Ravens open 2013 season at home on Thursday Night Football

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As is customary for the defending Super Bowl champions, the Ravens will host the first regular season game of the 2013 NFL season.

Start planning your tailgates for Thursday, September 5 now, Baltimore.

While the opponent has not been announced, there are several “juicy” matchups on the Ravens’ schedule next season that the league would be champing at the bit to showcase.

Aaron Wilson of the Baltimore Sun names the most likely opponents for the opener as the New England Patriots, Pittsburgh Steelers, Houston Texans, or Green Bay Packers.

I’d throw in the Minnesota Vikings to that list. The Vikings made the playoffs this season, and running back Adrian Peterson was just named by the AP as the NFL’s Most Valuable Player and Offensive Player of the Year for 2012. The league will assuredly want to feature “All Day” in prime time as much as possible next year.

If I was a betting man, I’d put my money on New England as the opponent.

Though it would be great to rub our shiny new Lombardi Trophy in the faces of the rag-wavers, Pittsburgh just missed the playoffs, and Ravens-Steelers will undoubtedly be shown in a later prime time slot during the season anyway.

Houston, while extremely young and talented, doesn’t have the national appeal to most fans. Pass.

Green Bay would be interesting. With Joe Flacco’s name now being muttered alongside (or near) that of Aaron Rodgers in the quarterback discussion, a Packers/Ravens tilt would have the appropriate amount of “hype appeal.”

Still the networks love Brady and Belichick. A rematch of the most recent AFC Championship Game seems most likely.

There is another side to the story, however.

Domenic Vadala of Birds Watcher notes that the other hometown team – the Orioles – already have a game scheduled for that evening. Thus, some jockeying must be done between the NFL and MLB to avoid a cluster of monumental proportions at the Camden Yards complex that night.

For the good of Baltimore sports, neither team can allow this to turn into the Orioles vs. the Ravens, or even MLB vs. the NFL. Previous to 2012, I feel like the O’s and Ravens mildly tolerated each other. However the two sides definitely put themselves behind each other’s playoff runs, and I feel that bodes well for everyone involved. I don’t think that either franchise will allow that to happen for the record. The problem will come from the NFL (and please don’t get me wrong folks, I say that as an NFL fan). With the exception of last year’s game which was moved to Wednesday night because of President Obama’s convention speech, the NFL isn’t really keen on accomodating others. If it were suggested to the NFL that they consider moving their game to Wednesday as they did last year, I suspect they wouldn’t take kindly to that concept.

Quite frankly, I feel that the Ravens deserve that moment as it’s construed to be (on Thursday night). It would seem that the obvious solution would be for the O’s to reschedule that game for noon or something along those lines. Parking might get a bit dicey for some of the shared lots, however there’s no real perfect scenario. I suppose it’s possible that they could move the Ravens game since the O’s are already on the schedule, however again I wouldn’t bank on that. The other option would be for the Orioles to schedule it as a split-admission day/night doubleheader on Friday or Saturday, with the originally scheduled Thursday game being in the afternoon. However teams try to stay away from doubleheaders as best they can, and I can understand why.

As a lover of both the Ravens and the Orioles, I am very interested to see how this plays out. As Domenic correctly points out, the two have recently gone from tolerating each other to huge supporters, and it’s been amazing to see. From Ravens players wearing O’s gear to O’s players attending games at M&T Bank Stadium (or elsewhere – Adam Jones went to every Ravens playoff game, including the Super Bowl), the love that the two teams have been showing each other lately warms the heart of every Baltimore sports fan.

Hell, look at this picture from during the Ravens victory parade on Tuesday:

The two sides have seven months to get something figured out. Let’s hope they can do so quickly, and amicably.

This entry was posted in Blog View, Featured by Derek Arnold. Bookmark the permalink.

About Derek Arnold

Derek Arnold
RSR/ESR Senior Editor. Derek is originally from and a current resident of Pasadena, MD. He’s a graduate of UMBC and has been a lifelong Baltimore sports fan. In 2007 he founded B’More Birds’ Nest, where he wrote about the Ravens and Orioles before joining RSR in 2012. Derek’s work has...more

7 Raves on “Ravens open 2013 season at home on Thursday Night Football

  1. TheChuck on said:

    Like you I feel that it is going to be New England.

    I don’t see why people think that relations between the Ravens and O’s were frosty. To me it was just nothing more than fans exclusive to the teams verbally sparring with one another for different reasons.

    As for who should accomodate who, I say that the Ravens game should just be played the day before. I say whoever gets the date firts should get precedence. At times for example the Orioles had a game scheduled, but the Baltimore Blast indoor soccer team scheduled games anyway. That’s the Blast’s own fault.

  2. John Albright on said:

    The NFL’s illustrious leader would make a lot of fans happy if he was the one to make the first move to resolve this dilemma. The O’s game could be pushed earlier in the day and the Ravens game started an hour or two later then normal, that way both give a little and everybody’s happy. It would also give me time to go to both games that day.
    On a side note it would be pretty cool if it was the Pirates v O’s and Ravens v Steelers for that first game.

    • Anonymous on said:

      The Ravens game would already start at 8:30pm if they pushed it back and hour or 2 you want to start a game at 10 pm? the would end after 1am and would have people waiting for the light rail until 2-3am. I dont want to get home from a football game after bars are closed

  3. RavenRick on said:

    That’s assuming the NFL continues the trend of the Super Bowl winner opening the season on Thursday night. (Denver might decide to hang new bunting around the stadium this season and the NFL won’t want to miss televising that)

    When we won Super Bowl XXXV we were bumped from MNF because Denver opened their new stadium. (the first time since 1995 that the SB champ did not open on MNF) Then our Monday night game in week 2 (the first in franchise history) got bumped until the end of the season because of the events of 9/11. I think that was the last time the defending SB champion didn’t open on MNF or “Opening Night”.

    It wouldn’t surprise me if the NFL uses the scheduling problem with the O’s as an excuse to bump us again. With the roster changes that might be coming, the Ravens may not be on the national schedule as much as you would expect.

    However, you will be able to watch almost every Cowboys game played in 2013 despite the 8-8 record.

  4. Jeff on said:

    Raven Rick : enough of the sour grapes. That was over 10 yrs ago. The ravens are perennial winners the last 5 yrs. the nfl will not snub us this yr.

  5. Voice of Reason on said:

    I have a good solution that the Ravens could offer to make the Orioles happy. Have the Orioles move their game to Saturday at 1:05 PM. The Orioles still have two games with fans buying seperate tickets, and on an easy to manage weekend day for the fans. And in exchange, the Ravens stipulate that anybody who buys a ticket to the Thursday game (other than PSL holders) must also buy a ticket to a game in the White Sox series.

    Oh, and Jack White performs at the Raven’s halftime show and he plays Seven Nation Army. Well…that’s just for us fans.

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