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The Five Plays That Determined The Game: Ravens/Packers

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The Five Plays That Determined The Game: Ravens/Packers

Posted on 15 October 2013 by Glenn Clark

Following every Baltimore Ravens game this season, Ryan Chell and I will take to the airwaves Tuesdays on “The Reality Check” on AM1570 WNST.net with a segment known as “The Five Plays That Determined The Game.”

It’s a simple concept. We’ll select five plays from each game that determined the outcome. These five plays will best represent why the Ravens won or lost each game.

This will be our final analysis of the previous game before switching gears towards the next game on the schedule.

Here are the five plays that determined the Ravens’ 19-17 loss to the Green Bay Packers Sunday at M&T Bank Stadium…

(Note: not all pictures are always of actual play)

Glenn Clark’s Plays…

5. Eddie Lacy 4 yard run on 3rd & 2 (4th quarter)

This “ended” the game, but Ravens would have needed a miracle even if they stopped the run.

4. Sam Koch punts for 37 yards, touchback on 4th & 9 (1st quarter)

An exchange of 17 yards of field position instead of a field goal try? Or going for it? Or taking a penalty?

3. Datone Jones recovers Joe Flacco fumble forced by Nick Perry at Ravens’ 13 (2nd quarter)

Just an absolute disaster that lead to free points.

2. Jermichael Finley 52 yard catch from Aaron Rodgers on 3rd & 3 (4th quarter)

The play that really ended things.

1. Jordy Nelson 64 yard TD catch from Aaron Rodgers (3rd quarter)

In watching film, no play seemed to turn things more dramatically. Ravens had made it one possession again only to fall behind by two TD’s. 

(Continued on Page 2…)

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Ravens-Packers: Five predictions for Sunday

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Ravens-Packers: Five predictions for Sunday

Posted on 12 October 2013 by Luke Jones

(This blog brought to you by Atlantic Remodeling. Visit www.atlanticremodeling.com to learn about their Red Cent Guarantee!)

Appearing to be healthier than they’ve been at any point since the start of the 2013 season, the Ravens welcome arguably their toughest opponent at home as the Green Bay Packers visit M&T Bank Stadium for the first time since 2005.

Eleven Ravens players are listed as questionable for Sunday’s game, but most are expected to play while the Packers have already ruled out five players for Week 6, including starting linebackers Clay Matthews and Brad Jones and No. 3 cornerback Casey Hayward. Other than injured tight end Dennis Pitta, the Ravens could have their full collection of offensive players available, which would be a welcome development for quarterback Joe Flacco.

It’s time to go on the record as the Packers seek their first road victory of the season in quarterback Aaron Rodgers’ first start ever in Baltimore while the Ravens haven’t topped Green Bay since the 2005 season in what was a lopsided 48-3 victory over Brett Favre in a Monday night affair. The Packers lead the all-time series with a 3-1 record and will play in Baltimore for only the second time in the 18-year history of the Ravens.

Here’s what to expect as the Ravens look to improve to 11-0 at home against NFC opponents in the John Harbaugh era …

1. Eugene Monroe and Jacoby Jones will flash upside for the Ravens offense, but inconsistency will again plague that side of the ball. Few would dispute that Monroe provides a clear upgrade over veteran Bryant McKinnie, but expecting him to step into the starting lineup without any growing pains for an offensive line that’s already struggled this season seems like wishful thinking. It will be interesting to see how offensive coordinator Jim Caldwell uses Jones and a full allotment of wide receivers, but the Ravens could fall into the trap of trying to get too many wideouts involved instead of identifying what’s working best. Aside from the Buffalo game, Flacco has done an admirable job of holding up behind a porous offensive line and trying to make plays with few weapons, but the Ravens haven’t been able to put their offensive together for a full 60 minutes against anyone this season and that will continue at least another week.

2. Torrey Smith will become the first Ravens receiver since Qadry Ismail to go over 100 receiving yards for a third straight game. With running back Ray Rice working his way back to 100 percent and not showing the same explosiveness of past years, the third-year wide receiver Smith has become the Ravens’ most dynamic offensive player as he’s recorded at least 85 receiving yards in every game this season. Smith provides matchup problems for the Packers secondary as the Ravens will try to feature speedy options such as Jones or Deonte Thompson on the opposite side of the formation to keep safeties M.D. Jennings and Morgan Burnett honest. As much as experts and fans have pointed to giving the ball to Rice to keep the Packers offense off the field, aggression will be the key if the Ravens offense hopes to score enough points to be in position to win late in the second half and support a defense that will have its hands full.

3. Packers slot receiver Randall Cobb and tight end Jermichael Finley will go over 150 yards combined as the Ravens struggle to defend the middle of the field. The Ravens had no answers for defending Denver slot receiver Wes Welker in Week 1 and Cobb presents a more explosive threat that will be a challenge for nickel cornerback Corey Graham. Lardarius Webb and Jimmy Smith will try to hold their own against Jordy Nelson and James Jones, but the Ravens have often struggled against tight ends this season and Finley is a matchup problem for linebackers and safeties, especially inside the red zone. The Ravens defense has largely been effective this season, but the secondary has given up too many big plays and there are too many weapons in the Green Bay offense to prevent at least a few more from happening on Sunday.

4. Terrell Suggs will set a franchise record with a sack in a sixth consecutive game, but Green Bay quarterback Aaron Rodgers will escape enough pressure to go over the 300-yard passing mark. The rush linebacker has been a one-man wrecking crew this season and will have an opportunity to wreak havoc on Rodgers with rookie left tackle David Bakhtiari protecting the blindside. The Packers allowed 10 sacks in their first three games but protected Rodgers well last week with only one sack given up against the Lions. The Ravens will provide pressure, but Rodgers’ mobility allows him to escape and extend plays as his talented receivers break off routes and lose defenders in coverage. Green Bay ranks fifth in the league in rush offense but likes to run the ball out of spread-out formations, which won’t work consistently against a talented front seven. As a result, the Packers will throw plenty and the Ravens will apply a respectable amount of pressure, but Rodgers will get away just enough to make some big plays against a vulnerable secondary.

5. The Packers win the battle inside the red zone as Baltimore’s 13-game home winning streak against NFC opponents comes to an end in a 27-23 final. The winner of this game will be more efficient inside the 20 on both sides of the ball as the Ravens need to try to hold Green Bay to field goals while converting their trips inside the red zone into touchdowns. Flacco and the offense have a favorable matchup against a banged-up Packers defense, but they haven’t shown consistency all season and that will have to wait at least another week as they adjust to Monroe at left tackle and a full group of wideouts still trying to establish roles in the passing game. Facing the toughest offense since the season-opening debacle in Denver, the Ravens defense will have a respectable showing but isn’t good enough to shut down the Packers entirely. Judging on their entire body of work this season, I just don’t have enough faith in the Ravens offense to score the necessary points and don’t see enough stops from the Baltimore defense, giving a slight edge to the Packers in a close game.

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Ravens’ pass rush faces tall order in slowing Rodgers

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Ravens’ pass rush faces tall order in slowing Rodgers

Posted on 09 October 2013 by Luke Jones

(This blog brought to you by Atlantic Remodeling. Visit www.atlanticremodeling.com to learn about their Red Cent Guarantee!)

OWINGS MILLS, Md. — The Ravens know an enormous challenge awaits when they welcome Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers in his first trip to Baltimore as a starter.

They’re well aware of the accuracy, the strong arm, the quick release, and the ability to extend plays to find a talented group of pass catchers. But unlike other top quarterbacks such as Peyton Manning and Tom Brady the Ravens meet regularly, Rodgers is a signal caller the Ravens have mostly watched from afar aside from a 2009 loss at Lambeau Field in which he threw for 263 yards and three touchdowns in a 27-14 final.

On paper, Rodgers doesn’t scare you with his legs as he’s rushed for just 42 yards in four games, but his ability to extend plays reminds the Ravens of Pittsburgh’s Ben Roethlisberger and it creates a unique challenge for a pass rush with 19 sacks this season, ranking second in the league behind Kansas City. The key is getting to Rodgers — or at least making him uncomfortable — while keeping him in the pocket to prevent a talented trio of wide receivers from breaking off routes and losing defensive backs in coverage like they can when he’s allowed to escape.

“He’s great on the move. He can move to run, but he really moves to throw,” coach John Harbaugh said. “Those guys do a great job of uncovering downfield. They push off. They do all the different tricks of the trade to get open downfield, and they do a good job with it.”

Discipline must accompany the pressure that’s often wreaked havoc on opposing quarterbacks this season as the free-agent additions of linebacker Elvis Dumervil and defensive end Chris Canty coupled with the renaissance of 2011 AP Defensive Player of the Year Terrell Suggs have often masked a vulnerable secondary in a pass defense that ranks 16th in the league. As was the case last Sunday in Miami when Ryan Tannehill completed five passes of 20 or more yards in the Ravens’ 26-23 win, the secondary has too often given up the big play, which doesn’t bode well against Rodgers and the league’s fourth-best passing attack at 312.3 yards per game through the air.

Packers wideouts Jordy Nelson, Randall Cobb, and James Jones each have more than 300 receiving yards through four games, so the Ravens will depends on Suggs and the defensive line to put heat on Rodgers to prevent these targets from getting loose. Though they allowed only one sack against Detroit in Week 5, the Packers have struggled to protect Rodgers with fourth-round rookie left tackle David Bakhtiari — veteran Bryan Bulaga was lost for the year in the preseason — and an offensive line that yielded 10 sacks in their first three games.

The Ravens secondary fully acknowledges how the pass rush has aided the transition of two new starting safeties — including rookie Matt Elam — from a year ago.

“It’s like our best friend right now,” cornerback Jimmy Smith said. “Once we can sic our dogs on them, it’s heaven for defensive backs, because we’re just waiting for the ball to fly out. We’re running with our backs down to the ball, and you hear big cheers that we just got a sack.”

What’s been even more effective for the Ravens’ pass rush and defense in general has been the ability to consistently generate pressure with the front four, which was a constant problem a year ago with a weaker defensive line and a banged-up Suggs for much of the season. According to Pro Football Focus, only four of the Ravens’ 19 sacks this season have come by use of the blitz, leaving more defenders to drop into coverage on many occasions.

Defensive coordinator Dean Pees has effectively used sub packages to not only keep the defensive line fresh but to confuse opponents by lining pass rushers up at various spots over the course of the game.

“Pressure in any kind of way is good,” Suggs said. “You can do it with three-man rushes; you can do it with blitzes. You definitely don’t want an NFL quarterback to have all day.”

Unlike other top quarterbacks such as Manning and Brady who are statuesque in the pocket, Rogers will move away from pressure, making it critical for the defensive line to be disciplined and mindful of the edges in its quest to hit the 2011 league MVP and three-time Pro Bowl selection as much as possible.

The Ravens followed a similar strategy in each of the last two weeks against mobile quarterbacks in Buffalo’s EJ Manuel and Tannehill. However, defenders warn that they can’t let discipline turn into hesitation with the fear of Rodgers using his legs to roll and escape trouble.

“You’ve just got to keep on after him and keep rushing him,” defensive tackle Arthur Jones said. “When you play timid, you open up more lanes to run. If we play our game of football, we’ll take care of it.”

The Ravens’ defensive game has lived and died with their front seven this season, and they’ll have an opportunity to show the disastrous Week 1 performance against Manning and the powerhouse Broncos was more of an aberration than an inability to answer the challenge against a top offense.

Suggs has been the ringleader of the pass rush with seven sacks already, putting him on pace to shatter his career high of 14 collected in his award-winning campaign just two years ago. But like the rest of a defense that currently ranks 14th in yards and points allowed, Suggs isn’t satisfied and sees better days ahead for the group.

Containing Rodgers and an offense that’s averaged over 450 yards and just under 30 points per contest would be the Baltimore defense’s loudest statement yet.

“It’s just five games,” said Suggs of his monster start as well as the Ravens’ potent pass rush. “We have a great expectation for this team. You can’t be satisfied after five games with what you’ve done. You always want to consider your progress. It’s not a big deal. We’re going to continue to work.”

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Ray Rice Advances To Final Eight in Madden Cover Voting

Posted on 04 April 2012 by WNST Staff

April 4, 2012 – Fans have come out in force to support their favorite Madden NFL 13 cover athlete candidates, casting 16 million votes to date. This year’s vote tally has already eclipsed last year’s 13 million votes, with three rounds still to go. Voting continues at ESPN.com/MaddenVote through April 25 when the next Madden NFL 13 cover athlete will be announced on ESPN’s SportsNation at 5 p.m. ET.

ROUND 3 BREAKDOWN OF MADDEN NFL 13 COVER VOTE CAMPAIGN 

§  Cam Newton vs. Larry Fitzgerald
§  Patrick Willis vs. Victor Cruz
§  Aaron Rodgers vs. Ray Rice

§  Calvin Johnson vs. Rob Gronkowski

 

 

Second round voting highlights include:

 

§  Upset of the Week

§      No. 6 seed Calvin Johnson (WR, Detroit Lions) over No. 3 seed Arian Foster (RB, Houston Texans)

 

§  Largest Voting Differential

§      No. 1 seed Cam Newton (QB, Carolina Panthers) over No. 8 seed Antonio Gates (WR, San Diego Chargers)

§      No. 2 seed Rob Gronkowski (TE, New England Patriots) over No. 7 seed Jared Allen (DE, Minnesota Vikings)

§  Closest Matchups

§      No. 5 seed Ray Rice (RB, Baltimore Ravens) over No. 4 seed Drew Brees (QB, New Orleans Saints)

§      No. 4 seed Larry Fitzgerald over No. 5 seed LeSean McCoy

 

Round 3 voting is now open and fans can make their selections exclusively atwww.ESPN.com/MaddenVote to determine which of the eight NFL players advance to the next round of the Madden NFL 13 cover athlete voting campaign. Every Wednesday throughout the campaign, fans can tune in to SportsNation at 5 p.m. ET for analysis and commentary on the competition.

Fans can visit the Madden NFL Facebook page (www.facebook.com/EASPORTSMaddenNFL) orSportsNation page (www.facebook.com/SportsNation) to join discussions surrounding the Cover Vote.  Fans are also encouraged to tweet their Cover Vote picks using the hashtag #MyMaddenCoverVote on Twitter.

To view or download assets* for the Madden NFL 13 cover athlete voting campaign including player screenshots, b-roll, and renders, please visit: http://maddennfl13.newslinevine.com/cover-vote.html 

NOTE – All player assets are taken from Madden NFL 12.

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Rice, Suggs In Running For Madden 13 Cover

Posted on 08 March 2012 by WNST Staff

EA SPORTS AND ESPN’S SPORTSNATION KICK OFF MADDEN NFL 13 COVER ATHLETE FAN VOTE

This Year’s Campaign Expands to 64 Players – With Play-In Round Featuring Two Athletes

From Each NFL Team Represented in Head-to-Head Matchups

March 7, 2012 – EA SPORTS™ and ESPN announced today the return of the award-winning Madden NFL Cover Vote campaign, where fans can cast their vote for the next athlete to grace the cover of one of the highest-selling videogame franchises in North America. Last year, nearly 13 million votes were cast through ESPNSportsNation.com and ESPN mobile in both companies’ most successful cross-platform activation. Tenth-seeded Cleveland Browns running back, Peyton Hillis, trucked through the six week competition all the way to the ultimate end zone – the Madden NFL 12 cover.

This year’s competition will incorporate more athletes and more chances to vote as the field has been expanded to 64 NFL players, putting even more control in the hands of the fans. Beginning today through March 21, fans can visit the SportsNation Facebook page to choose among the 64 candidates in a play-in round (each matchup features two players from the same NFL team) to advance to the official 32-player, seeded tournament.  The winners of the play-in round will be unveiled with the official seeded, 32-player bracket on March 21 on ESPN’s “Madden Cover Vote Special” from 5-6p.m. EST.  To ensure their favorite player advances to the next round, fans are encouraged to vote daily and tweet their picks using #MyMaddenCoverVote on Twitter.  Every Wednesday between March 21 and April 25, fans can tune into SportsNation on ESPN2at 5p.m. EST to check out the latest Madden NFL 13 Cover Vote standings.

In addition to the SportsNation Facebook page, fans will be able to vote in the play-in round via the open Web through widgets embedded on blogs, websites and more.  Each widget features an individual match-up for each of the 32 total teams in the league.  For the cover vote from March 21-April 25, all voting must be cast at ESPN.com/MaddenVote.

The star-studded list of candidates participating in the play-in round features past Super Bowl winners, perennial Pro Bowlers and some of the most popular players in the NFL including Drew Brees, Arian Foster and Rob Gronkowski. The full list of matchups featured in the play-in round are:

AFC

Ravens Terrell Suggs vs. Ray Rice Jets Mark Sanchez vs. Darrelle Revis
Steelers Troy Polamalu vs. Ben Roethlisberger Bills Stevie Johnson vs. Ryan Fitzpatrick
Browns Joe Thomas vs. Joe Haden Dolphins Reggie Bush vs. Brandon Marshall
Bengals Andy Dalton vs. AJ Green Patriots Wes Welker vs. Rob Gronkowski
Texans Arian Foster vs. Andre Johnson Chargers Phillip Rivers vs. Antonio Gates
Colts Dwight Freeney vs. Robert Mathis Broncos Tim Tebow vs. Von Miller
Jaguars Maurice Jones-Drew vs. Blaine Gabbert Chiefs Dwayne Bowe vs. Derrick Johnson
Titans Jake Locker vs. Chris Johnson Raiders Sebastian Janikowski vs. Shane Lechler

NFC

Bears Jay Cutler vs. Matt Forte Rams Chris Long vs. Brandon Lloyd
Lions Calvin Johnson vs. Matt Stafford 49ers Vernon Davis vs. Patrick Willis
Vikings Percy Harvin vs. Jared Allen Seahawks Marshawn Lynch vs. Earl Thomas
Packers Aaron Rodgers vs. Clay Matthews Cardinals Larry Fitzgerald vs. Patrick Peterson
Falcons Matt Ryan vs. Julio Jones Eagles Michael Vick vs. LeSean McCoy
Saints Drew Brees vs. Jimmy Graham Giants Victor Cruz vs. Jason Pierre-Paul
Panthers Cam Newton vs. Steve Smith Cowboys Jason Witten vs. DeMarcus Ware
Buccaneers Josh Freeman vs. LeGarrette Blount Redskins Brian Orakpo vs. Ryan Kerrigan

The Madden NFL 13 cover vote marks the third-consecutive year that EA SPORTS has asked fans to help shape the face of the Madden NFL franchise through a cover athlete voting campaign.  It also marks the second year of its collaboration with ESPN’s SportsNation.

Madden NFL 13 is developed in Orlando, Florida by EA Tiburon.  For more information about Madden NFL 13, please visit: http://www.ea.com/madden-nfl. To download assets pertaining to the Madden NFL 13 please visit http://maddennfl13.newslinevine.com.

All player participation has been facilitated by National Football League Players Incorporated, the licensing and marketing subsidiary of the NFL Players Association.

EA SPORTS™ is one of the leading sports entertainment brands in the world, with top-selling videogame franchises, award-winning interactive technology, global videogame competitions and breakthrough digital experiences. EA SPORTS delivers experiences that ignite the emotions of sport through industry-leading sports simulation videogames, including Madden NFL football, FIFA Soccer, NHL® hockey, NBA basketball, NCAA® Football, Fight Night boxing, EA SPORTS MMA and Tiger Woods PGA TOUR® golf, and EA SPORTS Active.

For more information about EA SPORTS, including news, video, blogs, forums and game apps, please visit www.easports.com to connect, share and compete.

About Electronic Arts

Electronic Arts (NASDAQ:EA) is a global leader in digital interactive entertainment. The Company’s game franchises are offered as both packaged goods products and online services delivered through Internet-connected consoles, personal computers, mobile phones and tablets. EA has more than 100 million registered players and operates in 75 countries.

In fiscal 2011, EA posted GAAP net revenue of $3.6 billion. Headquartered in Redwood City, California, EA is recognized for critically acclaimed, high-quality blockbuster franchises such as The Sims™, Madden NFL, FIFA Soccer, Need for Speed™, Battlefield™, and Mass Effect™. More information about EA is available at http://info.ea.com.

EA SPORTS, EA SPORTS Active, The Sims and Need for Speed are trademarks of Electronic Arts Inc. Mass Effect is a trademark of EA International (Studio and Publishing) Ltd.  Battlefield is a trademark of EA Digital Illusions CE AB.  John Madden, NFL, FIFA, NHL, NBA, NCAA, Tiger Woods, and PGA TOUR are trademarks of their respective owners and used with permission.  Twitter is a registered trademark of Twitter, Inc.  All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners.

Officially Licensed Product of National Football League Players Incorporated.

About SportsNation

SportsNation is a live sports television show born from the Internet, fueled by fan interaction and focused on fun.  The show, which has the youngest and most male audience on the ESPN network, features discussions of the day’s hottest sports topics but also smaller stories that generate buzz on the Web but are overlooked by other shows.  Feeding off the theory that if two heads are better than one, 200,000 heads are better than two, SportsNation engages hundreds of thousands of sports fans across the country via ESPN.com’s SportsNation page (http://espn.go.com/sportsnation/).

About ESPN Games and EA

ESPN’s long-standing relationship with EA produces deep brand integrations into console gaming titles such as EA SPORTS NCAA Football 12 and Fight Night Champion.  Additionally, the relationship in 2011 produced the biggest ESPN poll vote ever for the Madden NFL 12 cover vote, logging nearly 13 million votes, the most ESPN votes ever for a joint collaboration.  The Emmy award-winning EA Virtual Playbook also most recently extended to boxing and golf in 2011.

###

PLAY-IN ROUND VOTING THRU FACEBOOK & OPEN WEB

Thanks for your interest in SportsNation’s Madden NFL 13 Cover Vote.

EA Sports and ESPN’s SportsNation have chosen two players from each NFL team to be included in a social play-in round for the Madden NFL 13 cover.

Starting March 7th on SportsNation’s Facebook page and on voting matchups called ‘sapplets’ or ‘widgets’ embedded across open web (info below), fans will be able to vote on matchups from each NFL team to send one representative into the final bracket of 32 players at ESPN.com/MaddenVote on March 21st.

If you choose to embed one of the 32 individual voting ‘sapplets’, you can use the next page that includes all 32 embed codes for all 32 NFL teams. They post to your site much like a YouTube clip and can increase time spent on your site as well as traffic by generating debate about matchups.

The social Play-in vote launches on Wednesday, March 7th and closes two week later on Wednesday, March 21st. The Facebook tab and voting ‘sapplets’ will be live during those two weeks.

CHEAT SHEET:

WAY TO EMBED:

  • Go to page 2. Find your team.
  • Copy the embed code.
  • Paste the embed code onto your website where you would embed a YouTube clip.
  • The voting platform is ready and interactive on your page!
  • Please Note: do NOT embed on Tumblr and do NOT change the height & width

Canvas

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Rice, Suggs Make Bloomberg List of Most Powerful Athletes

Posted on 25 January 2012 by WNST Staff

New York, NY, January 25, 2012– The New Orleans Saints’ Drew Brees (No. 1), Green Bay Packers’ Aaron Rodgers (No. 2) and New England Patriots’ Tom Brady (No. 3) top the Bloomberg Businessweek/Horrow Sports Ventures 2012 Power 100 ranking of the most powerful professional athletes in the U.S. To determine who the 100 most powerful athletes are on- and off-the-field going into 2012, Bloomberg Businessweek teamed up with Rick Horrow, host of Bloomberg TV “Sportfolio,” and CEO of Horrow Sports Ventures; CSE, a leading integrated marketing agency that created the Power 100 list for the third consecutive year using proprietary methodology; and the Nielsen/E-Poll N-Score.

As the business of sports continues to grow, endorsement contracts increasingly impact players, teams, and the industry. These contracts take into consideration many of the same factors as the Power 100 ranking – performance, name awareness, appeal, influence, trustworthiness and overall popularity, among other things. Social media, for example, played a role in boosting the rankings of such athletes as LeBron James (No. 4) and Shaquille O’Neal (No.7).  The Power 100 rankings are based 50 percent on these on “off-field” measurements, and 50 percent on “on-field” performance using a variety of industry statistics.

The most notable drops this year include injury-plagued Peyton Manning dropping from No. 1 to No. 51 and golfer Phil Mickelson dropping from No. 4 to No. 18. Due to the individual dominance of its top athletes, tennis commands ten percent of the spots on this year’s list, with the top female athlete on the list being American tennis stalwart Serena Williams (No. 25).

In addition, this year’s Power 100 rankings also emphasize the importance of team sports, with the NFL dominating the list with 26 players ranked in the top 100. The National Basketball Association came in second with the most athletes on the Power 100, with 20, followed by MLB baseball (16), tennis (10), golf (8), NASCAR (6), Olympics (4), soccer (4), hockey (3), boxing/MMA (2), and action sports (1).

“This is the third year of the Power 100, and it continues to be a cutting-edge tool to measure the power and value of athletes,” says Horrow, who will devote an entire “Sportfolio” episode to the special report on January 25.  “CSE’s consistent methodology provides the industry’s only analytics to provide integrated on field and off field attributes.”

Top 20:

1-Drew Brees-Football

2-Aaron Rodgers-Football

3-Tom Brady-Football

4-LeBron James-Basketball

5-Rafael Nadal- Tennis

6-Roger Federer-Tennis

7-Shaquille O’Neal-Basketball

8-Shaun White-Action Sports

9-Novak Djokovic-Tennis

10-Calvin Johnson-Football

11-Luke Donald-Golf

12-Tiger Woods-Golf

13-Kobe Bryant-Basketball

14-Dwight Howard-Basketball

15-Eli Manning-Football

16-Dwyane Wade-Basketball

17-Kevin Durant-Basketball

18-Phil Mickelson-Golf

19-Lee Westwood-Golf

20-Troy Polamalu-Football

All NFL players on list:

Rank

Athlete Sport

Pro Team / Hometown

1

Brees, Drew Football

New Orleans Saints

2

Rodgers, Aaron Football

Green Bay Packers

3

Brady, Tom Football

New England Patriots

10

Johnson, Calvin Football

Detroit Lions

15

Manning, Eli Football

New York Giants

20

Polamalu, Troy Football

Pittsburgh Steelers

23

Foster, Arian Football

Houston Texans

27

Peterson, Adrian Football

Minnesota Vikings

36

Turner, Michael Football

Atlanta Falcons

39

Jones-Drew, Maurice Football

Jacksonville Jaguars

41

Fitzgerald, Larry Football

Arizona Cardinals

43

Stafford, Matthew Football

Detroit Lions

44

Rice, Ray Football

Baltimore Ravens

47

Woodson, Charles Football

Green Bay Packers

50

Ryan, Matt Football

Atlanta Falcons

51

Manning, Peyton Football

Indianapolis Colts

57

Willis, Patrick Football

San Francisco 49ers

59

McCoy, LeSean Football

Philadelphia Eagles

61

Allen, Jared Football

Minnesota Vikings

67

Rivers, Philip Football

San Diego Chargers

72

Matthews, Clay Football

Green Bay Packers

77

Gronkowski, Rob Football

New England Patriots

91

Suggs, Terrell Football

Baltimore Ravens

95

Welker, Wes Football

New England Patriots

97

Anderson, James Football

Carolina Panthers

98

Wallace, Mike Football

Pittsburgh Steelers

 

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Suggs To Receive NFL 101 AFC Defensive Player of the Year Award

Posted on 17 January 2012 by WNST Staff

Top Coaches and Players from AFC and NFC Selected in Nationwide Media Balloting as Winners of NFL 101 Awards for 2011 Season

Four Pro Bowl Selections and Two Outstanding Coaches to be Honored at Kansas City’s 42nd Annual Salute to Professional Football

KANSAS CITY, MO (January 17, 2012) – Two quarterbacks who direct the league’s most high-powered offenses will join two of the most formidable defensive players and two coaches who guided their teams to playoff appearances as the 2011 winners of the annual NFL 101 Awards – the nation’s premier awards event dedicated exclusively to professional football.

The 2011 season award winners will be presented with trophies at the 42nd Annual NFL 101 Awards gala in Kansas City Saturday, March 3, 2012, at the Westin Crown Center. The prestigious black-tie awards event was founded in 1969 and has evolved into what many sports insiders consider the finest awards event of its kind. This year’s event is presented by Perfect Output and ECCO Select. 

Green Bay quarterback Aaron Rodgers has been selected as the NFC Offensive Player of the Year after engineering one of the greatest offensive seasons ever recorded in the NFL. A first-time 101 Award winner, Rodgers established the best single-season passer rating in NFL history at 122.5. He passed for 4,643 yards with a 68.3 completion percentage and an incredible 45-6 touchdown-to-interception ratio.  Rodgers led the Packers to an NFL-best 15-1 record and the NFC North Division title. For the second consecutive year and third time in his career, New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady has been selected as the AFC Offensive Player of the Year. Brady led the Patriots to a 13-3 record and the AFC East Division title. He led the conference in passing attempts (611), completions (401), completion percentage (65.6), yards (5,235), touchdowns (39) and passer rating (105.6).

San Francisco 49ers head coach Jim Harbaugh has been named the NFC Coach of the Year in just his first year as an NFL head coach. Harbaugh guided the 49ers to a 13-3 record and the NFC West Division title after inheriting a team that finished 6-10 the previous year. Harbaugh, who was the AFC Offensive Player of the Year in 1995 as quarterback of the Indianapolis Colts, becomes the first person ever to win 101 awards as both a player and coach. Houston Texans head coach Gary Kubiak is the AFC Coach of the Year. Overcoming season-long adversity including the loss of his top two quarterbacks to injuries, Kubiak led his team to a 10-6 regular season record, the AFC South Division championship and the first playoff appearance in Texans franchise history.

Minnesota Vikings defensive end Jared Allen has been selected the NFC Defensive Player of the Year. Allen finished the regular season with a league-leading 22 sacks – one-half sack shy of the NFL single-season sack mark. He is 20th on the NFL’s all-time career sack list. The former Kansas City Chiefs player was selected to the Pro Bowl for the fourth time in his eight seasons. Baltimore Ravens outside linebacker Terrell Suggs is the AFC Defensive Player of the Year. Suggs recorded an AFC-best 14 sacks and forced a team-high seven fumbles. He holds the franchise record for sacks with 81.5. He was selected to the Pro Bowl for the fifth time in nine seasons.

A national media committee, comprised of 101 sportswriters and broadcasters who cover the NFL, selected the winners in each award category in a nationwide vote at the conclusion of the regular season.

In addition to these award winners, the Committee of 101 also selects the Lamar Hunt Award for Professional Football, which was created in 2007 to honor the life and legacy of the founder of the Kansas City Chiefs and given in recognition of visionary leadership that has helped the NFL become the preeminent pro sports league in America. This year’s Lamar Hunt Award for Professional Football award winner will be announced in February.

The awards show hosts for the evening will be NFL Network sportscaster Paul Burmeister and CBS football analyst Rich Gannon, a former NFL Most Valuable Player and two-time 101 Award winner.

Event proceeds this year will be directed to the Truman Medical Center Charitable Foundation through the Chiefs Children’s Fund, a 501(c)3 foundation that distributes funds to various children’s charities throughout the Kansas City area. TMC joined the Chiefs as the official Community Health Partner in September 2010. The Chiefs and TMC are working together to provide wellness education and promote healthier living for the people of Kansas City.  Both TMC and the Chiefs play a vital role in the Kansas City community and this partnership capitalizes on two well-established brands for the common goal of improving the health status of the community in general, and of the citizens in the urban core particularly.

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Timing of media critique puts even brighter spotlight on Flacco to deliver

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Timing of media critique puts even brighter spotlight on Flacco to deliver

Posted on 12 January 2012 by Luke Jones

The words come with a smile as Joe Flacco fires back at his critics.

They draw laughter from the gathered media in Owings Mills while the Ravens quarterback speaks without a tone of confrontation or disdain.

But, as the saying goes, there’s some truth behind every joke. In Flacco’s case, there’s plenty of truth in the response to criticisms levied upon a man whose 44 regular season wins are the most by a quarterback in his first four seasons in NFL history. Supporters find his statements refreshing while others view them as passive-aggressive, but it’s clear Flacco is drawing a line in the sand with his comments.

“We’ve won a lot of games around here,” Flacco said. “This is the second year in a row we’ve won 12 games. I couldn’t care less. At the end of the day, do you see the criticism sometimes and think, ‘What the hell are they talking about?’ Yeah, but who cares?”

For someone unconcerned with what his doubters have to say, he spends plenty of time addressing their barbs. It vaguely reminds you of a scorned man who claims he no longer cares about the woman who broke his heart but takes every possible chance he can to complain about her.

Flacco deserves to be proud of what he’s accomplished in his young career, becoming the first starting quarterback in league history to take his team to the playoffs in each of his first four years. He’s never missed a start, remaining durable and dependable week in and week out.

A generous portion of the criticism thrown his way, from the national or local media, has been unjust and short-sighted. While Flacco isn’t an elite quarterback in the same category of Tom Brady, Drew Brees, or Aaron Rodgers, he is certainly a good one — a very good one, at times.

“You guys want everybody to be Aaron Rodgers and Tom Brady,” Flacco said. “You guys realize, those guys don’t run the ball. If we try to do that, the criticism we’d take around here would be ridiculous. We could win eight games like that and lose one, and you guys would be like, ‘Oh man, what are you guys doing?’

“Hey, this is what you guys said you wanted. ‘And you lose one game? Oh my God.’ You guys have to remember that [if] you want an elite quarterback, you have to stop complaining when we go out and throw the ball 60 times a game, because that’s what elite quarterbacks do.”

Ironically, Flacco attempted 40 more passes than Rodgers this season, but his message is clear in spite of the balanced offensive attack the Ravens have discovered in the second half of the season.

He hasn’t backed down from speaking his mind this season, defending his career-high 52 pass attempts in a turnover-laden loss to Seattle in November and questioning the conservative second-half play-calling in the Christmas Eve win over the Cleveland Browns. But the timing of his most recent comments leading up to Sunday’s divisional playoff game against the Houston Texans is puzzling and will place even more scrutiny on the signal caller at the onset of the most important playoff run of his career to date.

Instead of trying to keep the focus — and intense pressure — on the entire team, Flacco may have unintentionally placed himself on an island, with critics ready to pounce at the first sign of peril.

“[Criticism is] all right there in front of you, so who’s kidding who?” said offensive coordinator Cam Cameron, defending his quarterback while offering the only appropriate response. “Yeah, you get a little tired of it, but the bottom line is, ‘Hey, go shut people up.’” But, we have to let our play speak for itself, and he’s poised to do that. Let’s give the guy some credit for throwing it out there, and now, he gets the chance to go out there and do his thing.”

Yes, Flacco will need to come through in what’s easily the most navigable path the Ravens have been presented in their attempts to get to the Super Bowl over the last four years. The Pittsburgh Steelers are no longer standing in the way — in large part due to Flacco’s work in disposing of them twice in the regular season — and the Ravens have already received a much-needed week off before hosting their first playoff game of the John Harbaugh era.

Though he will face a Houston defense ranked second overall in yards allowed, Flacco has already proven capable of making plays against the unit, throwing for over 300 yards in a Week 6 victory over the Texans in Baltimore.

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The Reality Check NFL Playoff Power Rankings

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The Reality Check NFL Playoff Power Rankings

Posted on 12 January 2012 by Glenn Clark

Ryan Chell & I ranked the best head coaches, quarterbacks and defenses left in the postseason, then ranked the teams left in order of likelihood to win Super Bowl XLVI.

It was a fun day Thursday on “The Reality Check” on AM1570 WNST.net. You really should be listening.

Best Head Coaches:

Glenn Clark’s Rankings…

8. Gary Kubiak

7. Jim Harbaugh

6. John Fox

5. John Harbaugh

4. Tom Coughlin

3. Mike McCarthy

2. Sean Payton

1. Bill Belichick

Ryan Chell’s Rankings…

8. Gary Kubiak

7. John Fox

6. Jim Harbaugh

5. John Harbaugh

4. Mike McCarthy

3. Tom Coughlin

2. Sean Payton

1. Bill Belichick

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Odds of Ravens Winning Super Bowl Now at 7/1

Posted on 12 January 2012 by WNST Staff

Courtesy of Bovada, (www.Bovada.lv,  Twitter: @BovadaLV).

2012 NFL Playoffs – Which Conference will win the Super Bowl?      

AFC                  8/5

NFC                  1/2

2012 NFL Playoffs – How many road teams will win this weekend?   

0                      4/1       

1                      6/5

2                      2/1       

3                      10/1     

4                      125/1   

2012 NFL Playoffs – How many road teams will win this weekend?   

Over                  1½ (+160)

Under                1½  (-200)

2012 NFL Playoffs – Will any game go to Overtime this weekend?     

Yes                  3/1       

No                    1/4       

Exact Playoff Results for Each Team

2012 NFL Playoffs – Green Bay Packers Playoff Progress       

Eliminated in NFC Divisional Round                     11/4

Eliminated in NFC Championship Game               3/1

Super Bowl Runner Up                                       3/1

Super Bowl Champion                                        9/5

2012 NFL Playoffs – New England Patriots Playoff Progress    

Eliminated in AFC Divisional Round                     11/2

Eliminated in AFC Championship Game               5/2

Super Bowl Runner Up                                       2/1

Super Bowl Champion                                        11/4

2012 NFL Playoffs – San Francisco 49ers Playoff Progress      

Eliminated in NFC Divisional Round                     1/2

Eliminated in NFC Championship Game               5/2

Super Bowl Runner Up                                       7/1

Super Bowl Champion                                        13/1

2012 NFL Playoffs – Baltimore Ravens Playoff Progress          

Eliminated in AFC Divisional Round                     5/2

Eliminated in AFC Championship Game               5/6

Super Bowl Runner Up                                       15/4

Super Bowl Champion                                        7/1

2012 NFL Playoffs – New Orleans Saints Playoff Progress       

Eliminated in NFC Divisional Round                     5/2

Eliminated in NFC Championship Game               1/1

Super Bowl Runner Up                                       11/2

Super Bowl Champion                                        7/2

2012 NFL Playoffs – Houston Texans Playoff Progress            

Eliminated in AFC Divisional Round                     2/7

Eliminated in AFC Championship Game               7/2

Super Bowl Runner Up                                       15/1

Super Bowl Champion                                        30/1

2012 NFL Playoffs – New York Giants Playoff Progress            

Eliminated in NFC Divisional Round                     2/7

Eliminated in NFC Championship Game               4/1

Super Bowl Runner Up                                       12/1

Super Bowl Champion                                        14/1

2012 NFL Playoffs – Denver Broncos Playoff Progress             

Eliminated in AFC Divisional Round                     1/8

Eliminated in AFC Championship Game               7/1

Super Bowl Runner Up                                       18/1

Super Bowl Champion                                        35/1

Divisonal Playoff Round Stat Leaders

DIVISIONAL PLAYOFF WEEKEND – Who will record the most Passing Yards?

Drew Brees (NO) QB                              2/1

Aaron Rodgers (GB) QB                         5/2

Tom Brady (NE) QB                               9/4

Eli Manning (NYG) QB                           5/1

Joe Flacco (BAL) QB                             10/1

Alex Smith (SF) QB                               15/1

Tim Tebow (DEN) QB                             18/1

T.J. Yates (HOU)                                   18/1

DIVISIONAL PLAYOFF WEEKEND – Who will record the most Rushing Yards?

Ray Rice (BAL) RB                                4/5

Arian Foster (HOU) RB                           5/2

Frank Gore (SF) RB                               7/2

Willis McGahee (DEN) RB                      4/1

DIVISIONAL PLAYOFF WEEKEND – Who will record the most Receiving Yards?        

Wes Welker (NE) WR                            7/2

Marques Colston (NO) WR                     4/1

Rob Gronkowski (NE) TE                        11/2

Hakeem Nicks (NYG) WR                      11/2

Victor Cruz (NYG) WR                           11/2

Jordy Nelson (GB) WR                           7/1

Demaryius Thomas (DEN) WR                7/1

Andre Johnson (HOU) WR                      15/2

Anquan Boldin (BAL) WR                       12/1

Michael Crabtree (SF) WR                      15/1

New Orleans at San Francisco

NO                    -3.5

SF                    +3.5

Over/Under      47.5

Passing Yards – Drew Brees (NO)       

Over/Under                    335½

Total TD Passes – Drew Brees (NO)    

Over                              2½  (-175)

Under                            2½ (+145)

Combined Yards in the game – Darren Sproles (NO)  

Over/Under                    175½

Receiving Yards – Marques Colston (NO)        

Over/Under                    82½

Will Jimmy Graham (NO) score a TD in the game?    

Yes                              -150

No                                +120

Passing Yards – Alex Smith (SF)         

Over/Under                    225½

Rushing Yards – Frank Gore (SF)        

Over/Under                    80½

Receiving Yards – Michael Crabtree (SF)       

Over/Under                    62½

Receiving Yards – Vernon Davis (SF)  

Over/Under                    52½

Will the 49ers allow a Rushing TD in the game?        

Yes                              -175

No                                +145

Who will have more turnovers in the game? 

New Orleans Saints                   EVEN

San Francisco 49ers                  -130

Denver at New England

DEN                  +14

NE                     -14

Over/Under      50.5

Passing Yards – Tim Tebow (DEN)                  

Over/Under                    190½

TD Passes – Tim Tebow (DEN)                        

Over                              1½ (+195)

Under                            1½  (-250)

Interceptions – Tim Tebow (DEN)                    

Over                              ½  (-165)

Under                            ½ (+135)

Rushing Yards – Tim Tebow (DEN)                  

Over/Under                    45½

Rushing Attempts – Tim Tebow (DEN)             

Over/Under                    9½

Completions – Tim Tebow (DEN)                     

Over/Under                    11½

Will Tim Tebow (DEN) score a rushing TD in the game?                    

Yes                              +135    

No                                -165    

Receiving Yards – Demaryius Thomas (DEN)              

Over/Under                    72½

Passing Yards – Tom Brady (NE)                      

Over/Under                    325½

Total TD Passes – Tom Brady (NE)      

Over                              2½  (-150)

Under                            2½ (+120)

Receiving Yards – Wes Welker (NE)                

Over/Under                    90½

Receiving Yards – Rob Gronkowski (NE)                     

Over/Under                    82½

Will Rob Gronkowski (NE) score a TD in the game?   

Yes                  -165

No                    +135

Receiving Yards – Aaron Hernandez (NE)                   

Over/Under                    60½

Will Josh McDaniels and Tim Tebow hug at the end of the game?    

Yes                              EVEN

No                                -140

Houston at Baltimore

HOU                 +9

BAL                   -9

Over/Under      35.5

Total Passing Yards – T.J. Yates (HOU)           

Over/Under                    200½

(HOU vs BAL) – What will T.J. Yates have more of?    

TD Passes                    2/1

Interceptions                  2/1

Tie                                7/5

Total Rushing Yards – Arian Foster (HOU)       

Over/Under                    75½

Will Arian Foster (HOU) score a TD in the game?       

Yes                              -110     

No                                -110     

Total Receiving Yards – Andre Johnson (HOU)           

Over/Under                    70½

Total Passing Yards – Joe Flacco (BAL)          

Over/Under                    235½

Will Ray Rice (BAL) score a TD in the game?

Yes                  -200    

No                    +160    

Total Receiving Yards – Anquan Boldin (BAL)            

Over/Under                    62½

Total Tackles & Assists – Terrell Suggs (BAL)

Over/Under                    4½

Who will record more Rushing Yards in the game?   

Arian Foster (HOU) RB               +25½               

Ray Rice (BAL) RB                    -25½

Who will record more Receiving Yards in the game?

Arian Foster (HOU) RB               +4½     

Ray Rice (BAL) RB                    -4½

Total Rushing Yards Houston in the game      

Over/Under                                100½

New York Giants at Green Bay Packers

NYG                 +9

GB                    -9

Over/Under      53

Total Passing Yards – Eli Manning (NYG)        

Over/Under                    290½

Total TD Passes – Eli Manning (NYG)  

Over                              2  (-150)

Under                            2 (+120)

Total Receiving Yards – Hakeem Nicks (NYG)

Over/Under                    80½

Total Receiving Yards – Victor Cruz (NYG)      

Over/Under                    80½

Total Tackles & Assists – Jason Pierre-Paul (NYG)      

Over/Under                    5½

Total Passing Yards – Aaron Rodgers (GB)     

Over/Under                    310½

Total TD Passes – Aaron Rodgers (GB)           

Over                              2½  (-165)

Under                            2½ (+135)

Total Receiving Yards – Greg Jennings (GB)  

Over/Under                    75½

Will Greg Jennings (GB) score a TD in the game?     

Over                              -110     

Under                            -110     

Total Receiving Yards – Jordy Nelson (GB)     

Over/Under                    70½

Will Jordy Nelson (GB) score a TD in the game?        

Yes                  EVEN

No                    -130

Total Receiving Yards – Jermichael Finley (GB)         

Over/Under                    50½

(NYG vs GB) – Who will record more Rushing Yards in the game?     

New York Giants            -5½

Green Bay Packers        +5½

How many times will Aaron Rodgers be sacked in the game?           

Over/Under                    2½

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