGM is likely to leave punters on the favorable end of things should they put their money on the in-form side.
The Ravens won their third successive game and fourth out of their last five against the New Orleans Saints last Monday. They remain atop the AFC North with a 6-3 record.
Their defense did the heavy lifting in this one, limiting the Saints to 13 points as they logged four sacks. The defensive performance was probably the best from the Ravens all season. They held New Orleans to 243 yards, their fewest for the campaign.
Outside linebacker Justin Houston accounted for 2.5 out of the four sacks and was instrumental in the fourth quarter as he snagged an interception. He’s now the first player in team history to have three consecutive outings with multiple sacks. Houston was the main man for the Ravens’ defense, which didn’t concede a touchdown until there were just four minutes left in the game.
The display came at just the right time given how depleted the Ravens’ offense is at the moment. QB Lamar Jackson was without Pro Bowl TE Mark Andrews, who is inactive with shoulder and knee injuries, as well as No.1 wide receiver Rashod Bateman, who is done for the season due to a foot injury, and running backs J.K. Dobbins and Gus Edwards (knee and hamstring injuries, respectively).
Baltimore still managed to win another game ahead of their bye week. They’ve continued to be one of the fastest-starting teams in the NFL and became the first outfit to lead by double digits at any point during their first nine games of the season. According to ESPN Stats & Information, no team has done so since the Green Bay Packers in 2011, while the Ravens are only the third team to achieve such a feat in the past 20 years. The Saints happen to be the only other team to have done so.
By that point, though, both the Packers and Saints were 9-0, something which points out just how good Baltimore could have been had it not been for capitulations in three of their fourth quarters.
Meanwhile, Ravens head coach John Harbaugh has revealed that he has plans to give game time to rookies David Ojabo and Charlie Kolar when the coaching staff feels like they’re ready. This is a pretty interesting prospect and it will be interesting to see how the first-year linebacker and tight end get on.
Neither player had the luxury of a training camp ahead of the season, which has hindered their progress. The Ravens are also getting major production from edge and tight end this season, making it even more difficult. But it would be safe to assume that Ojabo will be the one to see some action, at least the lion’s share between the two. It seemed as if the player might make his debut against the Panthers this week but Harbaugh’s comment appears to have dispelled that notion.