The 2019 schedule is out and here’s the rundown of what UK Ravens fans need to know. How many late nights are there? And what games could I travel to?
The Ravens’s 2019 schedule has been released and you’ll find plenty of breakdowns at the usual outlets. Among the highlights, Baltimore has an unusual schedule that alternates home and road games for the entire season. It’s just the fourth time that’s happened since the NFL went to a 16 game season in 1978, according to ESPN.
There is no primetime game against the Steelers, which will end a 12-year streak, assuming the week 17 game isn’t flexed into primetime. The Ravens host a Sunday night game for the first time since 2012 – this time against the Patriots. However, the team continues to be snubbed for hosting Monday night games. Their Monday night game against the Rams in LA will be the 14th Monday nighter under John Harbaugh but just two of those have come at home.
However, when a UK fan looks at the NFL schedule, there are usually three considerations. First, how many late nights am I in for? Second, for those who go to the London games, which of these clash? And third, can I plan myself a trip? Let’s answer some of those:
W1, Sun Sept 8: at Miami, 6pm
W2, Sun Sept 15: ARIZONA, 6pm
W3, Sun Sept 22: at Kansas City, 6pm
W4, Sun Sept 29: CLEVELAND, 6pm
W5, Sun Oct 6: at Pittsburgh, 6pm*
W6, Sun Oct 13: CINCINNATI, 6pm**
W7, Sun Oct 20: at Seattle, 9.25pm
W8, Sun Oct 27: BYE***
W9, Mon Nov 4: NEW ENGLAND 1.20am****
W10, Sun Nov 10: at Cincinnati 6pm
W11, Sun Nov 17: HOUSTON 6pm
W12, Tue Nov 26: at LA Rams 1.15am
W13, Sun Dec 1: SAN FRANCISCO 6pm
W14, Sun Dec 8: at Buffalo 6pm
W15, Fri Dec 13: NY JETS 1.20am
W16, Sun Dec 22: at Cleveland 6pm
W17, Sun Dec 29: PITTSBURGH 6pm
London games, 2019
* Bears at Raiders, Sun Oct 6, 6pm
** Panthers at Buccaneers, Sun Oct 13, 2.30pm
*** Bengals at Rams, Sun Oct 27, 5pm
**** Texans at Jaguars, Sun Nov 3, 2.30pm
Now you know the UK kickoff times and which games clash with London games, what about getting to the US to watch some? Lots of fans look for ways they can spend a long week in the US and catch a couple of Ravens games. With the absence of back-to-back home games this year, that’s harder, but not impossible. Here are a few options:
Wk 4 vs Cleveland
Wk 5 at Pittsburgh
Wk 6 vs Cincinnati
Pittsburgh is 200 miles from Baltimore, so you could take in AFC North match-ups at home and on the road by doing two of these three. Or you can go crazy and go to all three.
Wk 9 vs New England
Wk 10 at Cincinnati
Wk 11 vs Houston
Cincinnati is about twice as far from Baltimore as Pittsburgh, so you’re looking at an eight-hour drive if you want to go by road or a 90-minute flight. The Sunday night game against the Patriots, followed by a slow trip to Cincinnati would be a good pairing. Or you could start in Cincinnati and head to Baltimore for the Texans game.
Wk 13 vs San Francisco
Wk 14 at Buffalo
Wk 15 (Thur) vs NY Jets
Believe it or not, Buffalo is closer to Baltimore than Cleveland or New England. It’s still a six-hour drive, but only an hour by air, and you could pair it with a home game versus the 49ers or the Jets. The Jets game is particularly appealing because it’s a Thursday-nighter. It’s the only time this season that you could see two Ravens games in under a week.
Wk 16 at Cleveland
Wk 17 vs Pittsburgh
If you fancy Christmas in the US, then these two games are a nice possibility. Cleveland is a six-hour drive from Baltimore, though you could detour to the Hall of Fame on your way. Or it’s an hour by air. You could finish your season with a rivalry game against the Steelers. This could be a great pair because the last two games of the season could be vitally important. They usually are.
Bonus, Week 15: The closest team to Baltimore is Washington and there’s one week this year where you could see both play at home on the same weekend. The Ravens host the Jets on the Thursday night, while the Eagles travel to Washington on the Sunday. This is an easy way to see two NFL games in a long weekend.