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Arrington ready for 'chess match' with Manning


Arrington ready for 'chess match' with Manning

Ravens cornerback Kyle Arrington will be playing in his 100th NFL game on Sunday (including the playoffs), and he has faced Peyton Manning six times, so he already knows full well what to expect when the Ravens face the certain Hall of Famer to open the season.

"He’s as good as they come – so cerebral, studies the game and plays it the way it should be," Arrington said on Wednesday. "It’s definitely going to be a tough challenge for us.”

"It’s a chess match out there," he later added. "You give (Manning) one look, he’s going to check to a different play. Shoot ... It might be a double check. He might run the same play that he has called, and then our quarterback on our defense with Daryl (Smith) is out there doing the same thing. It’s going to be a good matchup.”

Arrington is considered one of the key defensive upgrades for the Ravens after the secondary struggled greatly last year because of injuries and ineffectiveness. The Ravens also signed safety Kendrick Lewis, who essentially replaced Darian Stewart. If Lardarius Webb and Jimmy Smith are both healthy -- which would be another major upgrade over last year -- they project to be the two starting cornerbacks, with Arrington serving in a nickel role.

MORE RAVENS Thursday thoughts: Receivers need to silence doubts

Arrington, who was with the Patriots for the past six seasons, has nine career interceptions, including a league-best seven in 2011. The Ravens had just 11 interceptions last year, tied for the fewest in team history, and no defensive back had more than one. The Ravens stressed throughout training camp the importance of interceptions from the secondary, but in the four preseason games, the team's only interception came from linebacker Terrell Suggs.

Manning has faced the Ravens 10 times in the regular season. He is 8-2 in those games, with 25 touchdowns and five interceptions. (And no, all 25 touchdowns didn't come during that opener two years ago in Denver, it just seemed that way.)

Arrington said facing Manning to open the season is "about as tough as it gets," but he is eager for his first game as a Raven.

"It’s not my first rodeo," he said. "You always get some butterflies that morning of. I guess it’s more angst than anything. I’m definitely ready to go out there and get that first hit under way. Then you know you’re back to playing football.”




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Fellow dance student of Ravens' Alex Collins fatally shot in Florida school shooting

USA Today Sports

Fellow dance student of Ravens' Alex Collins fatally shot in Florida school shooting

On Wednesday, February 14, a horrific school shooting claimed the lives of 17 innocent people at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla. 

The tragic event impacted people far and wide, and hit especially close to home for Ravens running back Alex Collins.

The former Arkansas star was born in Plantation, Fla., a suburb of Fort Lauderdale and went to high school just 15 miles south of Douglas High School. 

In the offseason, Collins took Irish dancing lessons to improve his footwork, and following the act of terror, the Ravens' tailback learned that one of his dance partners had been killed in the mass shooting.

17-year-old Cara Loughran attended The Drake school of Irish Dance with Collins in addition to two other Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School students and was fatally shot by the gunman on Wednesday afternoon. 

Collins took to his Twitter account to issue this heartfelt message.


“The school shooting yesterday hit home,” Collins wrote.

“We received confirmation a few hours ago we lost one of the girls, Cara Loughran. Two other girls saw and experienced unspeakable tragedy. My heart goes out to these girls, all their families and their teacher Chrissy.”

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Baltimore Ravens to take on Chicago Bears in Hall of Fame game

USA Today Sports

Baltimore Ravens to take on Chicago Bears in Hall of Fame game

BALTIMORE -- The Baltimore Ravens and Chicago Bears will launch the NFL's 99th season by playing in the annual Hall of Fame game on Aug. 2.

The Ravens' first appearance in the Hall of Fame game, which launches the league's 2018 Enshrinement Week. Former Baltimore linebacker Ray Lewis is among the inductees, along with former Bears linebacker Brian Urlacher.

Lewis, who played 17 seasons with the Ravens, and Urlacher, who played all of his 13 seasons with Chicago, both were elected on the first ballot.

Lewis joins Jonathan Ogden as the only Ravens in the Hall of Fame. Both were selected by Baltimore in the first round of the 1996 draft.

The other members of the Class of 2018 include Bobby Beathard, Robert Brazile, Brian Dawkins, Jerry Kramer, Randy Moss and Terrell Owens. All will be inducted on Saturday, Aug. 4.

This will be the record-tying fifth time that the Bears will play in the Hall of Fame game. They won the previous four, most recently 27-24 over Miami in 2005.