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Three offensive issues facing Ravens moving forward

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Three offensive issues facing Ravens moving forward

SAN JOSE – The Ravens need to put Week 1 behind them as quickly as possible. It was ugly. Losing a 19-13 decision to the Broncos due to mistakes and missed opportunities. Losing linebacker Terrell Suggs for the season.

Upon further review, here are three offensive concerns for the Ravens, as they spend a week practicing and preparing in San Jose, before their Week 2 game against the Raiders:

1. The wide receiver position is a major issue.

Which wide receivers stepped up Sunday? That’s easy. Nobody did. Marlon Brown and Steve Smith had two catches. Smith let a potential game-winning touchdown pass slip through his hands during the final minute  Michael Campanaro and Kamar Aiken had one catch.  Darren Waller had no catches. If this is what the wide receiver production is going to look like until Breshad Perriman (knee) gets healthy, the Ravens’ offense is going to struggle.

2. Joe Flacco has to play better

The Ravens are only going as far as their quarterback leads them.  Flacco’s numbers Sunday were brutal – 18 for 32, 117 yards, two interceptions, 13.1 quarterback rating. Flacco got hit too much against the Broncos, 17 times. His wide receivers didn’t help him enough. But the pick-six Flacco threw Sunday was a momentum-changer the Ravens never overcame. Even if Smith did not run the route properly, the onus is on Flacco as the franchise quarterback, both to avoid big mistakes, and to overcome them. On Sunday, he did neither.

3. The offensive line was outplayed.

Left tackle Eugene Monroe (concussion) missed all but the first series Sunday.  James Hurst replaced Monroe, and was beaten badly at times by DeMarcus Ware.

Meanwhile, running lanes for Justin Forsett (43 yards) were few and far between. The Ravens expect their offensive line to be a strong point this season. If it’s not, the Ravens won’t be able to run or throw it consistently.

The defense didn’t allow a touchdown Sunday, and held Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning (24-for-40, 175 yards, one interception) in check. But for the Ravens to win consistently, their offense will have to be far more consistent.

RELATED: Ravens report card: Offense

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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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