Everything You Need to Know: Ravens vs. Panthers

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FB/DL Patrick Ricard

Basics

Kickoff: 7 p.m., Bank of America Stadium

TV: WBAL Channel 11 (Baltimore), WJLA Channel 7 (DC), WGAL Channel 8 (York/Harrisburg/Lancaster), WWCW Channel 21 (Roanoke), WUPV Channel 12 (Richmond), WTVZ Channel 33 (Norfolk), WMDT Channel 47 (Delmarva), WWCP Channel 8 (State College/Johnstown/Altoona, Pa.), Ravens crew Gerry Sandusky (play-by-play), Mike Nolan (analyst), Rod Woodson (analyst), Evan Washburn (sideline)

Radio: WBAL (1090 AM) and 98 Rock (97.8 FM), simulcast with TV; WDCN La Nueva 87.7 Spanish radio broadcast on the Ravens app: Gustavo Salazar (play-by-play), Ximena Lugo-Latorre (color commentator)

Stakes

The Ravens have an 18-game preseason winning streak dating back to 2015. Meanwhile, there are still plenty of roster decisions to be made with just two games left on the preseason schedule. Depending on how Baltimore treats the final preseason game next week, this could be the final tune-up for many of the starters.

History

The Ravens lead the Panthers, 5-2, in their all-time preseason matchups. Their last preseason encounter was in 2016, when the Ravens won, 22-19, at M&T Bank Stadium.

Storylines

Will Lamar Jackson see action?

Head Coach John Harbaugh has not revealed his plans regarding playing time. However, Jackson didn't play in the preseason opener and he may not play this week, with so many top wide receivers dealing with injuries and the offensive line still not 100 percent. With Trace McSorley (back) sidelined, second-year quarterback Tyler Huntley could see plenty of reps, as could former Calvert Hall quarterback Kenji Bahar.

Will this game bring more clarity to the left guard position?

The starting job for the regular season still looks wide open. Rookie Ben Cleveland (concussion) missed the preseason opener, and while he was in uniform for practice on Wednesday, he didn't participate in team drills and was sidelined again on Thursday. Ben Powers and Tyre Phillips are also candidates to play left guard, but the Ravens have done plenty of juggling at the position during training camp. Whoever starts Saturday night will have a chance to make a statement.

Which young players fighting for a roster spot will step up?

Running backs Ty'Son Williams and Nate McCrary, who combined for 72 yards rushing in the preseason opener, could see plenty of work. Safety Geno Stone had two interceptions last weekend and is battling for a roster spot, as is undrafted safety Ar'Darius Washington and cornerback Chris Westry. This game could play a key role in determining all of their fates.

Key Matchups

Ravens defense vs. Panthers quarterback Sam Darnold

Panthers Head Coach Matt Rhule said Thursday that he was leaning toward playing Darnold for a series or two, after sitting him in the preseason opener. As the new starting quarterback in Carolina, Darnold will want to look good and establish a rhythm. It should be a good test for Baltimore's defenders who are in the game while Darnold is playing.

Ravens offensive line vs.Panthersdefensive tackle Daviyon Nixon

Nixon was a problem for the Ravens during Thursday's joint practice, intercepting two passes off deflections and penetrating into the backfield consistently. Nixon was the Big Ten Defensive Player of the Year at Iowa, but he lasted until the fifth round and looks like he entered the NFL with a chip on his shoulder. The Ravens offensive line wants to do a better job against Nixon during this game.

Ravens pass rushers vs. Panthers offensive line

Carolina is also sorting out questions along its offensive line. The Ravens have some young pass rushers who will be looking to make noise, including Odafe Oweh, Daelin Hayes and Jaylon Ferguson. Seeing them create consistent pressure on the quarterback would be a positive takeaway from this game.

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