BALTIMORE (WJZ) — The city is greeting football’s return with open arms, hoping for a playoff season and an economic boost downtown.

Christie Ileto has more on the growing excitement.

When the Ravens are winning on the field, that means a big boost for the local economy.

To the tailgate, to the vendors, Thursday night meant Ravens Nation is back in business. It’s the preseason home opener against the 49ers.

“It’s the Superbowl all over again. The two brothers, here to have a good time and train from there,” said Ravens fan Jaye Pyle.

“Very excited. Its the start of a new season, start of new things,” said Ravens fan Nicole Henderson.

Hungry fans don’t want to see practice, just perfection.

“I just hope the Ravens will win and have a great season,” said young fan Jackson Lenzi.

Game day isn’t all about what happens on the field, but also what happens outside the stadium.

Ravens home games annually contribute over $126 million to the area, $100 million in personal income, $13 million in state and city taxes and it also supports over 3,000 jobs.

“And that’s just the stuff we can count. It’s really hard to count the stuff people are buying in supermarkets to buy tailgating supplies,” said Mike Evitts of Downtown Partnership.

An employee of Nick’s Seafood says game day means a lot of money pouring in.

“I don’t think of it as work when I’m here on game day. I think of it as joining into a fan club,” said one employee.

A fan club that’s watching, cheering and banking on a winning season.

The Ravens next game is on the road in Arlington, Texas as they take on the Dallas Cowboys August 16th.

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