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Ravens report card: Offense

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Ravens report card: Offense

It’s time to grade the Ravens after their 37-33 loss at Oakland on Sunday. We begin with the offense, which put up 33 points on the road:

QUARTERBACK: B+
Joe Flacco finished 32-of-45 for 382 yards, 7 yards shy of his career high, and a pair of touchdowns. Flacco engineered an impressive 93-yard touchdown drive in the fourth quarter that tied the game at 30, but then a later drive stalled when Flacco’s pass for Steve Smith in the end zone sailed a bit high and Smith couldn’t come down in-bounds. Flacco made too many back-foot throws, and the Ravens also had too many drives end with field goals.

RUNNING BACKS: B
The Ravens averaged 4.4 yards a carry, with Justin Forsett gaining 68 yards on 15 carries and Lorenzo Taliaferro running seven times for 34 yards and a touchdown. Forsett converted a fourth-and-1 and later a third-and-15, and both of those drives ended with points. Forsett (4), Taliaferro (3), Buck Allen (1) and Kyle Juszczyk (1) also totaled nine receptions, though the group averaged only about 4 yards a catch.

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OFFENSIVE LINE: B+
The Ravens tackles were much improved, with James Hurst and Rick Wagner holding the edges far better than they did against the Broncos. Flacco wasn’t sacked at all and was officially hit just once. The Ravens run blocking was much improved as well, although third-and-short remains a struggle. The Ravens did have one forgettable sequence with back-to-back false starts (one by tight end Crockett Gillmore) and Kelechi Osemele was flagged for holding twice.

TIGHT END: A-
Crockett Gillmore had the most productive day of his career, with five catches for 88 yards and two touchdowns, but he did almost all of his damage in the first half. Gillmore carried three Raiders to the end zone on his second touchdown. But Gillmore had just one catch after halftime. Rookie Maxx Williams finished with one catch for 8 yards.

WIDE RECEIVERS: B+
Steve Smith (10 catches, 150 yards) was a one-man wrecking crew, and in fact for much of the game he was the Ravens only receiver option. During one stretch, Flacco didn’t even bother looking at any other receiver. Kamar Aiken (5-89) rebounded well after he fumbled away the Ravens first offensive play. Marlon Brown (2-12) wasn’t much of a factor, and it remains curious that the Ravens don’t try to take advantage of his size in the red zone. The Ravens did try to go to 6-6 rookie Darren Waller in the red zone, but he couldn’t get open and looked timid. And has anyone seen Michael Campanaro? The speedy slot receiver wasn’t targeted at all.

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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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