Will the Ravens face running back Matt Forte next season in a Patriots uniform?
Forte announced Friday on Instagram that he would not return to the Bears, which the team confirmed via a statement. Forte, the Bears' second all-time leading rusher behind Walter Payton, will have plenty of suitors as a free agent despite being 30 years old. One of those teams figures to the Patriots, who have a definite need at running back. Patriots running back Dion Lewis tore his ACL in Week 9, and Steven Jackson and LeGarrette Blount are both free agents. Even before Forte's announcement Friday, several reports were already linking Forte to the Patriots whenever he became available.
Forte has said that if he left the Bears, he wanted to join a Super Bowl contender. The Patriots certainly fit that description, and Forte fits the mold of a player that coach Bill Belechick covets -- versatile, and low maintenance in the locker room.
The Packers, Broncos, and Seahawks are among other contenders who may have interest in Forte. He will have options, but the Patriots can make a compelling case if they make Forte a competitive offer. The Ravens did not play the Patriots in 2015, but they are on the Ravens' schedule next season. It stands to reason that Forte is also on the Patriots' radar.
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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.”
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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