BALTIMORE — It’s early in the season and no more than 250 fans will watch from the stadium, but anticipation for the Baltimore Ravens’ game against the Kansas City Chiefs has continued to balloon. Even some of Baltimore’s coaches and players conceded that this week wasn’t a typical one, with the defending champs due in town for a matchup of expected title contenders.
Here are all the key details for Monday night:
What: The Chiefs (2-0) play at the Ravens (2-0) in Week 3 of the 2020 NFL season
Where: M&T Bank Stadium, Baltimore, Maryland
When: Kickoff is scheduled for 8:15 p.m. on Sept. 28, 2020
TV Channel: ESPN
TV announcers: Steve Levy (play by play), Brian Griese (analysis), Louis Riddick (analysis) and Lisa Salters (sideline)
Online streaming: NFL-TV (Try for free)
Baltimore Radio: WBAL (1090 AM) & 98Rock (97.9 FM)
Radio announcers: Gerry Sandusky (play-by-play) and Dennis Pitta (analysis)
Injury report: The Ravens ruled one player as out and four as questionable, while the Chiefs listed one as out and three as questionable. More here.
Forecast: 74 degrees, partly cloudy, 15 percent chance of precipitation, 8 MPH winds
Betting line: Baltimore is favored by 3.5 points
Over/under: 54.5 points (via Oddsshark)
1) The ultimate measuring stick
Winners of 14 straight regular season games, the Ravens have reason to believe they’re positioned as Super Bowl favorites two weeks into the 2020 season. But Kansas City holds the crown Baltimore wants, and the Chiefs have beaten coach John Harbaugh’s team each of the past two seasons.
“We know they’re the defending Super Bowl champions,” Ravens offensive tackle Ronnie Stanley said this week. “To play at that top level, to get to the best of the best, you have to beat the best. And right now, that’s them coming off of the year they came off of.”
Ravens quarterback Lamar Jackson is the reigning MVP, and Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes took home that award in 2018, which helps paint the picture of a budding rivalry between two young stars with entertaining styles of play. Fans and media members have envisioned Jackson and Mahomes ruling over the NFL for years and regularly square off in meaningful matchups.
Monday, Jackson’s simply looking for his first head-to-head triumph over his counterpart in Kansas City.
3) Gunning for No. 1?
For the time, seven teams in each conference will make the NFL playoffs this year, and only the No. 1 seeds will get first-round byes. The Ravens and Chiefs were the top two seeds in the AFC last season and are undefeated in 2020. So it’s fair to wonder whether this contest will wind up carrying more postseason implications than just about any other regular-season game across the NFL though the playoffs won’t start for more than three months.