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Do holdouts work?

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Do holdouts work?

Ed Reed is upset about his contract situation and making thinly veiled threats to hold out if a contract extension isnt forthcoming.

Is holding out the answer?

ESPNs Ashley Fox says, resoundingly, that it is not.

Holdouts rarely work, Fox writes. They are bad for players. They are bad for teams. They cause unnecessary distractions and can lead to even more issues, particularly when a player doesn't get what he wants, be it more money or more security.

Reed is under contract this season, due to make a healthy salary of more than 7 million. Yet Reed, who will turn 34 in September, is pining for an extension. He hasnt publicly made known what exactly he is looking for, but how long an extension would the Ravens be willing to give him?

Ravens owner Steve Bisciotti has said that the key to building a team is to pay ascending players, i.e. those whose careers are on the way up. See the large contract given to cornerback Lardarius Webb this offseason. Reed has been many things to the Ravens, but at this point in his career, an ascending player is not one of them.

Whether he wants to admit it, Reed is in the twilight of his remarkable career. The Ravens are not likely to give a long-term extension to a player who threatens retirement every year and will be 35 by the 2013 season.

So Reed, who has seen a pile of money thrown to Webb, and will likely see another pile thrown to Ray Rice and perhaps to Joe Flacco, wants to get in line for his. That is his right.

But holding out won't accomplish anything, Fox writes. Holding out only tends to make things worse. Doing so won't encourage the Ravens to do an extension. It will make them less inclined to do so. Reed would come off as selfish, as not a team player.

Fox notes that DeSean Jacksons holdout at the start of training camp last season was viewed as one of underlying causes of the Eagles disappointing season.

Jackson himself sounds as if he regrets that decision.

Looking back now it really hurt me more than I thought it helped me," Jackson told the Philadelphia Inquirer. "Them feeling like me holding out was more of a statement and trying to prove something. ... The Eagles are a team you don't want to try to force anything with them or strong-arm them.

The same, certainly could be said of the Ravens. Reed would be wise to keep that in mind.

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

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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.

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“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

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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.

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