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Ravens get a break, but then need to bounce back


Ravens get a break, but then need to bounce back

The Ravens are probably very happy to get a break at this time, and the question is what will they do after it. 

There's no question they've got a bunch of problems to fix. Coach John Harbaugh and his staff need to straighten some stuff out on offense and defense-- and they know this. 

The question is how -- and if -- they can do it after the break.

Joe Flacco's been very good at times and not so good at times. He probably had his worst game of the season Sunday in the blowout loss to Houston. Flacco had almost no time to throw the ball and got to know the Houston defense very well. 

For some reason, the Ravens still aren't giving Ray Rice the ball a lot. That's the most puzzling thing about the offense this year. Why isn't Rice getting the ball more is a question I've heard more than just about anything else. 

The Ravens clearly want to throw the ball more. That's fine and understandable. But Rice is one of the most devastating backs in the NFL, and why he's not getting a chance to do something with it is confusing. 

The questions on defense are easy to figure out. They're having problems with run defense, something that's not been a problem in over 10 years. They're also having trouble with pass defense, another issue that hasn't popped up in a long time. 

One good thing is the return of Terrell Suggs. He became a force in Sunday's loss to the Texans in various ways. The Ravens were expecting  younger players to step up and fill in for those they lost in free agency and that just hasn't happened yet. 

The bottom line is there's a lot of issues to straighten out and, despite all of that, the Ravens remain in first place with a 5-2 record. Let's see what happens when the games begin again. 

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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.