Ravens set to host Carolina tonight

Aug. 22, 2013 @ 05:04 AM

The Baltimore Ravens will host the Carolina Panthers in the third week of the NFL preseason at 8 p.m. tonight. Former Southern Lee and Elon star Aaron Mellette will be trying to go three-for-three on national television as the game is being broadcast on ESPN.

Mellette, a seventh-round draft pick by Baltimore in April, has two receptions, both for touchdowns, in his first two games as a Raven wide receiver. Mellette caught a 40-yard touchdown pass from Tyrod Taylor in the fourth quarter of Baltimore’s 27-23 win versus Atlanta last Thursday in Baltimore.

Whether mainly thanks to catching touchdowns or the day-in, day-out work through training camp, Mellette practiced as part of the first-team offense during the past few days.

According to ESPN, Mellette and fellow receiver Marlon Brown ran plays with Joe Flacco and the first string during Sunday’s practice.

Baltimoreravens.com reported, in an article previewing Thursday’s game, Mellette and Brown earned “playing time with the starters during practice this week and the Ravens want to see if they can have success against first-team defenders.”

Baltimore head coach John Harbaugh said, “some of the young receivers have done an excellent job, and I think we owe it to our team, and owe it to them to see what they can do in there with the first group.”

Mellette could see more playing time versus Carolina as wide receiver Deonte Thompson will be out due to injury and Baltimore traded wide receiver David Reed to Indianapolis for running back Delone Carter on Wednesday.

Clubs must cut their rosters from 90 players to 75 by 4 p.m. Aug. 27. Baltimore has its last preseason game at St. Louis Aug. 29. Rosters must be cut to 53 players by 6 p.m. Aug. 31; active rosters on game days are 46 players. The Ravens begin their Super Bowl title defense on Thursday, Sept. 5 at Denver.