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Smith, Williams battling to start-- sort of


Smith, Williams battling to start-- sort of

The battle between Jimmy Smith and Cary Williams at cornerback is something many are watching at training camp this summer.
But in the end, some people dont realize the actual meaning of the battle. Defensive coordinator Dean Pees talked about that when speaking with the media at camp a few days ago.
You guys have watched enough NFL football to know that two corners are not going to get you through a season or even through a game, Pees said. So, between sub, nickel, dime, and all that stuff where you use corners, where you get teams that run three-wideyou are going to use all those guys.
Translation: a lot of guys are going to get playing time whether they start or not.
But Smith and Williams truly are competing for a lead spot. Theres no doubt about that. The Ravens expected big things from Smith from the moment they picked him in the first round last year. He injured his ankle early in the season opener and missed the next four games.
After returning, Smith eventually settled in and played well going down the stretch and into the post-season. He made a great interception plus a 39-yard return in the AFC title game at New England.
Williams was a bit of a surprise last year, taking over as the starter and turning a solid effort all season. Hes coming back from off-season surgery, and the battle for a top spot is on in camp.
Its great competition, Pees said. We are very lucky to have two big guys like that fighting for that position. Thats kind of a luxury. Thats a very fortunate situation for us, and I think both of them are handling it very well.
But, in the end, the Ravens use a lot of packages which will employ a bunch of defensive backs in a bunch of situations. Both guys will have big roles. The only question is who will be doing what and when and how.
We have a Raven defense, which is four DBs, and we have a sub defense, which is five DBs, Pees said. We might start the game in five DBs, so one of the outside backers is out, well, that guys a starter. He started the game, but if we started in Raven, that doesnt mean the other guyso, all of those guys are or wil be a starter at corner, basically.

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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.