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Would taking RB Ezekiel Elliott at No. 6 be right move for Ravens?

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Would taking RB Ezekiel Elliott at No. 6 be right move for Ravens?

Would it make sense for the Ravens to draft Ohio St. running back Ezekiel Elliott with the No. 6 pick?

Only if the Ravens are convinced Elliott would be a 1,200-yard back for the next four or five years. Otherwise, the Ravens would be making a mistake, because:

1. They have multiple needs on defense, and can address one of them at No. 6.

2. They are already deep at running back with Justin Forsett and Buck Allen, along with Lorenzo Taliaferro, Terrance West, Terrence Magee, and the expected arrival of the Trent Richardson experiment.

3. Elliott had 596 carries in college. Running backs, even young ones, can decline quickly once they reach a certain number of carries.

ESPN draft analyst Mel Kiper Jr. created some buzz recently when he tabbed the Ravens picking Elliott with the No. 6 pick in his most recent mock draft.

It’s an out-of-the-box call, and it can’t be totally dismissed. Elliott ran for over 1,800 yards the past two seasons, and he can run inside, outside, and catch the football. If Elliott became the kind of player in the NFL that he was at Ohio St., he would give the Ravens a younger, faster back than they already have. He would make their offense more explosive,. Not only as a runner, but forcing safeties to creep into the box, making it easier for quarterback Joe Flacco and his wide receivers to attack defenses in the passing game.

However, Forsett gained 1,266 yards in 2014, and was on pace for another 1,000-yard season last year until he broke his arm in November. And while Forsett will turn 31 years old in October, the Ravens have multiple options behind Forsett if he is injured again, or shows sign of decline.

I think the Ravens would be best served taking Oregon defensive lineman DeForest Buckner, or Ohio St. defensive end Joey Bosa, or UCLA linebacker Myles Jack. One of those three should be available at No.  6. However, if the Ravens pull the riskier move and draft Elliott, it means they think he’ll be special. It also means they’ll be taking a huge gamble.   

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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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