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Should Reed have sat out?


Should Reed have sat out?

Ravens defensive tackle Haloti Ngata went through pre-game warmups on Sunday, but then, nursing a bad shoulder and a bad knee, he sat out the Ravens' 55-20 win over the Raiders. That essentially bought him an extra week of rest, which could be huge over the second half of the season.

After watching Ed Reed leave the Raiders game in obvious pain with an injured shoulder, it's fair to wonder whether he, too, should have taken all or most of the day off.

To be clear: Players want to be on the field, perhaps none more so than Reed. The guy simply loves to play. But Reed admitted a month or so that he's been bothered by a shoulder injury. Reed downplays the injury at times -- at one point last month he said, "I ain't no pitcher. I don't play baseball.  So long as I'm not throwing ... it's nothing to worry about."

Except maybe it is.

It seemed to be a factor more than once against the Raiders. The most obvious example came when he failed to wrap up Raiders receiver Darrius Heyward-Bey, who broke free from Reed and scampered 55 yards for a touchdown late in the second quarter.

After that play, Reed left the field grimacing, his shoulder clearly bothering him, Reed returned to action in the second half but watched most of the fourth quarter in sweatpants, effectively asking out of the game with the Ravens up big.

"I was having a pretty bad game as an individual, and I really didn’t want to go back out there as a competitor playing the way I was playing," Reed said after the game. "But we’ve got guys that can step up, step in, and needed to get those reps and see what other guys can do."

It is certainly unusual to hear Reed say, "I really didn't want to go back out there." After the game, he again downplayed the injury, saying, "I’m fine. It was just a minor stinger, not very serious.”

If all of this sounds familiar, it's because Reed has been down this road before. He is a gamer and has played through injuries in the past. But at times, including last year, while bothering neck and shoulder injuries, his tackling fell off demonstrably. At what point do the Ravens reach a tipping point with Reed? Is Reed at 85 percent better than James Ihedigbo or others that might take Reed's place? What about Reed at 50 percent?

That's a tough question that the Ravens might have to address at some point. Ngata inched his way back toward 100 percent by taking Sunday off in advance of the meat-grinder of an upcoming schedule. Reed, though, had no such luck, and it remains to see whether that proves costly.


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Baltimore Ravens Roundup: Ravens place Marquise Brown, Jaylon Ferguson on reserve/NFI list

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Baltimore Ravens Roundup: Ravens place Marquise Brown, Jaylon Ferguson on reserve/NFI list

With training camp just six days away, here is the latest news surrounding the Baltimore Ravens.

1. Ian Rapoport reported that the Ravens have placed Marquise Brown, Jaylon Ferguson and two others on the reserve/NFI list. He later added that Brown is still recovering from Lisfranc surgery but is "progressing well" and Ferguson is dealing with a "minor hamstring" injury.

2. The entire Baltimore Ravens class is officially under contract after the signing of wide receiver Miles Boykin. Boykin was a third-round pick out of Notre Dame.

3. Michael Vick joined The Sports Junkies on 106.7 The Fan Friday morning and when asked which young quarterbacks in the NFL most emulate his style, he answered: "Lamar Jackson" along with Kyler Murray and Cam Newton.

Looking Ahead:

July 24: Ravens training camp begins. Rookies are set to report a week earlier on Wednesday, July 17. 

The 2019 NFL schedule is set! See the Baltimore Ravens defend the AFC North at M&T Bank Stadium this season. Get your tickets now at www.BaltimoreRavens.com/tickets.

Credit: Rotoworld and Baltimore Ravens for news points.


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A big Year 2 ahead, Lamar Jackson isn’t worried about Madden ratings

A big Year 2 ahead, Lamar Jackson isn’t worried about Madden ratings

The number eight is sports royalty in the city of Baltimore thanks to Cal Ripken Jr.

If Lamar Jackson has the career many are hoping for, he’ll be another reason for that one day down the road.

For now, he’s a young, athletic quarterback entering his second season in Charm City. But his successful rookie year hasn’t been reflected in Madden NFL 20’s newest ratings.

Jackson came in with an overall rating of 76, tied for 24th among all quarterbacks. Unsurprisingly, his athleticism is highly-regarded, as he leads all signal-callers in speed, acceleration, agility, and elusiveness.

Questions abound about his throwing abilities, leading to the low rating. But that’s not a concern for Jackson himself.

“I can’t feel no way,” the quarterback told media members prior to throwing out the first pitch at the Orioles-Nationals game Wednesday night. “You know, I don’t make Madden. That’s them. But I feel like our team, we’re going to show ‘em this season.”

Jackson continued to praise the Ravens roster. When asked about the high ratings for teammates like Marquise “Hollywood” Brown and Earl Thomas, Jackson put his thoughts quite succinctly: “We look stacked!”

Of course, with speed and acceleration ratings like Jackson has, it’s fun to imagine how he might fit in on a baseball diamond as well.

“Whew, somewhere in the middle, to make a play,” Orioles manager Brandon Hyde decided when asked where the Ravens quarterback might play on his roster.

“I’m looking forward to meeting him. I’m a big football fan, so watched him play a lot. And if he wanted to play center field or up the middle, it’d be great,” Hyde continued.

The speedy quarterback agreed, though it came with a caveat.

“Probably,” Jackson quickly answered when asked about his best fit being center field. “But you know, I’m the Ravens QB right now, so I’m good.”

He doesn’t know what his walk-up song would be if he played baseball, but Jackson was definitive about one thing at least: his hot dog preferences.

“I don’t really eat mustard,” he emphasized. “So I just put ketchup, relish...I just go from there. Pretty standard.”

When he’s not eating hot dogs, Jackson is working hard to build chemistry with his new receiving corps, and he seemed optimistic about the results it will bring on the field.

“Looking pretty good,” he described. “You’ll have to see for yourself.”

Knowing how many dual Orioles and Ravens fans there are in Baltimore, Jackson was also happy to provide a little hope as the city’s attention starts to shift from baseball to football. He gave a message to O’s fans who have sat through months of losing baseball and are looking to the Ravens to bring winning back to the city.

“Look forward to us coming out and balling,” he said. “Can’t say too much right now, [the] season’s not here!”

The Ravens season will be here soon enough, and when it is, Jackson will be ready to go out and show both local and national fans what he can do, regardless of what his Madden rating says.