Baltimore Ravens News: Regular Season and Preseason Updates
5/16/13: It does not look like the Ravens are worried about losing their leading receiver from last season. The team traded the resilient but aging Anquan Boldin to San Francisco earlier in the offseason. Baltimore still has Torrey Smith on the team, and just signed Dennis Pitta to a one year deal. The tight end set career highs in catches (61), yards (661), and touchdowns (7). More importantly, he and QB Joe Flacco made a lethal combination throughout the playoffs. Expect to see more of the same this coming season, as Pitta looks to join the elite group of tight ends like Rob Gronkowski, Jimmy Graham, and Vernon Davis.
5/9/13: Steve Spagnuolo has had a rough few years. In 2007, he designed and orchestrated the New York Giants' defense, the only team that year to beat the New England Patriots - in the Super Bowl no less. He parlayed that success into the head coaching job in St. Louis for a few undistinguished years. He was fired following the 2011 campaign after a 2-14 record and very little talent. Last season, he was the defensive coordinator for the Saints. Even with his prior head coaching experience, he was not named as an interim coach. He became the scapegoat there. Now he has joined a senior defensive assistant. Spags is a good guy and defensive coordinator, and deserves better.
5/2/13: Baltimore is known for their defense, and this is a Ravens' draft if there ever was one. The reigning Super Bowl champions only took one offensive player, tackle Richard Wagoner from Wisconsin in the fifth round. Otherwise, they spent picks rebuilding the defense, including safety Matt Elam (Florida) in the first round and inside linebacker Arthur Brown in the second round. Clearly, this is a team that wants to hit people hard. But it is hard to go against GM Ozzie Newsome. He is the best GM in the league and certainly knows exactly what his team needs.
4/25/13: You have to wonder if Ravens general manager Ozzie Newsome has a few more tricks up his sleeve going into the draft and regular season. It is no secret that the Raven lost a lot of their key members from the Super Bowl winning team a few months ago. But they did add a lot of new members, and Newsome will not make the mistake of dishing out big contracts to veterans who are past their prime simply to keep a team together. Expect another successful draft by Newsome, who is simply the best GM in the NFL.
4/18/13: Baltimore has the distinct honor of being the first Super Bowl winning team since 2004 to not host the opening game of the NFL season. Its not Baltimore's fault, there happens to be scheduling conflict with the Baltimore Orioles (over a shared parking area) as well as a religious holiday that week. However, it is doubtful the Ravens would trade a world championship over not hosting the first game of the year. The team will be boasting a new roster, but should still be competitive, even as the Cincinnati Bengals are a division foe on the rise.
4/11/13: Ravens QB Joe Flacco is getting himself into a family fight. Flacco agreed to play NFL legend Johnny Unitas in the upcoming film "Unitas We Stand". Unitas' son from his second marriage is producing the film, but the family from the first marriage, especially John Unitas Jr. is vehemently opposed to the movie. Unitas Jr. and his family own the merchandising rights to the Unitas name. They are threatening law suits if the movie makes any money. A Unitas movie may be interesting and bring the legend to the attention of today's youth who only know about players that have been around for the past few years.
4/4/13: Ravens special teamer Christian Thompson was suspended for the first four games of the upcoming season because he violated the league's substance abuse policy. Thompson played safety in college at South Carolina State. He was a rookie last season and played in seven of the Raven's first eight games before injuring his knee and being placed on the IR. He is eligible to participate in all preseason practices and games, but must sit out the first four games of the regular season unless he can delay that or get it changed through the NFL's appeals process.
3/28/13: Not many people feel sorry for the Ravens for losing much of the core of their vaunted defense this off season after winning the Super Bowl. But the Ravens have done a good job of reloading on talent, signing Marcus Spears to play along side Haluta Ngalta on the defense line. But the big loss was the defection of 11 year veteran and all pro safety Ed Reed to the Houston Texans. Reed took out a full page ad in the Baltimore Newspaper to thank the Ravens fans for their support throughout the years. Reed has been slowed by injuries recently, but should bolster the Texans secondary when he fully heals. The Ravens also signed Elvis Dumervil after the Broncos were forced to cut him because his restructured contract was not received in time.
3/21/13: Baltimore has been railed in the media for not keeping several members of the Super Bowl winning defense with the team. Ray Lewis retired. Ed Reed may go to Houston. Paul Krueger is in Cleveland. And Dannell Eberle is in Miami. But the Ravens learned a decade ago that overpaying to keep the team together only leads to misery and salary cap problems. Additionally, the Joe Flacco signing does not hurt them this year, he will have the same cap figure as in 2012. Baltimore will be just fine - there is a reason Ozzie Newsome is the best executive in the NFL.
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3/14/13: The reigning Super Bowl Champions are showing they cannot keep the entire team together. The Ravens traded wide receiver Anquan Boldin to the San Francisco 49ers for draft picks. Boldin refused to take a pay cut to remain with the team, so was deemed expendable. The Ravens also lost free agents Paul Krueger and Dannell Elerbe. Krueger signed a lucrative deal with the Cleveland Browns, while Ellerbe signed with the Miami Dolphins. Baltimore was able to lure at least one free agent to Charm City. Veteran defensive tackle Chris Canty joined the Ravens on the first day of free agency.
3/7/13: Everyone knew that Joe Flacco was going to get paid following the Super Bowl victory, where he played flawlessly throughout the playoffs. Flacco was even asked about it in the post-game interview following the big win. The Ravens came through for Flacco, rewarding him with a six year, $120 million contract. Flacco got a $29 million signing bonus and $52 million guaranteed. $51 million will be paid in the first two years of the contract. The deal makes Flacco the highest paid player in the NFL, and certainly raises the bar elite quarterbacks when their contracts come due.
2/28/13: The Ravens are sawing goodbye to one of their cornerstones, Matt Birk. Birk announced his retirement after 15 years in the NFL as one of the best offensive linemen in the league. He was drafted in the sixth round out of Harvard by Minnesota. He flourished in the Vikings system for 11 seasons before moving over to Baltimore for the final four years of his career. Birk made six Pro-Bowls in his career, as well as won the Super Bowl a few weeks ago, and was honored last season for his extensive community service work, which promotes additional reading for football players.
2/21/13: No one expects quarterback Joe Flacco to wear anything but a Ravens jersey next season. He is technically a free agent, but Baltimore is expected to retain him either through a new contract or the franchise tag. Flacco and the Ravens did not come to an agreement last summer on an extension. Then Flacco led the team to the Super Bowl. So his value is as high as it ever will be. His agent is meeting with the Ravens at the Combine to discuss a new deal. If that cannot be reached, then Flacco is in line to make $20 million next year under the franchise tag. Either way, it is good to be Joe Flacco these days.
2/14/13: After winning the Super Bowl and bringing the first championship to Baltimore in a decade, the big question facing the Ravens is what to do with Joe Flacco. It is certain that the team will keep him, but just how is up for debate. His rookie contract expired with the ending of the game, and Flacco's agent is seeking a contract that will eclipse both Drew Breese and Peyton Manning (at $20 million and $18 million average per year). The Ravens can franchise tag Flacco, which would cost $14.6 million next season, but that is not the long-term solution that both sides want.
2/7/13: The Baltimore Ravens are the new Super Bowl Champions. The Ravens got off to a very strong start, building up a 21-6 halftime lead. Jacoby Jones returned the opening kickoff of the second half 108 yards, a new NFL record for any game, for a touchdown, giving the Ravens a seemingly insurmountable lead. Then the lights went out. For 35 minutes. Once power was restored, San Francisco stormed back to make it an eight point game. The Ravens were able to score two more field goals and took an intentional safety to seal the game. Joe Flacco continued his historic playoff run and was named the game's MVP.
1/31/13: The Ravens arrived in New Orleans for th e Super Bowl on Sunday, giving them an off day before Media Day on Tuesday. Baltimore is trying to win their first Super Bowl in 12 years, when they humiliated the Kerry Collins and the New York Giants behind a stifling defense. Linebacker Ray Lewis is the lone remnant from that team, and he says that this will be his last game. The biggest difference from that team is that this one actually has an offense. Joe Flacco has best quarterback statistically throughout the playoffs, and Ray Rice is an elite runningback that can keep defenses honest. The line has the Ravens as underdogs by 4.5 points.
1/24/13: The Ravens are heading back to the Super Bowl for the first since 2001. Baltimore won that game against the Giants, and look to do the same against San Francisco on the first Sunday in February. The Ravens scored 21 points in the second half against New England and took control of the AFC Championship Game in Foxborough. Joe Flacco has been the best quarterback in the playoffs this year, improving upon and up and down season. But this will be the final game of Ray Lewis' career, win or lose, as he plans on retiring at season's end.
1/17/13: Baltimore pulled the upset of the weekend, going into Denver and defeating the number one seed Denver Broncos in the Divisional Round. The teams matched scores in each quarter, ending regulation and the first overtime tied at 35 points apiece. The Ravens defense, inspired by the outgoing Ray Lewis, forced two Peyton Manning interceptions and a fumble. Not to be outdone, Joe Flacco threw for 331 yards and 3 TDs in his best postseason game. The second interception was early in the second overtime, and gave Baltimore excellent field position. Justin Tucker then nailed a 47 yard field goal to end this instant classic of a game.
1/10/13: Long time Ravens linebacker and heart of the team, Ray Lewis, announced that he would retire at the end of the season, so the home playoff game against the Colts would be his last at home. Lewis and the Ravens made it memorable by hounding and confusing Andrew Luck and Indy all night en route to an easy 24-9 victory. WR Anquan Boldin set a franchise record with 145 yards receiving and the clinching touchdown. Baltimore now has a chance at revenge. The Ravens hosted the Broncos a few weeks ago and were completely embarrassed. Now the team will head out to Denver to take on the number one seed in the AFC.
1/13/2013: Baltimore finished their regular season on the road against division rival Cincinnati. Since Baltimore lost for of their last five games, the team was out of contention for homefield advantage or a bye week. Instead, the Ravens were pretty much locked into the number four seed. The Bengals pulled out a 23-17 win, but the game was more about staying healthy and preparing for the playoffs than anything else. Baltimore returns home to host upstart Indianapolis in the Wild Card Round the coming Sunday. Indy comes in having just defeated the Houston Texans and denying them a bye week.
12/27/12: The Baltimore Ravens finally righted the ship, using the flatlining New York Giants as their final steppingston in clinching the AFC North title. Joe Flacco and the Ravens' offense emerged from hibernation long enough to rack up over 300 yards in the air and two touchdowns. Both Bernard Pierce and Ray Rice had over 100 yards on the ground, and place kicker Justin Tucker added four feildgoals as the Ravens beat up on the Giants 33-14 at home. With the division wrapped up, the Ravens are likely locked into the fourth seed and will travel to Cincinnati for the last game of the regular season.
12/20/12: The once fearsome Ravens have shrunk in the past several weeks, most recently losing 34-17 at home to the Denver Broncos in a possible playoff preview. The Ravens have now lost three straight games, including two in a row at home for the first time since 2007. New Offensive Coordinator Jim Caldwell did not fare any better than his predecessor, Cam Cameron. The Ravens scored two touchdowns in garbage time making the final score look closer than it actually was. The Ravens are 9-5 and still lead the AFC North, but have to host a desparate New York Giants team this Sunday.
12/13/12: Baltimore made the 35 mile trip to DC to play the Redskins in one of the most anticipated games of the season last Sunday. Baltimore was defeated 31-28 in overtime, meaning the Ravens have lost two in a row. Since both the Bengals and Steelers lost, Baltimore remains in first place in the AFC North, but will need some help to get a bye or homefield advantage in the playoffs. The Ravens offense struggled at times again, and Offensive Coordinator Cam Cameron was fired a day after the loss. The Ravens get a chance at redemption this Sunday when they host the Denver Broncos in a possible AFC playoff preview.
12/6/12: Losing is always disappointing. Losing to your arch rival is heart wrenching. Losing to your arch rival when you have a seven point lead in the fourth quarter is the type of loss that can send a team into a tailspin (see: San Diego against Denver a few weeks ago). Quarterback Joe Flacco only managed 188 yards and one touchdown against the depleted Steelers, and Ray Rice ran for less than 80 yards. Baltimore still leads the AFC North by two games, but must regroup quickly for their next game at Washington, who soundly beat the defending champion New York Giants on Monday.
12/1/2012: Well as you've surely heard by now, the Ravens not only showed up, but they pulled out a 16-13 overtime victory that should not have happened under any circumstances. The Ravens started off slow, facing a 10 point deficit at the halftime point of the game. The Ravens didn't score until early in the third quarter on a Justin Tucker field goal. Things didn't get really interesting until the Ravens clawed to within a field goal on a Dennis Pitta 4 yard touchdown catch.
After a defensive hold the Ravens had the ball in the waning minutes of the game. Certain circumstances led the Ravens to face a 4th and 29, a virtually impossible scenario under any situation. With Joe Flacco lined up in the shotgun, he dumped off a pass to Ray Rice of all things. For any normal player, the play would have been dead the Ravens sent home. However Rice made almost all 11 members of the Charger defense miss on a miracle 30 yard catch. That put the Ravens into position for Justin Tucker to drill a 38 yard field goal as time expired to send the game into overtime. It took almost the entire OT period, but Tucker hit another field for the Ravens to secure the win.
Next up for the 9-2 Ravens is a home game against arch-nemesis Pittsburg, with a chance to almost certainly seal the division.
11/24/2012: The Baltimore Ravens and the Pittsburgh Steelers in engaged in another tooth-and-nail game that came down to the waning seconds. Sounds familiar? You bet. The Ravens visited the hostile territory of Heinz Field looking to solidify their stranglehold on the AFC North. In their way were the Steelers, who have rebounded from a shaky start to the season and had sights dead set on toppling the Ravens and gaining a tie on the division lead.
In the end, the Ravens proved victorious in a hard hitting affair where defense once again ruled the day. The final scored read 13-10 and it was every bit as close it appears. The Steelers, without QB Ben Roethlisberger due to a rib and shoulder injury, had to make do with what they had. Bryon Leftwich was game, as he took big hits the entire game but was still standing by the final whistle. Even better, he showed some surprising legs on a 31 yard gallop into the end zone in the first quarter that gave the Steelers an early lead.
Both teams pretty much struggled to move the ball after that. In a razor-close rivalry like this, it's not surprising that the game's decisive strike came on special teams. Jacoby Jones returned a punt 63 yards for the Raven's only touchdown of the game and gave them the lead in the first quarter. That is a lead the Ravens would not give up for the rest of the game. With the win, the Ravens move a full two games ahead of the Steelers and look destined for a division title.
11/17/2012: Following the beating the Ravens took against the Texans three weeks ago, it was prudent that they right the ship before embarking on a tough stretch of games that would make or break their season. Last week the Browns proved to be a tough challenge on the road, as the Ravens had to rally to escape with a win. This week the Oakland Raiders have come to town with the Ravens needing an impressive performance to demonstrate they are still Super Bowl contenders.
The Ravens certainly proved a few things when they played the Raiders at M&T Bank Stadium in Baltimore. The Ravens racked up a franchise record 55 points against the hapless Raiders. Joe Flacco passed for over 300 yards to go along with three touchdowns. Ray Rice had an off day with only 35 yards on the ground; however he did make up for it with a touchdown.
On defense, the Ravens still struggled, giving up yards by the bundle, but to their credit they took advantage of mishaps by the Raiders to only give up 20 points. Paul Kruger had perhaps a breakout game for the season with two sacks along with a short interception.
The Ravens seemed to pull out all the stops for this game, including a touchdown run by punter Sam Koch, who as holding on the fake field goal. Jacoby Jones put the icing on the cake with a 105 yard touchdown return in the fourth quarter. Now the Ravens are looking at an absolutely pivotal game against the Steelers in week eleven's Sunday game of the week.
11/10/2012: The Ravens beat the Browns in Cleveland 25-15 in a victory last Sunday. In a game that was a bit closer than many would have thought however. But then again this shows how hard it is to win a home game in the AFC North.
The Raven's defense looked slightly improved from their previous performances, holding the Browns to five field goals and no touchdowns. They also managed to pick of Cleveland QB Brandon Weeden two times. The struggles on the ground continued however, as Trent Richardson carved up the much criticized Baltimore front line defense with 105 yards.
On the offensive side of the ball, QB Joe Flacco had a productive day completing 15 of 24 passes with one touchdown. Ray Rice also got a heavier workload than he has in recent weeks, getting 25 carries to rack up 98 yards.
A few days after the win though, the Ravens received their best news of the week. Ray Lewis has rejoined the team in a spectator capacity. He is rehabbing aggressively and has vowed to return. It is still doubtful whether he can complete a miracle recovery, but his exemption on the IR list allows him to. At 6-2 the Ravens are in a good spot on top of the division, but the Steelers are breathing down their necks after a huge win against the Giants. With those two meetings meeting twice in the latter half of the season, expect the division to once again come down to the wire.
9/27/12 ? With the return of the regular NFL referees, the focus was back on the game itself. Joe Flacco threw for 356 yards and a touchdown and rushed for one in the Baltimore Ravens 23-16 victory over the Cleveland Browns. Ravens wide receivers Anquan Boldin caught 9 passes for 131 yards and Torrey Smith caught 6 balls for 97 yards and a touchdown. The Ravens defense also added to the score when cornerback Cary Williams returned an interception from Browns QB Brandon Weeden (25/52 320 yards) 63 yards for a touchdown. The Browns had a chance late in the game to tie it. But, Weeden?s pass to the endzone was too deep and out of the reach of all his receivers.
9/22/12 ? Down 13-0 at the end of the first quarter, things were looking grim for the Baltimore Ravens. But, what happened after that showed the resiliency and toughness of the Ravens and why many have them going to the Super Bowl this year. Ravens wide receiver Torrey Smith led the comeback, catching six balls for 127 yards en route to a 31-30 Baltimore win over the New England Patriots. After throwing an interception early in the game, Baltimore QB Joe Flacco rebounded nicely passing for 382 yards and three touchdowns. Down 30-28, Flacco drove down the field to set-up a 27-yard field goal attempt. Last season, during the AFC Championship game, Flacco drove the Ravens down the field against the Patriots only to have kicker Billy Cundiff miss what would have been the game-tying field goal. Rookie Jason Tucker, the one who took the job away from Cundiff, drove his kick through the uprights to give the Ravens a win.
Linebacker Terrell Suggs may have injured his Achilles playing basketball. Suggs told the team the injury occurred while he was practicing his conditioning tests, but witnesses have said they saw Suggs limp away from a pick up basketball game days before Suggs said he suffered the injury. The Ravens are not concerned where Suggs' Achilles was injured, but how long it will take Suggs to recover. The typical Achilles take nine to twelve months to heal, but Suggs has been adamant telling news sources he will be able return to the field at some point this season.
5/3/12 - Baltimore Ravens linebacker Terrell Suggs tore his Achilles tendon running a conditioning drill in Arizona on Saturday. Suggs informed ESPN on Thursday and believes he can return by the middle of the 2012 season. The 2012 NFL Defensive Player of the year will undergo surgery next week and expects to recover from the injury in four to six months. A study by the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons in 2006 show that even though the general length of time for recovery is four to six months, the average return to playing in an NFL game is 11 months. Still, Suggs believes he can come back in the middle of the season. Suggs had 70 tackles and 14 sacks last year also forcing seven fumbles and two interceptions. He was the best player in a Ravens defense, which was No. 3 overall in the NFL.
The Ravens' first season was in 1996, and just four years later, they were Super Bowl Champions in the 2000 season. The Ravens play at beautiful M&T; Bank Stadium, which offers one of the best open-air football experiences in the league and is just walking distance from the Inner Harbor. The Ravens are known for their great defensive play, led by future Hall of Famers Ray Lewis and Ed Reed. If you are a fan of hard-hitting defense, getting Ravens tickets will give you as good a defensive football experience as you can get in the NFL.
Baltimore Ravens Tickets - The Players
When facing Ed Reed, Ray Lewis and Terrell Suggs on the defensive side of the ball, you know its going to be tough to score. When you have Joe Flacco under center with Anquan Boldin, Ray Rice to get the ball to you know its going to be tough to stop them. This combination of offense and defense makes the Ravens a tough competitor throughout the league. However they may need to make one or two more moves to keep up with the flow of talent that is emerging around the league. Age will catch up to these players. Its time to acquire some young talent to keep fresh legs on the field at all times.
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Opening Day / Baltimore Ravens First Game 2013
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Baltimore Ravens Preseason Beginning 2013
Dec 30, 2012 Baltimore Ravens 17 - 23 Cincinnati Bengals Dec 16, 2012 Denver Broncos 34 - 17 Baltimore Ravens Dec 9, 2012 Baltimore Ravens 28 - 31 Washington Redskins Nov 25, 2012 Baltimore Ravens 16 - 13 San Diego Chargers Nov 18, 2012 Baltimore Ravens 13 - 10 Pittsburgh Steelers Nov 11, 2012 Oakland Raiders 20 - 55 Baltimore Ravens Nov 4, 2012 Baltimore Ravens 25 - 15 Cleveland Browns Oct 21, 2012 Baltimore Ravens 13 - 43 Houston Texans Oct 14, 2012 Dallas Cowboys 29 - 31 Baltimore Ravens Oct 7, 2012 Baltimore Ravens 9 - 6 Kansas City Chiefs Sep 27, 2012 Cleveland Browns 16 - 23 Baltimore Ravens Sep 23, 2012 New England Patriots 30 - 31 Baltimore Ravens Sep 16, 2012 Baltimore Ravens 23 - 24 Philadelphia Eagles Sep 10, 2012 Cincinnati Bengals 13 - 44 Baltimore Ravens
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Aug 8, 2013 Baltimore Ravens vs Tampa Bay Buccaneers Aug 15, 2013 Atlanta Falcons vs Baltimore Ravens Aug 22, 2013 Carolina Panthers vs Baltimore Ravens Aug 29, 2013 Baltimore Ravens vs St. Louis Rams Sep 5, 2013 Baltimore Ravens vs Denver Broncos Sep 15, 2013 Cleveland Browns vs Baltimore Ravens Sep 22, 2013 Houston Texans vs Baltimore Ravens Sep 29, 2013 Baltimore Ravens vs Buffalo Bills Oct 6, 2013 Baltimore Ravens vs Miami Dolphins Oct 13, 2013 Green Bay Packers vs Baltimore Ravens Oct 20, 2013 Baltimore Ravens vs Pittsburgh Steelers Nov 3, 2013 Baltimore Ravens vs Cleveland Browns Nov 10, 2013 Cincinnati Bengals vs Baltimore Ravens Nov 17, 2013 Baltimore Ravens vs Chicago Bears Nov 24, 2013 New York Jets vs Baltimore Ravens Nov 28, 2013 Pittsburgh Steelers vs Baltimore Ravens Dec 8, 2013 Minnesota Vikings vs Baltimore Ravens Dec 16, 2013 Baltimore Ravens vs Detroit Lions Dec 22, 2013 New England Patriots vs Baltimore Ravens Dec 29, 2013 Baltimore Ravens vs Cincinnati Bengals