With the Ravens winning their preseason opener in a 20-19 final over Philadelphia on Saturday night, I’ve offered a dozen thoughts, each in 50 words or less:
1. The defense rebounded nicely in the second half, but Saturday won’t quell the uneasiness at cornerback with multiple young options banged up and missing valuable reps. When Kevon Seymour — a 29-year-old known more for his special-teams ability — is the only cornerback to improve his standing so far, that’s a concern.
2. Outperforming Josh Johnson so far this summer, Tyler Huntley continued that in the preseason opener despite the 37-year-old getting the start. Recovered from last year’s shoulder problems, Huntley is throwing with more zip and confidence. Meanwhile, Anthony Brown showed why he isn’t in the mix for the No. 2 job.
3. Though Zay Flowers didn’t catch a pass in his NFL preseason debut, he drew a pair of penalty flags on defenders struggling to stick with him in coverage. He hasn’t made a ton of plays in full-team periods of practice yet, but the athleticism and potential are undeniable.
4. David Ojabo had one tackle in 20 snaps, but he got caught crashing inside on a couple occasions, one of those leading to Marcus Mariota’s 14-yard scramble on a third-and-13 on the opening drive. He’s still learning, but there’s much to like.
5. If there were any concerns about the transition from the injured Nick Moore to Tyler Ott at long snapper, Justin Tucker connecting on a 60-yard field goal and Jordan Stout averaging 50 yards per punt were great signs. It’s incredible how easy Tucker made that long field goal look.
6. Much focus has been on sixth-round rookie Malaesala Aumavae-Laulu — who had an up-and-down night — in the left guard competition, but I thought 2022 fourth-round pick Daniel Faalele played well at both tackle spots. Pro Football Focus agreed, giving him the highest grade of any offensive lineman for the game.
7. With several defensive linemen scheduled to become free agents next offseason, the Ravens need Travis Jones to emerge as someone to help anchor that group for the next few years. He made a pair of impressive run stops and pressured the pocket a couple times in the first half.
8. Judging him too harshly against freakish first-round defensive tackle Jalen Carter probably isn’t fair, but Ben Cleveland showed why he hasn’t been a factor in the battle for the starting left guard job. The 2021 third-round pick is competing just to make the team at this point.
9. While Tylan Wallace helped his standing with a highlight touchdown on a beautiful back-shoulder throw by Huntley, James Proche hurt his with a fumble on a punt return. Competing for the potential No. 6 receiver job, Wallace is the superior special-teams player and has an additional year of team control.
10. John Harbaugh rested starters and some key reserves, so I was surprised to see Gus Edwards play and receive five touches — for 28 yards — over 14 snaps. He saw action in the two-minute drive to close the first half, but that wouldn’t figure to be a likely role for him.
11. Former City standout and undrafted rookie Malik Hamm showed off the same spin move he’s flashed in practices to sack Eagles quarterback Tanner McKee in the third quarter. He’s likely competing for a spot on the practice squad, but what a special moment for Hamm playing in his hometown.
12. Lamar Jackson was two days shy of making his debut — for the University of Louisville — when the Ravens last lost a preseason game on Sept. 3, 2015. The Streak continues at 24 consecutive wins and remains one of the weirdest feats in sports.