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Are 'Skins about to boot Cundiff?

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Are 'Skins about to boot Cundiff?

The Ravens'decision to go with rookie kicker Justin Tucker over veteran Billy Cundiff islooking better every day. Tucker, who is11-for-12 this season, accounted for all the scoring in the Ravens' 9-6 win atKansas City on Sunday. Cundiff,meanwhile, missed another field-goal attempt on Sunday, this time from 31yards, in the Redskins' 24-17 loss to Atlanta, and his job with the Redskinscould be in jeopardy. CSNWashington.com is reporting that the Redskins plan tobring in kickers for tryouts on Tuesday. Cundiff, signedby the Redskins the day after the Ravens cut him, is now 7-for-12 this season,with two of the misses from inside 40 yards. He did hit thegame-winner, a 41-yarder, with three seconds left in the Redskins' 24-22 winover Tampa Bay, but that came after Cundiff had already missed three kicksearlier in that game. Against Atlanta,Cundiff's kick proved to be costly; the kick would have given the Redskins a10-0 lead in the first half. Instead, after the miss, the Falcons marched downand tied the game at 7 just before halftime. Cundiff was then greeted byboo-birds at FedEx Field when he came out for the second half. After the game,Cundiff met with reporters and said, "You look at the final score andobviously, even if I would've made that field goal we still would've neededfour more points."CSNWashington'sRich Tandler, for one, wasn't buying that. "SorryBilly, wrong answer," Tandler wrote on his Redskins blog. "Eventhough he is mathematically correct, that is just not what you say at thattime.""It wouldsurprise nobody if that was Cundiffs final meeting with the media in theRedskins locker room," Tandler added. "If that turns out to be true,it wasnt a very good way to go out."Cundiff spent 2 12 seasons with the Ravens, earning a Pro Bowl appearance in 2010 and a new contract in 2011. But he will forever be remembered for his missed 32-yarder in the closing seconds of the 2011 AFC Championship Game at New England that would have tied the game.
The Ravens stuck by Cundiff after the miss, and the Ravens' kicking job was still seen as his to lose in training camp. But he was beat out by Tucker, the undrafted rookie from Texas who exhibited poise, accuracy and a huge leg in camp and has continued to do so through the first five games.In addition to scoring all the Ravens' points in the win over Kansas City, Tucker hit a franchise-record tying 56-yarder at Philadelphia and a game-winning 27-yarder on the final play against New England.
There's no wordwhich kickers will audition for the Redskins. Cundiff replaced Graham Gano, whohad competed for the Redskins job in training camp with Neil Rackers. Both remain available. Otherveteran kickers who are still free agents include Josh Brown, Ryan Longwell andOlindo Mare.

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Ravens not counting on having LB C.J. Mosley vs. Broncos on Sunday

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Ravens not counting on having LB C.J. Mosley vs. Broncos on Sunday

BALTIMORE -- Coming off a long weekend following their first loss of the season, the Baltimore Ravens have implemented a contingency plan for moving forward without three-time Pro Bowl linebacker C.J. Mosley.

Mosley bruised his left knee Thursday night in a 34-23 defeat at Cincinnati. Although the fifth-year standout receives a few extra days to recover, it's unlikely he will ready for Sunday's game against unbeaten Denver.

"It isn't a structural issue. That's good news," coach John Harbaugh said Monday. "We'll just see how that thing comes along and keep our fingers crossed."

Rookie linebacker Kenny Young and Patrick Onwuasor played the position after Mosley left in the first quarter. Though the Ravens tightened up defensively in the second half, they yielded touchdowns on four straight series after Mosley's departure.

"It definitely seemed like things were a little bit scrambled when you lose a guy like that," cornerback Marlon Humphrey said. "Just him being out there makes everything smoother."

To help fill the void, the Ravens on Monday signed Albert McClellan , who played six years for Baltimore before being cut on Sept. 1.

McClellan missed all of last year with a knee injury but has 90 games of NFL experience, all with the Ravens.

"Albert is a very good football player. He knows everything we do," Harbaugh said. "He gives us a lot on special teams and can play middle linebacker. I would say he kind of solidifies in there a little bit, having so many young players in the group."

To make room for McClellan, the Ravens placed cornerback Maurice Canady on injured reserve with a thigh injury. Harbaugh said it's not a season-ending injury, and it's possible that Canady could return later in the season.

Mosley led the Ravens last year with a career-high 132 tackles and is in charge of calling the plays on defense. That role has been handed to safety Eric Weddle.

Young appears in position to make his first NFL start. Selected out of UCLA in the fourth round of the NFL draft, the 23-year-old Young made a favorable impression before his making seven tackles last week in Cincinnati.

"He's going a great job. We're real happy with him," Harbaugh said. "He's very smart, very studious, very conscientious. I think his learning curb is steep."

After beating Buffalo 47-3 in the opener, the Ravens (1-1) took a huge step back last week. The Bengals led 28-7 in the second quarter and cruised to the finish.

Following a short week, the Ravens enjoyed a rare weekend that did not involve playing football.

"Yeah, that's valuable to have that, as far as recovery and things like that, and study," Harbaugh said.

It also provided the team some extra time to get over the Cincinnati game.

"You just can't beat yourself up too much because if you do, that just takes you in a downward path," Harbaugh said. "What it's going to boil down to in the end is, who's mentally tougher over the long haul? You've got to keep grinding."

There are plenty of unbeaten teams remaining, including the Broncos, but Harbaugh believes it's way too early to start identifying the best clubs in the league.

"Nobody in the NFL is a good football team yet," he said. "It remains to be seen who the good football teams are, and that's what we've got to try to become."

Harbaugh said tight end Hayden Hurst (foot) and defensive tackle Willie Henry (abdomen) won't practice this week.

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Ravens Week 2 Player of the Game: WR John Brown

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USA TODAY Sports

Ravens Week 2 Player of the Game: WR John Brown

Coming off a strong Week 1 performance, the Ravens marched into Cincinnati for Week 2 and put up a dud.

The defense struggled immediately without C.J. Mosley, and Joe Flacco and the offense saw their share of unfortunate turnovers. 

While there was much to be concerned about in their 34-23 loss, one Raven that brought a high to a mainly low night was offseason addition John Brown.

Brown's night was highlighted by an insane 21-yard touchdown that put the Ravens within five in the fourth quarter. Prior to that, Flacco connected with the wide receiver for a 45-yard completion on third down. 'Smoke' also drew a 30-yard penalty that helped set up a touchdown, finishing his night with four catches for 92 yards.

The connection between Flacco and Brown was apparent throughout training camp, and in two games, the 28-year-old has become a trusted target. He currently leads the Ravens with 136 yards and two touchdowns and his 19.43-yard average is well above his fellow receivers. The speed he possess makes it difficult for defenses to keep up, and if Brown can stay healthy, he could be the consistent deep-threat the team's been looking for for years. 

 “I’m satisfied, and I did pretty good," Brown said after the Ravens' Week 1 win. "But it doesn’t stop right here.”

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