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Joe Flacco hooks up linemen with virtual reality systems

Joe Flacco hooks up linemen with virtual reality systems

OWINGS MILLS – Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco is generous when playing Santa Claus to his offensive linemen.

After Friday’s practice, all 14 Ravens offensive linemen found virtual reality systems at their locker. Giving gifts to his bodyguards is an annual thing with Flacco, and when asked if he got one for himself, Flacco smiled and said, “No.”

“Joe hooked us up,” said Pro Bowl guard Marshal Yanda, as he was carrying his present from the locker room on Friday.

The Oculus Rift and Alienware systems that Flacco purchased usually go for about $3,000 each, although Flacco wouldn’t say how much he spent. 

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Flacco just feels the gesture shows how much he appreciates the protection his offensive line gives him.

“I’m not really into that kind of stuff,” said Flacco, who said he wasn’t much of a video game or systems player. “That may change as my kids get older. Then again, I’m not sure I want them sitting in the house all day.”

What Flacco really wants for Christmas is a win against the Steelers.  He certainly knows how to put his offensive line in a good mood before a big game.

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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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