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What will it cost for Ravens to keep Kamar Aiken?

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What will it cost for Ravens to keep Kamar Aiken?

The Ravens can begin their free-agent shopping on Monday, but before any deals are done with free agents, the Ravens still have some housekeeping to take care of before the start of the new year on Wednesday.

Before 4 p.m. Wednesday, the Ravens must decide whether to tender their restricted free agents, and the biggest name on that list is wide receiver Kamar Aiken. The other restricted free agents are safety Brynden Trawick, receiver Marlon Brown and tight end Chase Ford.

If the Ravens want to keep Aiken, they probably need to assign him a second-round tender, which would cost roughly $2.55 million. That means if another team made Aiken an offer that the Ravens refused to match -- and the Ravens would have the right to match any offer -- the Ravens would receive a second-round draft pick as compensation.

If the Ravens offer Aiken the low-round tender ($1.67 million), the Ravens would get nothing in return if Aiken left because he was undrafted.

Aiken was the star to emerge from the Ravens injury-ravaged receiver corps last season, leading the team with 75 catches for 944 yards and five touchdowns.

Although the Ravens expect Steve Smith Sr. and Breshad Perriman to return from injuries, Aiken has shown he belongs in the Ravens plans going forward.

To ensure that, expect the Ravens to assign him the second-round tender.

The Ravens would probably like to get away with a low-round tender, which would save them nearly $1 million in cap room. Every dollar helps. But the chance of losing Aiken to a team with more cap money -- and getting nothing in return -- is a chance the Ravens can't afford to take.

As for the other three restricted free agents, the Ravens could assign a low-round tender to Trawick, a backup safety who has been a valuable special teamer (when not crashing into Jacoby Jones...). Trawick had a team-high nine special teams tackles this season. But are the Ravens willing to commit $1.67 million to him? It's also possible Trawick will not be tendered but will be offered a lower-priced deal.

That's more than is expected for Ford or Brown. Brown's stock has plummeted since his rookie season. Brown, who had 49 catches for 524 yards and seven touchdowns as a rookie in 2013, fell out of favor in 2014 -- a series of drops didn't help -- and finished with 24 catches for 255 yards. This past season, Brown had 14 catches for 112 yards. If Brown's NFL career continues, it will probably be elsewhere.

[RELATED: Free agency shopping begins on Monday

 

 

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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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