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Christmas Night game, London trip headline 2023 Ravens schedule

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The third Christmas Day game and second trip to London in franchise history headline the 2023 schedule for the Ravens, who will be aiming to make the playoffs for the fifth time in the last six years.

Baltimore will open its 28th campaign at home against Houston on Sept. 10 and play four of its first six games on the road to begin the 2023 campaign.

In addition to a trip to San Francisco for Monday Night Football on Christmas, the Ravens are currently scheduled to play three other prime-time games, which will include a Week 11 Thursday night tilt with AFC North rival Cincinnati at M&T Bank Stadium as well as Sunday night games at the Los Angeles Chargers and Jacksonville. Baltimore will be playing on Christmas Day for the first time since a heartbreaking loss at Pittsburgh in 2016.

The NFL announced Wednesday that Baltimore would travel to London to take on the Tennessee Titans at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium in Week 6, which will mark a third straight road game for John Harbaugh’s team to start October. The Ravens’ only other trip to the United Kingdom resulted in a disastrous 44-7 loss to Jacksonville at Wembley Stadium in 2017.

The Ravens’ first three AFC North games come on the road over the first month of the season, but they conclude the regular season with a home tilt against longtime adversary Pittsburgh.

Baltimore will play seven games against playoff teams from last season — Cincinnati (two), Jacksonville, the Los Angeles Chargers, Miami, San Francisco, and Seattle — with five of its final seven contests coming against 2022 postseason teams. Meanwhile, the Ravens have seven games against opponents who suffered 10 or more losses a year ago: Cleveland (twice), Houston, Indianapolis, Tennessee, Arizona, and the Los Angeles Rams. For what it’s worth, Baltimore will play the NFL’s 12th-easiest schedule based on opponents’ 2022 winning percentage.

After a very light travel schedule in 2022, the Ravens will have the NFL’s sixth-longest travel distance during the 2023 regular season at 25,442 miles with only Miami (27,110 miles) traveling more among non-West Coast teams. As of now, 10 of the Ravens’ 17 regular-season games are scheduled for 1 p.m. Sunday starts, but many of those are subject to flexible scheduling, which can begin as early as Week 5.

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2023 SCHEDULE

Sunday, Sept. 10 vs. Houston Texans — 1:00 p.m. (CBS) 
Skinny: Hosting a team with a rookie head coach and a rookie quarterback potentially making his first NFL start is as appealing as it gets to start a season on a winning note, which will be important with four of the following five games on the road.

Sunday, Sept. 17 at Cincinnati Bengals — 1:00 p.m. (CBS) 
Skinny: If the Ravens want to unseat the two-time defending division champions, knocking off the Bengals on the road would go a long way even in a mid-September matchup, which is weird with these teams used to playing in Cincinnati late in the season.

Sunday, Sept. 24 vs. Indianapolis Colts — 1:00 p.m. (CBS) 
Skinny: Baltimore has won the last three meetings with the team that used to play in Baltimore, but the buzz that once existed for this matchup is long gone, especially with the Colts being largely irrelevant since Andrew Luck’s retirement.

Sunday, Oct. 1 at Cleveland Browns — 1:00 p.m. (CBS)
Skinny: There’s intrigue to see what Deshaun Watson looks like as a quarterback with his suspension and long layoff from playing behind him, but the Browns’ last two wins over the Ravens each came with Lamar Jackson sidelined due to injury.

Sunday, Oct. 8 at Pittsburgh Steelers — 1:00 p.m. (CBS)
Skinny: Speaking of Jackson, the superstar quarterback has missed four of the last five meetings with the rival Steelers, which is doing this legacy rivalry no favors despite the dramatic Week 17 clash in Baltimore last January.

Sunday, Oct. 15 at Tennessee Titans (London) — 9:30 a.m. (NFL Network)
Skinny: A third straight road game that also includes a flight across the Atlantic Ocean is nothing to take lightly even if the Titans looked like a team on a major decline down the stretch last year.

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Sunday, Oct. 22 vs. Detroit Lions — 1:00 p.m. (FOX)
Skinny: Instead of having a bye to rest up after their trip to the United Kingdom, the Ravens will host an upstart team that will be a popular playoff pick for 2023, making this the sneaky tough game of the season.

Sunday, Oct. 29 at Arizona Cardinals — 4:25 p.m. (CBS) 
Skinny: A long cross-country trip is always challenging and Kyler Murray could even be back by this point, but the Cardinals are shaping up on paper to be one of the worst teams in the NFL.

Sunday, Nov. 5 vs. Seattle Seahawks — 1:00 p.m. (CBS)
Skinny: Geno Smith and the Seahawks won’t be able to sneak up on teams after their surprising 2022 season, and the early kickoff always helps against a West Coast team coming to Baltimore.

Sunday, Nov. 12 vs. Cleveland Browns — 1:00 p.m. (CBS)
Skinny: Considering Baker Mayfield and Freddie Kitchens are long gone from Cleveland, you wouldn’t expect the motivation factor to be too extreme for Odell Beckham Jr. and Todd Monken in facing their old team.

Thursday, Nov. 16 vs. Cincinnati Bengals — 8:15 p.m. (Amazon Prime Video)
Skinny: You always prefer playing a Thursday game at home, but two division games in five days is tough, especially figuring how high the stakes have been against the Bengals the last couple years.

Sunday, Nov. 26 at Los Angeles Chargers — 8:20 p.m. (NBC) 
Skinny: Baltimore will be making its first trip to the extravagant SoFi Stadium, but the Chargers are coming off their first playoff appearance and have no shortage of talent, making this one of the toughest road games on the schedule.

Sunday, Dec. 3 BYE
Skinny: Week 13 is the latest bye the Ravens have had since 2001, which could be advantageous to a playoff push or highly problematic if early-season injuries begin to pile up.

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Sunday, Dec. 10 vs. Los Angeles Rams — 1:00 p.m. (CBS)
Skinny: The Rams are only a year removed from winning the Super Bowl, but they’re looking like one of the worst teams in football entering 2023, likely making this a must-win game with the final four games of the season coming against teams with winning records last year.

Sunday, Dec. 17 at Jacksonville Jaguars — 8:20 p.m. (NBC)
Skinny: Expectations are high for Trevor Lawrence and the Jaguars and the Ravens suffered a last-second loss in Jacksonville last November, making this another difficult prime-time road game.

Monday, Dec. 25 at San Francisco 49ers — 8:15 p.m. (ABC)
Skinny: Even with persistent questions at the quarterback position, the 49ers remain one of the NFL’s top teams and will be difficult to beat concluding back-to-back prime-time road games.

Sunday, Dec. 31 vs. Miami Dolphins — 1:00 p.m. (CBS)
Skinny: These teams combined for 80 points in a Week 2 shootout last season, so it will be interesting to see what impact the New Year’s Eve weather and Monken’s new offense will have in a meeting between playoff contenders.

Saturday or Sunday, Jan. 6 or 7 vs. Pittsburgh Steelers — TBD
Skinny: If Kenny Pickett takes a big step in his first full season as Pittsburgh’s starting quarterback, this game could have some serious playoff ramifications and be a candidate for a Saturday or Sunday night time slot.

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