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Ravens vs Washington Football Team: Week 3 NFL preseason preview

The Washington Football Team and Baltimore Ravens will close out their preseason schedules in Saturday’s Week 3 matchup in the nation’s capital. Continue reading for our full preview of this game, including a predicted winner and key battles to watch for.

Click here to find out how high Washington and Baltimore are in our NFL power rankings

Baltimore Ravens vs Washington Football Team: What you need to know

John Harbaugh vs Ron Rivera

Ravens vs Washington Football Team: Week 3 NFL preseason preview
Oct 28, 2018; Charlotte, NC, USA; Carolina Panthers head coach Ron Rivera with Baltimore Ravens head coach John Harbaugh after the game at Bank of America Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports

It’s anyone’s guess who’ll be playing among the starters, but Saturday’s clash will feature two of the most experienced, best coaches in the NFL in Baltimore’s John Harbaugh and Washington’s Ron Rivera.

The Ravens have done little else but win under Harbaugh, who, to his credit, fully bought into the organization’s vision for MVP quarterback Lamar Jackson. Speaking of adaptability, Rivera promptly turned things around for the Football Team in 2020, guiding them to an NFC East title despite an unstable QB situation.

  • Historic Harbaugh: Preseason success can sometimes be fool’s gold, but it can also reflect how well-run a franchise is. Harbaugh has led the Ravens to 19 straight exhibition victories, tying Green Bay Packers legend Vince Lombardi for the longest winning streak of all-time.
  • Riverboat Ron: Known for his risk-taking ways, Rivera will probably play things close to the vest on Saturday. For the trivial purposes of a preseason contest, that’s for the best, but it may lead to Baltimore extending its winning streak.

Advantage: Baltimore Ravens

See where the Ravens and Washington rate among the league’s best in our NFL defense rankings

Odafe Oweh vs Samuel Cosmi

Baltimore Ravens vs Washington Football Team: What you need to know
Aug 14, 2021; Baltimore, Maryland, USA; Baltimore Ravens linebacker Odafe Oweh (99) leaps to sack New Orleans Saints quarterback Jameis Winston (2) during the first half at M&T Bank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports

Unfortunately, one of the Ravens’ first-round picks, wide receiver Rashod Bateman, is nursing a groin injury, but their other Day 1 selection, edge defender Odafe Oweh, should see extended action.

Oweh has struggled as a pass-rusher thus far in the preseason, and is bound to square off with Washington’s rookie second-round tackle Samuel Cosmi. The Texas product has experience on the left side from college, but the Football Team is working him at right tackle, where he could emerge as a starter soon.

  • Show Me The Oweh: Oweh’s freakish athletic profile sparked a classic tools vs. production debate as he entered the NFL Draft out of Penn State. The Ravens’ history of developing linebackers bodes well for him, but his sluggish start is a little discouraging.
  • Cosmi Crushing It: Pro Football Focus has Cosmi as the top-graded rookie offensive tackle through two weeks of the NFL preseason. If he continues that type of performance, he should stymie Oweh and any other Baltimore rusher who comes his way.

Advantage: Washington Football Team

Tylan Wallace vs Dyami Brown

Ravens vs Washington Football Team: Week 3 NFL preseason preview
Aug 20, 2021; Landover, Maryland, USA; Washington Football Team wide receiver Dyami Brown (2) catches a pass in front of Cincinnati Bengals cornerback Darius Phillips (23) in the first quarter at FedExField. Mandatory Credit: Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

Washington selected Dyami Brown in the third round of this year’s draft, while Wallace slid to Round 4. Seeing how they handle their reps on Saturday will be fascinating, as both could become eventual X-factors in their respective teams’ offenses.

Despite being relatively similar in stature at around 6-feet and 195 pounds, Brown and Wallace have different playing styles. Brown is more of an explosive, downfield threat, whereas Wallace is a physical, gritty possession receiver who’s aggressive at the catch point and flashed nicely with two catches for 36 yards versus Carolina last week.

  • Dynamic Dyami: Over his last two seasons at North Carolina, playing alongside Sam Howell, Brown averaged over 20 yards per catch on 106 receptions. If he can overcome the NFL learning curve quickly enough, there’s no denying Brown could be a favorite of Washington’s deep passing enthusiast field general Ryan Fitzpatrick.
  • Wily Wallace: Overcoming an ACL injury that cut his 2019 campaign short, Wallace rallied and put up 922 yards in 10 games for Oklahoma State last season. He should continue to get looks in a Ravens receiving corps that’s largely unproven outside of Sammy Watkins.

Advantage: Washington Football Team

The bottom line: For those who willingly bet on the NFL preseason, more power to you. Given the Ravens’ historic run, it’s hard to bet against them, even if Washington has the edge in some key individual areas.

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