Trace McSorley Shines, Leads Ravens to 16th Straight Preseason Win

Big Bad Morning Show
August 23, 2019 - 9:37 am

© Bill Streicher - USA Today Sports

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By Joe Schiller

With no Lamar Jackson or Robert Griffin III, rookie sixth-round pick Trace McSorley earned the third preseason start against the Philadelphia Eagles on Thursday night. In just one half, he put together his best performance to date and strengthened his case to make the 53-man roster. 

McSorley finished 19-of-28 for 203 yards and three total touchdowns. The Ravens captured their 16th straight preseason win 26-15 after the game was ended in the third quarter due to inclement weather. 

McSorley has progressively improved over the offseason but reportedly struggled during joint practices this week. He led the offense on two scoring drives on their first three possessions, capped off by field goals from Justin Tucker, and earned his first rushing touchdown on a hard-fought four-yard run early in the second quarter to give the Ravens a 13-0 lead. 

Thursday night also marked the highly anticipated debut of first-round pick Marquise "Hollywood" Brown. The rookie wide receiver took the field in game action for the first time since recovering from a Lisfranc foot injury. Brown finished with just three catches for 17 yards and a two-point conversation that was nullified by a penalty, but the stats didn't matter. It marked an important milestone in Brown's recovery, and the next step to being on the field Week 1 against the Miami Dolphins. 

McSorley caught fire in the second quarter. He connected with Michael Floyd and Jaleel Scott on 28 and 7-yard passing touchdowns to extend the Ravens lead to 26-0 at halftime. 

McSorley showed poise in the pocket and flashed traits that made him one of the most successful quarterbacks in Penn State football history. The decision to keep three quarterbacks on the 53-man roster becomes much more difficult heading into the regular season. Even with Griffin healthy, McSorley has made a strong case to make the roster as a quarterback. 

The Eagles added second-half touchdowns from rookie wide receiver J.J. Arcega-Whiteside and Alex Ellis to cut the lead to 26-15, but a weather delay prompted head coaches, John Harbaugh, and Doug Pederson, to end the game to avoid any risk of injury. 

It was the right call after both teams participated in physical joint practices throughout the week. 

Week 3 was considered the "dress rehearsal" for the regular season, and the Ravens cap off the preseason with the finale against the Washington Redskins. Expect to see little-to-no starters on the field, as next week's game will focus on the roster bubble players and the formation of the 53-man roster.