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Three things about Josh McCown, who will start Sunday against Ravens

Three things about Josh McCown, who will start Sunday against Ravens

With Robert Griffin III sidelined with his shoulder injury,  the Browns will turn to 37-year-old Josh McCown in Week 2 when they take on the Ravens. 

Here is what you need to know:

1. McCown has a 2-1 record against the Ravens, and has left an impression on coach John Harbaugh.

Asked about McCown during his press conference Monday, Harbaugh did not immediately recall the Ravens’ lone victory over McCown last season. However, Harbaugh did recall both losses to McCown – o one last season, and in 2013 when McCown was with the Bears.

 “I just remember this guy just having no conscious, and just throwing the ball in there and completing passes against us,” Harbaugh said. “We have a lot of respect for him. We know what kind of a player he is, we know how good he is. I think he’s been super-good against us. We know we’re going to have our hands full. We’re going to need all hands on deck to get ready for the offense led by Josh McCown.”

2. McCown has thrown 120 straight passes against the Ravens without throwing an interception.

The Ravens haven’t been able to force McCown into making mistakes. If that holds true Sunday, it will increase the Browns’ chances of winning.

3. McCown has a good relationship with Ravens offensive coordinator Marc Trestman, who spent two seasons as McCown’s head coach with the Bears.

Trestman can give the Ravens some insight into McCown’s strengths and weaknesses. But frankly, that hasn’t kept McCown from hurting the Ravens before.


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Ravens sign Crabtree to three-year deal

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Ravens sign Crabtree to three-year deal

The Baltimore Ravens have signed WR Michael Crabtree to a three-year deal on Friday according to general manager and executive vice president Ozzie Newsome.

The deal is apparently worth $21 million, according to Adam Shefter.

After being released by the Raiders Thursday following the signing of Jordy Nelson, Crabtree heads to the Ravens less than 24 hours later.


The 31-year-old is coming off a 2017 season when he recorded 58 receptions for 618 yards and eight touchdowns. In 2016 he posted 89 receptions for 1,003 yards and eight touchdowns.

Since 2015, the Texas Tech product has scored 25 receiving touchdowns, the fifth-most in the NFL. Crabtree and Steelers WR Antonio Brown are the only NFL players to post at least eight touchdown catches in each of the past three seasons.


In all, Crabtree has played nine NFL seasons – six of them with San Francisco (2009-14) and three with Oakland (2015-17). The former first-round draft pick (10th overall, Texas Tech) has registered 579 receptions for 6,870 yards (11.9 avg.) and 51 touchdowns in 125 career games (122 starts).

“Michael has played very well against the Ravens, so we know firsthand the attributes he brings to the game,” Newsome said in a team statement. “He is a smart, tough, physical receiver who battles for the ball. We like his temperament and believe he is a good fit for our football team, on and off the field.”

Since he entered the NFL in 2009, Crabtree’s 51 receiving scores rank 10th among active wide receivers, while his receptions (579) are seventh, and his receiving yards (6,870) are 12th.

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Ryan Grant's health issue and why the Ravens couldn't control voiding his contract

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Ryan Grant's health issue and why the Ravens couldn't control voiding his contract

The most obvious move in the NFL this offseason was the Ravens signing a new wide receiver (or three). It was less obvious why the team decided to commit so much money to former Redskins receiver Ryan Grant.

Grant has long been beloved by his coaches and teammates, but the results have never been there on game day. He has some potential to improve if given a larger role in a team's offense, which he likely would have had in Baltimore, but it never made much sense to offer him a 4-year contract worth nearly 30 million, with $14.5 million guaranteed.

Thankfully for fans who were uninspired by the reported agreement, Grant was unable to pass his physical and will not be joining the team.


At a press conference Friday morning, GM Ozzie Newsome called the void a "medical decision" that Newsome had no control over. 

NFL insider Ian Rapoport reported that Grant is recovering from a Grade 2 sprained ankle that would need two months rest.

You have to feel for Grant, who by all accounts has worked his tail off for many years just waiting for his chance. It's never easy missing out on nearly $15 million dollars guaranteed, but Grant should be able to find work with another team.

The timing of this news, coming so soon after former Raider Michael Crabtree became available, seemed fishy to some.

At Friday's press conference, Newsome also said the team would have still pursued Crabtree if they signed Grant. 

It's probably not fair to suggest that an NFL franchise would actually so publicly back out of a deal just because another option came along, as any team with that reputation would struggle to attract future free agents. That said, it could end up working out splendidly for the team.

Besides, if all else is equal, shouldn't a team located in Baltimore be going after a guy named CRABtree?