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Questions on the Ravens

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Questions on the Ravens

Now that the Ravens are halfway through the exhibition season, theres a few things that have piqued my curiousity. Here's a brief look at them:
1 Is there really a kicking duel between Billy Cundiff and Justin Tucker? It takes a lot for an undrafted rookie to push a veteran kicker out of his job, but Tuckers certainly trying to make a case for himself. He nailed field goals of 45 and 50 yards with room to spare on the longer one while Cundiff hit a 33-yarder in the loss to Detroit. Tucker has been strong throughout camp, just like Cundiff, and the former Texas kicker has shown hes got the tools. It might really be a roll of the dice to pick Tucker, but if the Ravens dont, heres betting someone else in the NFL will.
2. Is there a problem with the pass rush? Yes, its early. Yes, were still in the pre-season. But the Ravens really have not shown much of a pass rush yet, and thats something theyre going to have to fix by the time the regular season starts. And they know that. The fact that theyre going to be without top pass rusher Terrell Suggs has been discussed ad nauseam by the local media. Hes not going to be here for awhile so the team needs to find help there. So far, its not really showing up. They blitzed a lot against the Lions, who took advantage of it and said thank you. But once again, this is the pre-season, not the regular season, and lets see what happens in the final two games.
3. Will the passing game look more like the Lions? Well, not many teams do. But just like above, its early. If Torrey Smith can keep developing, and Jacoby Jones contributes, theyll be effective. Quarterback Joe Flacco still will probably look for Ray Rice a lot, and if the passing game can be more consistent than last year, everyone will be happy. Remember, the team is not going to show all -- or even most -- of their cards during pre-season games that mean absolutely nothing.

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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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