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Ravens report card: Grading the offense vs. the Jaguars


Ravens report card: Grading the offense vs. the Jaguars

It's time to get out the red pen and grade the Ravens after their stunning, last-second loss to the Jaguars, beginning with the offense. The report card please:


Joe Flacco's numbers looked good if you play fantasy football -- 34 for 45 for 316 yards and three touchdowns. He also had a 16-yard run that set up a touchdown. But that doesn't tell the whole story. Flacco turned the ball over on the Ravens first three possessions of the second half, with two interceptions and a fumble. His accuracy was only fair; one interception came on a ball that glanced off the arms of a fully-extended Kamar Aiken, and other throws were off the mark as well. Flacco is going to end the season with some gaudy passing numbers, but that doesn't indicate his level of play.


The grade might have been lower here were it not for contributions as receivers. Still, what does Marc Trestman have against running the ball in the second quarter? For the second straight week, he all but ignored the run in the second quarter. This week, the Ravens had 18 offensive snaps in the second quarter -- 16 were passes, two were runs, and one of the runs was a scramble by Flacco that was supposed to be a pass. In other words, Flacco dropped back to throw on 17 of 18 offensive snaps in the second quarter. How is the run game supposed to get going that way? Justin Forsett had 2 yards on two carries at halftime and finished with 53 yards on 14 carries. Fullback Kyle Juszczyk was a factor out of the backfield with five catches for 47 yards, and Justin Forsett had four catches, but totaled just 11 yards.


Flacco was not threatened very often as the Ravens line held up well. He was sacked once, which ended up being a turnover, but that's on Flacco. The Ravens had decent success running in the second half, mainly going left behind Eugene Monroe. The Ravens line also did not commit a penalty all day in a game in which Flacco dropped back to pass 47 times (45 passes, plus one sack plus one scramble). Jeremy Zuttah battled through a shoulder injury and missed just two snaps.



The Ravens frequently employed formations with all three tight ends, and that appears to be one of the Life After Steve Smith adaptations the Ravens will turn to. All three tight ends contributed. Rookie Maxx Williams had his most productive day as a pro with four catches for 40 yards and a touchdown. Crockett Gillmore (4-42) also caught a touchdown pass and Nick Boyle (3-35) continued to show he is more than just a blocker, though his hurdling act is an injury waiting to happen. Overall, this trio contributed 11 catches for 117 yards and two scores.


Kamar Aiken finished with seven catches for 73 yards and took a beating doing it. He did, though, have a couple of passes glance off his hands. And Marc Trestman should just forget about sending him deep on a fly pattern. It just isn't his skill set. The Ravens tried it three times yesterday, and all three times Aiken was well covered and the passes were incomplete. Chris Givens made his first start for the Ravens and had four catches for 37 yards and a touchdown. Jeremy Butler also made his first career catch, and it appears the phaseout of Marlon Brown has begun. He played just five snaps on offense.

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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.