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Upon further review ...Revisiting our 10 predictions

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Upon further review ...Revisiting our 10 predictions

It's time again to go under the replay hood and review our 10 predictions for the Ravens-Browns game:

1. The Ravens will score a first-quarter touchdown.

CORRECT. For the first time since Week 2, the Ravens found the end zone in the first quarter. Establishing the run early, Ray Rice had six carries for 32 yards on the Ravens' opening drive, which ended with his 8-yard touchdown run. It was the Ravens' first opening-drive touchdown all season.

2. Ray Rice will have 20 carries.

CORRECT. As expected, the Ravens made Rice a bigger part of the offense than they had in quite some time. The Browns bottled him up for long stretches, but Rice finished with a season-high 25 carries for 98 yards and one touchdown.

3. Bernard Pierce will have at least six touches.

CORRECT. Spelling Rice at times, Pierce also established a season high with seven carries for 26 yards as the Ravens stayed true to the running game. Late in the first quarter, the rookie from Temple took a toss around left end and scored on a 12-yard run for his first touchdown as a pro.

4. Anquan Boldin will have at least four catches.

CORRECT. Boldin torched the Browns in the earlier meeting this season between the teams, with nine catches for 131 yards. He wasn't quite as prolific this time, with five catches for 57 yards, but he was a huge part of the win. On the Ravens' opening touchdown drive, Boldin had three catches for 30 yards. Then in the fourth quarter, after the Ravens offense had been in a deep freeze, Boldin caught a 21-yard pass for their first first down in more than a quarter.

5. Joe Flacco will throw fewer than 30 passes.

CORRECT. With the Ravens turning to Rice and Pierce out of the backfield, the passing game took a back seat. Flacco completed 15 of 24 passes for 153 yards and one touchdown, the nice 19-yard, fake inside, spin outside, beat them to the corner score by Torrey Smith. Flacco has never thrown 30 passes against the Browns, and his total of 24 passes Sunday was his lowest of the season.

6. Trent Richardson will rush for 100 yards.

CORRECT.  The Ravens run defense was much improved over the past few weeks, but Richardson still proved to be a handful, rushing 25 times for 102 yards. Overall, though, the Browns rushed for 116 yards, a dramatic improvement for a Ravens run defense that had yielded an average of 207 yards over the previous three games.

7. Terrell Suggs will have a sack.

INCORRECT. Coming off the bye week and seeing his second game action since his Achilles injury, Suggs did play but was fairly quiet, with four tackles and no sacks. Linebacker Dannell Ellerbe recorded the Ravens' only sack of Browns quarterback Brandon Weeden.

8. Josh Gordon will have a catch of at least 25 yards.

CORRECT. The Browns rookie was open at times and Weeden didn't see him or didn't get him the ball, but Gordon did have one catch of 26 yards. He entered the game averaging an NFL-best 22.3 yards a catch, and finished with two catches for 38 yards.

9. The Ravens will win time of possession.

CORRECT. The defense finally got a breather this week after being on the field way too long the previous few games. Relying primarily on the running game, the Ravens had the ball for 31:32, marking the first time since the first Browns game in Week 4 that the Ravens won the time of possession battle.

10.Ravens 23, Browns 20

KIND OF CORRECT. The Ravens extended their streak to 10 straight wins over the Browns, and won their 15th straight game immediately after a loss, but as we predicted, it wasn't easy. The Browns were their own worst enemy at times, but credit the Ravens for stiffening in the red zone and keeping Cleveland out of the end zone. The Ravens' 25-15 win makes John Harbaugh 5-0 immediately after the bye.

 

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Ravens cancel Saturday's open practice at M&T Bank Stadium

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USA Today Sports

Ravens cancel Saturday's open practice at M&T Bank Stadium

The Baltimore Ravens cancelled Saturday night's free open practice at M&T Bank Stadium due to a forecast that calls for heavy rain and inclement weather.

There is no official word from the team on whether this practice will be resheduled, but it seems like Sunday may be an option, even though there's rain in the forecast then too.

Ravens fans who were looking to see first-round draft pick and potential future starting quarterback Lamar Jackson will have to wait for another day. His presence at training camp, an inevitable competition with the incumbent, Joe Flacco, and potential two-quarterback packages involving both of them are set to be some of the biggest storylines of Ravens camp this summer.

As a Heisman Trophy winner, Jackson was one of the most dynamic players in college football during his time at Louisville. If he can replicate that kind of performance in the NFL, he will be at plenty more training camp sessions for Ravens fans to watch.

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After breakout 2017 season, Ravens running back Alex Collins isn't getting too comfortable

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After breakout 2017 season, Ravens running back Alex Collins isn't getting too comfortable

This time last year, running back Alex Collins wasn't a part of the Baltimore Ravens.

After being released by the Seattle Seahawks at the end of the 2017 preseason, the Ravens placed the 23-year-old on their practice squad, and by Week 2, Collins was already making plays.

As the season progressed, Collins found himself as the Ravens' top running back. He finished 2017 as the team's leading rusher with 973 yards while Javorius "Buck" Allen followed behind him with 591 yards.

If the 2018 NFL season began today, Collins would likely be the Ravens' starter, which is quite ironic considering the fate of his 2017 preseason.

"I always go back to where I started and where I am now, and I use that as my motivation," Collins said after Thursday's training camp practice.

"No matter the day, no matter how tired I am, I think to myself, at this time last year, I didn’t know my position, where I was, where I’d end up. So just having that security behind it is definitely my motivation to keep it this way and keep pushing forward and keep trying to get better instead of being complacent.”

Over the course of 15 games, Collins proved he had the strength and speed to make an impact on the team after Danny Woodhead suffered a hamstring injury on the first drive of the Ravens' Week 1 game and Kenneth Dixon sat out the entire season with a torn meniscus. 

While job security is something we all strive for, Collins isn't getting too comfortable with the hierarchy. 

“I don’t want to say necessarily ‘comfortable,’ because when I use that word, it makes me feel like I’m too relaxed and lackadaisical," Collins said.

"I’m more focused. I don’t want to get comfortable. I don’t want the team or our group to get comfortable, because we just want to get better every day. So, in the position I am, it’s a great feeling, but I’m always pushing myself to be better.”

While Collins has set personal goals for himself – like a 1,000-yard season – he is equally as focused on making the Ravens backfield one of the best groups in the National Football League. 

“I expect that," Collins said on being the Ravens' starter.

"I would hope that all the other running backs expect [to be the starter] as well, and that’s what kind of drives our group – when we all know that we have that capability to be the No. 1 guy, and we’re out competing and push each other and try to be the best. No matter who’s out there during the game, you’ll see a productive play out of that person. So, I have that mindset. I want to be the guy. I have that fire in me, and I hope [that is] as well as the other running backs, as I encouraged them as well.”

Collins noted that he's coming into training camp a bit heavier. He added five pounds to his 200-pound frame "just to see how that feels," but is still maintaining the stamina and strength he's always had. 

Collins – who was one of several veterans released from practice early as the team begins to adjust their way into the extended preseason – finished his media availability with a friendly warning to fantasy football owners: "Draft me now before it’s too late, guys."

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