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Three reasons why Flacco can finally top 4,000 yards passing next season

Three reasons why Flacco can finally top 4,000 yards passing next season

Is a 4,000-yard passing season finally in the cards for Joe Flacco?

Though eight NFL seasons, Flacco has yet to throw for 4,000 yards in any year. He has come close – 3,986 yards in 2014, and 3,912 yards in 2013. And Flacco was on pace to pass throw for more than 4,000 yards last season, before his season-ending knee injury in Week 11.

Here are three reasons why I think Flacco will finally break the 4,000-yard barrier in 2016:

1. The time Flacco misses during OTA’s won’t matter.

Flacco is still not ready to participate in this week’s OTA’s after surgery, but the Ravens hope he will be on the field when training camp begins in late July. That should be plenty of time for Flacco to build chemistry with targets he has never lined up with like wide receivers Mike Wallace, Chris Moore, and Breshad Perriman, and tight end Ben Watson. By Week 1, Flacco will have more than enough practice reps to be ready.

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2. The Ravens’ passing attack should be more explosive.

If they stay healthy, Wallace, Moore, and Perriman will give the Ravens big-play capability. Last season, the Ravens were forced to be methodical, and Flacco’s ability to throw deep was often wasted. Now he has more legitimate deep weapons.

3. Having the same coordinator should help the offense evolve.

The switch from Gary Kubiak to Marc Trestman as offensive coordinator was an adjustment last year, and there were some growing pains. Trestman and Flacco will begin the 2016 season with a comfort level they didn’t have last season. While the Ravens are committed to improving their running game, Trestman is not shy about throwing the football. Twelve quarterbacks threw for more than 4,000 yards last season. I think Flacco will join that list in 2016.

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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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