Ravens-49ers: Pregame Notes

Todd Karpovich

The San Francisco 49ers at Baltimore Ravens is the marquee matchup in Week 13. 

Here are some notes leading up to the 1 pm ET kickoff:

  • The rain has been coming down steadily in Baltimore since sunrise but it's mostly subsided about 45 minutes before kick-off. Still, the field is soaked and rain is expected throughout the game. The Ravens have the league's top running attack (210.5 yards per game), followed by the 49ers (145.6). The weather could be a factor with holding onto the football and traction on the grass field at M&T Bank Stadium.
  • The Ravens reacted to the 49ers' run game by dressing just eight defensive backs. Baltimore has been most effective when it keeps six defensive backs on the field, but will likely be forced into a base defense, which is not its strength. Safety Chuck Clark could move into the dime linebacker role.  
  • Ravens undrafted rookie free agent Patrick Mekari is making his first start at center for the injured Matt Skura, who suffered a season-ending knee injury last week against the Rams. Mekari played just over three quarters against Los Angeles and the Ravens coaches were impressed with his performance. His rapport with Ravens quarterback Lamar Jackson and ability to snap the ball in the wet conditions could be a vital part of this game. 
  • This is a rematch of Super Bowl XLVII won by the Ravens 34-31. Baltimore has several players on the current roster that played in that game -- OL Marshal Yanda, P Sam Koch, K Justin Tucker, LS Morgan Cox, CB Jimmy Smith, DB Anthony Levine and LB Josh Bynes. For the 49ers, T Joe Staley and TE Garrett Sulek were part of that NFC championship roster. 
  • All of the Ravens inactive players are healthy scratches. San Francisco is dealing with several injuries: DE Dee Ford (hamstring), RB Matt Breida (ankle), WR Dante Pettis (knee) and Staley (finger).