Baltimore Ravens: Five Players to Watch in Friday's Game Against Detroit
Playing Detroit will give the Ravens an opportunity to see how they size up against a talented team. With the starters playing slightly more than last week, Friday's game gives the team a chance to see what adjustments need to be made as the regular season looms.
Here are five key Ravens players to keep an eye on in Friday night's prime time showdown against Detroit.
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After missing last Thursday's preseason opener, middle linebacker Ray Lewis will make his 2012 debut Friday night.
He's a player to keep an eye on because of his new-look frame. Lewis lost at least 20 pounds in the offseason, and his playing weight is currently under 240 pounds.
It will be interesting to see if the weight loss has an affect on Lewis' speed, particularly in pass defense.
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The worst performance in the preseason opener for the Ravens was without a doubt Cary Williams.
The team's No. 3 corner did not live up to the task of defending Atlanta Falcons receiver Julio Jones. The speedy Jones blew by Williams on several occasions, and Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan threw right at Williams.
Friday's game gives Williams a chance to put last Thursday's poor performance in the past and shift his focus toward Detroit's receivers.
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With rookie kicker Justin Tucker starting to pull away in Baltimore's kicking battle, Friday's game gives Billy Cundiff an opportunity to show why he should be the kicker for the Ravens this season.
Cundiff will get the team's first field goal attempt, which could help his chances as he didn't attempt a field goal in the preseason opener.
However, Cundiff is currently walking on thin ice and one missed field goal by him could ultimately decide the winner of the Ravens' kicking competition.
Despite missing the team's preseason opener with a hamstring injury, rookie running back Bernard Pierce is still the favorite to win the backup running back job. While fellow rookie Bobby Rainey was one of the top performers against the Falcons, it is still Pierce's job to lose.
Second-year running backs Anthony Allen and Damien Berry failed to make an impact against Atlanta, which gives Pierce a chance to assert himself as the top running back behind Ray Rice.
Look for Pierce to show why he deserves the backup running back position on Friday night.
One Ravens rookie who is currently on the outside looking in to make the final 53-man roster for Baltimore is wide receiver Tommy Streeter.
While he is 6'5" and has plenty of potential, Streeter has disappointed so far in training camp. He has been consistently outplayed by fellow rookie receiver Deonte Thompson, and only managed to catch two passes for 12 yards against the Falcons.
If Streeter fails to make a noticeable impact yet again on Friday night, his chances of making the final roster will greatly decrease.