Kickoff: 8 p.m., Tom Benson Hall of Fame Stadium (Canton, Ohio)
TV: NBC (Al Michaels, Chris Collinsworth, Michele Tafoya) / WBAL Ch. 11 (Baltimore)
Radio: WBAL (1019 AM) & 98 Rock (97.9 FM)
The Ravens have talked about building momentum throughout a strong offseason. They want to keep that rolling with a win in their opening preseason game. Baltimore's players are tired of hitting each other and ready to show what they can do against another team.
The Ravens have never played in the Hall of Fame game. It's their second preseason meeting with the Chicago Bears, with the Ravens winning the last one, 19-14, in Chicago in 1998.
Lamar Jackson's Debut
The most exciting part of Thursday night's game will be seeing first-round quarterback Lamar Jackson in game action. Jackson was a dynamic playmaker in college, but will the Heisman Trophy winner be able to pull off the same moves in the NFL? It's also a chance to see how far Jackson has developed in terms of handling the offense/huddle/play calls and as a pocket passer.
Robert Griffin III's Comeback
The other big Ravens story is also at quarterback, as it will be the first time veteran quarterback Robert Griffin III has played an NFL game in 19 months. The 2012 No. 2-overall pick was once in Jackson's shoes as the hyped-up rookie, but after a bitter end in Washington, one-year stay in Cleveland and one year out of the NFL altogether, this is his first chance to show that he can return to prominence.
Defense Is Playing for Ray
Ray Lewis will be the star of the show watching his team from the sidelines. Under new Defensive Coordinator Wink Martindale, who was Lewis' linebackers coach in 2012, the Ravens have a prideful defense that wants to play with Lewis' tenacity and effort in front of their former leader.
Players to Watch (other than the QBs)
WR Tim White
Just like last year, White has made a splash in training camp and rolls into the preseason with a lot of momentum. He'll look to finish this first game healthier than last year, however. White suffered a season-ending hand injury in his preseason debut last season (he still caught a touchdown pass later in the game). White needs to play well at both returner and receiver to ensure his spot on the final roster.
RT Orlando Brown Jr.
The Ravens' starting right tackle spot is perhaps the biggest domino of all the Ravens' competition battles. Brown will likely get plenty of reps to prove himself. Baltimore wants the rookie third-round pick to show that he can handle both speed and power on the edge. Brown's college tape was stellar. Let's see if he turns it on in a game setting.
LB Kenny Young
The rookie fourth-round pick is competing with third-year veteran Patrick Onwuasor for the inside linebacker job next to C.J. Mosley. Onwuasor has the lead, but Young has been impressive in practice with the way he flies around the field. If he can show out in preseason action, he has a real chance at being a Week 1 starter.