USA TODAY Sports
The Ravens won't have the luxury of hosting the season kickoff game in Baltimore because of a scheduling conflict with the Orioles.
A neat little caveat was made to the NFL calendar a few years back and it allowed the previous year's Super Bowl Champion to host the first game of the season. That kickoff to the season usually comes with big fanfare, including live pregame musical performances, but also is held on a Thursday night instead of a Sunday. The Ravens won't get to host this year's kickoff because of a scheduling conflict with the Baltimore Orioles.
The two professional teams had been trying to forge some sort of agreement, likely where both teams would be able to host a game, but it appears that the Orioles wouldn't budge on the Ravens' demands. However, further tweets from the Ravens' official Twitter account had made it known that there weren't any hard feelings and the two teams have an amicable relationship.
Now that the Ravens are forced to go on the road to start the season, the Bengals could be a team that hosts the champions on Kickoff Thursday, especially since the team has had back-to-back quality seasons in which they've amassed 19 wins. Still, the Thursday game doesn't usually pit divisional foes against each other--they usually save that for the Monday Night Football double-header that the NFL and ESPN have also made a staple during opening weekend. If the Bengals were looked at to host this game, the Cincinnati Reds also have a game that evening, per the astute observation of Joe Reedy, and that could throw a wrench into those plans.
We'll see what shakes out here, but one thing is for sure: since winning the Lombardi Trophy in early February, things haven't been going very smoothly over at M & T Bank Stadium.