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A short night for starters


A short night for starters

If you want to see the Ravens best-known players in action Thursday night in the teams preseason opener, youre advised to be in your seat for the opening kickoff.

Head coach John Harbaugh said Tuesday he doesnt expect many of his starters to play more than a quarter, if that much, in the teams preseason opener against the Falcons in Atlanta.

It will be a standard first preseason game concept, so well be looking at anywhere from a certain set number of plays to about a quarter, maybe a quarter-plus for some of the starters, Harbaugh said. Some guys wont play at all. Some of the more senior veteran guys wont play at all by design.

Once the known quantities are on the sidelines, the rest of the game will belong to the backups and fringe players fighting for roster spots.

I think you will get an opportunity to see most of the guys we have here on the roster at the (quarterback) position, Ravens quarterbacks coach Jim Caldwell said.

Joe Flacco will start under center and probably take several series. Asked what he expected, he seemed caught off guard.

I dont know, I havent even figured out how long Im playing yet, Flacco said. So, well see, but hopefully my expectations will be we get the ball, whether its to open the game or once they turn the ball over on downs or whatever happens, and we go down and score a touchdown, and then thatll be a good day.

Backup Tyrod Taylor presumably will replace him in the second quarter, and if Caldwell is right, Curtis Painter and undrafted rookie Chester Stewart will also see some playing time.

Its all about timing and execution, Harbaugh said when asked what he is looking to see. How crisp do we play? How do we execute under pressure? How do the guys take that execution from a practice environment and take it to a game environment against another team in a live-type situation? Its all about executing our offense.

Defensively, it isnt clear whether Ray Lewis or Ed Reed will even suit up. The majority of the night will belong to unknowns and rookies getting their first taste of NFL football.

While the game will provide fans with the first live look at the Ravens since their AFC title-game loss, Harbaugh was careful not to overplay its importance. The coaches have zero time game-planning for the Falcons.

Its part of the training camp process. Its not a regular season game, so we dont treat it like that, Harbaugh said. But its a big part of the training camp process. Its going to be really fun to get down there and see where were at.

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Fellow dance student of Ravens' Alex Collins fatally shot in Florida school shooting

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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.