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Former Towson RB West participating in NFLPA Rookie Premiere

Posted on 31 May 2014 by WNST Staff

LOS ANGELES, Calif. – Former Towson football running back Terrance West will be among the group of 35 top rookies from the 2014 NFL Draft class who will come together in Los Angeles from May 29-31 to learn the business of football at the 20th annual National Football League Players Association (NFLPA) Rookie Premiere.

Throughout the event, players will gain information to assist in the development of their professional careers. The union’s annual orientation includes seminars focused on financial planning, brand building, group player rights, and social media best practices.

Among the featured guest speakers are former and active NFL players Marshall FaulkWillie McGinestTorry HoltBrandon WilliamsDaunte CulpepperKevin BentleyJamaal CharlesIsrael Idonije and Austin Pettis. Additional speakers include NFLPA Executive Director DeMaurice Smith and NFL Players Inc. (NFLPI) President Keith Gordon.

“NFLPA Rookie Premiere is an unparalleled opportunity for our partners to engage with tomorrow’s most influential athletes today,” said Gordon. “For the first time as professionals, players will learn about the business of football from fellow players, union leadership, and industry experts as they start to build a game plan to succeed beyond their playing careers.”

The three-day event, hosted by NFLPI, the marketing and licensing arm of the NFLPA, will also feature one of the most thrilling moments for any rookie – wearing their official Nike team uniforms for the first time during photo shoots with trading card companies Panini America and Topps at LA Memorial Coliseum.

Other notable rookies joining West at the 2014 NFLPA Rookie Premiere include quarterback Blake Bortles (Central Florida, Jacksonville Jaguars), quarterback Teddy Bridgewater (Louisville, Minnesota Vikings), defensive end Jadeveon Clowney (South Carolina, Houston Texans), wide receiver Marqise Lee (Southern Cal, Jacksonville Jaguars), linebacker Khalil Mack (Buffalo, Oakland Raiders), quarterback Johnny Manziel (Texas A&M, Cleveland Browns) and wide receiver Sammy Watkins (Clemson, Buffalo Bills).

Launched in Los Angeles in 1994, NFLPA Rookie Premiere is unique across professional sports as the event provides business partners with unmatched access to many of the NFL’s most promising and marketable young stars. Each year, NFLPI facilitates approximately 100 individual player service deals for NFLPA Rookie Premiere participants.

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Join us for WNST Purple Roadtrip to Cleveland & Hall of Fame (Sept. 20-21)

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Join us for WNST Purple Roadtrip to Cleveland & Hall of Fame (Sept. 20-21)

Posted on 21 May 2014 by WNST Trips

In what has become our annual pilgrimage to visit our friendly neighbors to the west, WNST once again presents another opportunity to head to Cleveland with a stop at the Pro Football Hall of Fame in Canton, Ohio early in the season on the weekend of Sept. 20-21, Nov. 2, 2014.

Our WNST Purple Roadtrip to Pittsburgh will leave White Marsh Mall area on Saturday, Sept. 20 at 7 a.m. We’ll arrive in Canton at lunchtime and will spend several hours at the Pro Football Hall of Fame. We’ll arrive in Cleveland on Saturday night and spend the evening at the Courtyard by Marriott downtown.

The Sunday game is at 1 p.m. and our Gunther Motorcoach will return from downtown Cleveland about 90 minutes after the game and we expect to arrive back in Baltimore around midnight on Sunday.

TRIP INCLUDES:

Roundtrip Gunther Motorcoach transportation

One upper deck game ticket at Cleveland Stadium for Ravens-Browns

Snack and sandwiches for the ride to be washed down with a limited supply of beer, soda and water

Plenty of DVDs, purple films and trivia for the ride to and from Cleveland

SINGLE: $375

DOUBLE: $325

TRIPLE: $300

QUAD $275

Simply click on ADD TO CART below…

How many in your room?

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Former Towson RB West picked by Browns in round three

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Former Towson RB West picked by Browns in round three

Posted on 10 May 2014 by WNST Staff

NEW YORK, N.Y. – Former Towson running back Terrance West was selected by the Cleveland Browns in the third round of the 2014 National Football League Draft on Friday night.

West was the sixth running back taken in this year’s draft and the 94th overall selection.

West becomes the fifth Towson football player to be drafted and the highest ever selection. Offensive tackle Jermon Bushrod was drafted by the New Orleans Saints in the fourth round at pick No. 125 overall in 2007. Running backs David Meggett (1989) and Tony Vinson (1995) were each chosen in the fifth round and kicker Randy Bielski was chosen in the 12th round in 1980.

West was Cleveland’s fourth pick in the first three rounds. The Browns selected cornerback Justin Gilbert with the eighth overall pick and then traded back into the first round to grab Texas A&M quarterback Johnny Manziel with the 22nd overall pick. Cleveland selected offensive tackle Joel Bitonio with the third pick in the second round (No. 35 overall) and also picked outside linebacker Chris Kirksey from Iowa earlier in the third round.

A three-time All-America running back, West was a consensus All-America first team selection in 2013 when he led all college football players with 2,509 rushing yards and 42 touchdowns.

Honored as the 2013 Colonial Athletic Association Offensive Player of the Year and a finalist for the 2013 Walter Payton Award, West led the Tigers to the NCAA FCS championship game. With a record of 13-3, the Tigers were national runners-up.

With 2,509 rushing yards, West shattered the NCAA FCS single season record of 2,326 yards set by Jamaal Branch of Colgate in 2003. He also broke the NCAA FCS record with 42 touchdowns, eclipsing the record of 39 set by Omar Cuff of Delaware in 2007.

In his three-year career at Towson, West ran for 4,849 yards on 802 carries with 84 touchdowns. His 84 career rushing touchdowns tied the NCAA FCS record set by Adrian Peterson of Georgia Southern from 1998 to 2001.

West, who also caught two touchdown passes in his career, ended his career with 86 total touchdowns scored. He ranks third on the NCAA FCS all-time list of touchdown scorers. Brian Westbrook of Villanova holds the record with 89 touchdowns while Peterson is second with 87 touchdowns.

The winner of the Jerry Rice Award as the top freshman in NCAA FCS in 2011, West earned All-CAA first team honors three times. During his career, West was named as the CAA Offensive Player of the Week seven times.

In 2013, he scored at least one touchdown in all 16 games for the Tigers. He also ran for more than 100 yards 12 times and had four 200-plus-yard games. In the Tigers’ NCAA FCS quarterfinal victory over No. 2 Eastern Illinois, he set an NCAA FCS playoff record by rushing for 354 yards. He also scored five touchdowns against Eastern Illinois.

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Pettine adds Moeller, Montgomery, former Raven Weaver to Browns staff

Posted on 06 February 2014 by WNST Staff

BEREA, Ohio – Cleveland Browns Head Coach Mike Pettine on Wednesday named 11 assistants to his initial coaching staff. Pettine named George DeLeone assistant offensive line coach, Chris DiSanto assistant strength and conditioning coach, Richard Hightower offensive quality control coach, Dowell Loggains quarterbacks coach, Derik Keyes assistant strength and conditioning coach, Mike McDaniel wide receivers coach, Andy Moeller offensive line coach, Wilbert Montgomery running backs coach, Paul Ricci strength and conditioning coach, Tony Tuioti defensive quality control coach and Anthony Weaver defensive line coach.

The Browns coaching staff also includes coordinators Jim O’Neil (defense), Kyle Shanahan (offense) and Chris Tabor (special teams), and assistants Brian Angelichio (tight ends), Bobby Babich (assistant secondary), Chuck Driesbach (linebackers), Brian Fleury (assistant linebackers), Jeff Hafley (secondary) and Shawn Mennenga (assistant special teams).

Assistant offensive line coach George DeLeone

DeLeone is a veteran coach of 41 seasons, including the last three at Connecticut where he served as offensive coordinator from 2011-12 and associate head coach/offensive line in 2013.

He has spent 37 years coaching on the collegiate level and four in the NFL. DeLeone has coached in 12 bowl games, including the Fiesta, Sugar, Gator and Orange bowls. On the professional level, he was the San Diego Chargers offensive line coach (1997) and the tight ends coach for the Miami Dolphins (2008-10).

DeLeone also coached at Southern Connecticut (1970-79), Rutgers (1980-83), Holy Cross (1984), Syracuse (1985-96 and 1998-2003), Mississippi (2005) and Temple (2006-07).

During his 18 seasons at Syracuse, the Orange played in 12 bowl games, posting an 8-3-1 record. While working with the offensive line at Syracuse, five of his players were drafted in the NFL.

The New Haven, Conn., native graduated from Connecticut with a degree in physical education. He also earned a master’s degree in physical education from Southern Connecticut.

Assistant strength and conditioning coach Chris DiSanto

DiSanto first joined the Browns as assistant strength and conditioning coach in 2013.

DiSanto spent the 2012 season in the same position at the University of California. Prior to his time with the Golden Bears, DiSanto served four seasons (2008-11) as assistant strength and conditioning coach with the Oakland Raiders.

After graduating from West Chester (Pa.) University in 2000, DiSanto served as a volunteer strength and conditioning coach for the Philadelphia Eagles for three seasons (2000-02), while also serving as an assistant strength and conditioning coach with the Philadelphia Kixx (Major Indoor Soccer League), the Philadelphia Wings (National Lacrosse League) and at his alma mater. In 2005, DiSanto served as the offensive line and assistant strength and conditioning coach for the University of Pikeville. DiSanto spent 2007 as a strength and conditioning intern with the Minnesota Vikings.

A native of Holland, Pa., DiSanto played four years with multiple teams in Arena Football League 2 as an offensive and defensive lineman. During the 2006 season, DiSanto served as captain for the Spokane Shock and helped the team capture the league championship.

Offensive quality control coach Richard Hightower

Hightower, who spent the past four seasons with the Washington Redskins, owns eight years of coaching experience, including seven in the NFL.

After spending two years (2010-11) as the Redskins’ assistant special teams coach, Hightower acquired additional duties assisting the defensive backs in 2012. During his tenure, he helped linebacker Lorenzo Alexander reach the 2013 Pro Bowl and aided a defensive unit that ranked tied for third in interceptions in 2012.

Prior to Washington, Hightower spent the 2009 season coaching wide receivers at the University of Minnesota, where he guided Eric Decker to first-team All-Big Ten honors. Decker, selected by the Denver Broncos in the third round of the 2010 draft, has registered at least 85 receptions and 1,000 receiving yards in each of his past two NFL seasons.

Hightower launched his coaching career as an assistant with the Houston Texans (2006-07), before being elevated to special teams assistant in 2008.

A native of Houston, Texas, Hightower received a bachelor of arts in marketing at Texas, where he was a three-year letterman.

Quarterbacks coach Dowell Loggains

Loggains (pronounced DAAW-uhl LOGG-ins) spent the past eight years (2006-13) with the Tennessee Titans. He served as the offensive coordinator in 2013 and during the final five games in 2012. Last season, he helped Tennessee to a 3-1 start before an injury to QB Jake Locker.

Loggains was the quarterbacks coach from 2010-12, when he worked with Kerry Collins, Vince Young, Matt Hasselbeck and Locker, a first-round pick in 2011. The previous two seasons (2008-09), Loggains was the quality control coach for the offense. He originally joined Tennessee as a coaching administrative assistant (2006-07).

Prior to the Titans, Loggains spent the 2005 season as a scouting assistant with the Dallas Cowboys. His duties included assisting with opponent film breakdown, self-scouting and statistical analysis to be used in game-plan preparation.

A native of Newport, Ark., Loggains was a four-year letterman as a quarterback at Arkansas, where he appeared in 50 games. He graduated with a bachelor of science and master’s degree in education. Loggains was a two-year starter at quarterback for Abilene Cooper (Texas) High School.

Assistant strength and conditioning coach Derik Keyes

Keyes first joined the Browns as assistant strength and conditioning coach in 2013.

Keyes spent the 2012 season in the same capacity with the Houston Texans. Prior to joining the Texans, Keyes was an assistant strength and conditioning coach at his alma mater, the University of Louisiana-Lafayette, for the 2011 season. He began his coaching career as an assistant strength and conditioning intern in 2009 at Louisiana-Lafayette.

A four-year letterman as a safety at Louisiana-Lafayette, Keyes was named second-team All-Sun Belt Conference as a senior. He earned a bachelor’s degree in public relations/business finance in 2008.

Wide receivers coach Mike McDaniel

McDaniel spent the past three seasons with the Washington Redskins, first as an offensive assistant (2011-12) before serving last season as wide receivers coach.

In 2013, he helped Pierre Garcon lead the NFL and set a franchise record with 113 receptions. His total surpassed Hall of Famer Art Monk’s mark of 106, which stood for 29 years. Garcon also finished eighth in the league with 1,346 receiving yards.

From 2009-10, McDaniel coached the running backs for the UFL’s Sacramento Mountain Lions (originally named the California Redwoods). In 2010, Mountain Lions running back Cory Ross was named UFL Offensive Player of the Year.

McDaniel spent three seasons (2006-08) as an offensive assistant with the Houston Texans. In 2008, WR Andre Johnson led the NFL in receiving yards (1,575) and receptions (115).

McDaniel got his start in coaching as an intern with the Denver Broncos in 2005.

A native of Greeley, Colo., McDaniel was a wide receiver at Yale, where he earned his bachelor’s degree in history.

Offensive line coach Andy Moeller

Moeller spent the past six seasons (2008-13) with the Baltimore Ravens. He was an assistant offensive coach for three years before spending the past three as offensive line coach.

Under Moeller’s guidance, guard Marshal Yanda was selected to the Pro Bowl from 2011-13 and guard Ben Grubbs was named to the Pro Bowl in 2011. In 2012, the Ravens scored a franchise-record 398 points and totaled the second-most total yards (5,640) in team history en route to winning Super Bowl XLVII.

Moeller’s offensive line helped pave the way for running back Ray Rice, who registered more than 1,100 rushing yards and 1,600 scrimmage yards in four consecutive seasons (2009-12).  Rice led the NFL with 2,068 yards from scrimmage in 2011.

Prior to Baltimore, Moeller spent eight seasons at Michigan, where he served as tight ends/offensive tackles coach from 2000-01 and offensive line coach from 2002-07. He tutored two All-Americans, center David Baas (2004) and tackle Jake Long (2006-07), the first-overall pick in the 2008 NFL Draft. Moeller’s offensive line helped block for a 1,000-yard rusher in five of his six seasons as offensive line coach.

Before joining Michigan, he spent six years at Missouri. Moeller served as offensive line coach from 1997-99 after coaching the tight ends, tackles and special teams from 1994-96. He coached Army’s offensive line, inside linebackers and special teams from 1998-93. He began his coaching career as a graduate assistant at Indiana in 1987.

A four-year letterman and two-year starter at linebacker for Michigan, Moeller earned first-team All-Big Ten honors. A native of Ann Arbor, Mich., Moeller earned a bachelor of arts degree in economics and communications.

Running backs coach Wilbert Montgomery

Montgomery spent the past six seasons (2008-13) as the Baltimore Ravens running backs coach. During his time in Baltimore, the Ravens made five playoff appearances, captured two division titles and won Super Bowl XLVII.

He oversaw the development of 2008 second-round pick Ray Rice, who was named to three Pro Bowls (2009, 2011-12) and was named second-team Associated Press All-Pro twice (2009, 2011). Rice rushed for more than 1,100 yards and 1,600 scrimmage yards in four straight seasons (2009-12).  He led the NFL with 2,068 yards from scrimmage in 2011 and was second in the league with 1,364 rushing yards. He also set a team record with 15 total touchdowns. Rice ranked fourth in the NFL with 9,214 scrimmage yards (6,180 rushing and 3,034 receiving) from 2008-13.

Montgomery also helped fullbacks Le’Ron McClain (2008-09) and Vonta Leach (2011-12) to multiple Pro Bowls.

In 2008, Montgomery’s unit ranked fourth in the NFL in rushing yards per game (148.5) and fifth in 2009 (137.5). The Ravens also set a team record with 22 rushing touchdowns in 2009.

Prior to Baltimore, Montgomery spent two seasons (2006-07) as the Detroit Lions running backs coach after spending nine years (1997-2005) with the St. Louis Rams. He coached the Rams running backs from 1997-99 and 2003-05, while serving as tight ends coach from 2000-02.

In St. Louis, Montgomery guided two of the NFL’s top running backs in Marshall Faulk and Steven Jackson. Faulk currently ranks 10th on the NFL’s all-time rushing list, while Jackson is 20th.

During his first season with the Rams (1999), Faulk set an NFL record with 2,429 yards from scrimmage as he joined Roger Craig as the only player to total 1,000-plus rushing and receiving yards in a season. Faulk was named the NFL Offensive Player of the Year as St. Louis led the NFL in total offense (fifth in rushing) and went on to capture Super Bowl XXXIV.

Prior to joining the coaching ranks, Montgomery spent nine seasons (1977-85) in the NFL as a running back. He was a sixth-round pick by Philadelphia and played eight seasons with the Eagles (1977-84). He finished his playing career with Detroit in 1985.

Montgomery was a two-time Pro Bowl honoree (1978-79) and two-time AP All-Pro selection (1978-79). In 1979, he led the NFL in yards from scrimmage with 2,012.

An inaugural inductee of the Eagles’ Honor Roll in 1987, Montgomery holds the Eagles’ franchise record in several categories, including career rushing yards (6,538).

As a four-year starter at Abilene Christian, Montgomery set the NAIA record for career touchdowns with 76. He also set the record for touchdowns by a freshman with 37 in 1973, while leading the Wildcats to the NAIA Division I national championship. Montgomery was inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame in 1986.

Strength and conditioning coach Paul Ricci

Ricci spent the past two seasons (2012-13) as an assistant strength and conditioning coach with the New York Jets. Prior to joining the Jets, he served as the director of basketball performance at Texas Tech for one season (2011-12). Ricci was the director of basketball performance at Maryland from 2008-11.

Ricci spent nine seasons (1999-2008) on the strength and conditioning staff of the Baltimore Ravens, including the staff that helped the team claim a victory in Super Bowl XXXV.

Ricci had a one-year stint on the strength and conditioning staff of the Arizona Cardinals (1996), in addition to spending spring training with the San Diego Padres (1996).

Ricci played offensive line for Penn State. He earned a master’s of education from Goucher College and an undergraduate degree from Temple University.

Defensive quality control coach Tony Tuioti

Tuioti (pronounced TOO-ee-oh-TEE) spent the past six seasons at Hawaii. He served as the team’s linebackers coach (2012-13), defensive tackles coach (2010-11) and director of player personnel (2008-09).

In 2010, the Rainbow Warriors led the nation in takeaways (38). In addition, Tuioti’s defensive tackles registered 22.5 of the team’s 30 sacks.

Prior to Hawaii, Tuioti served as defensive coordinator at Silverado High School in Las Vegas, Nev., where he helped the team to the Southeast Division championship with a 10-1 record. Tuioti was the head coach at Kalaheo High School on O‘ahu in Hawaii from 2003-05. He led the Mustangs to the OIA playoffs for the first time in 10 years and was the youngest varsity head coach in the state.

A four-year letterman at Hawaii, Tuioti was an All-WAC defensive lineman. He is one of two former Rainbow Warriors to win a WAC championship as both a player and coach.

Tuioti earned his bachelor’s degree in sociology from Hawaii. He served as graduate assistant coach from 2000-01, while earning his master’s in educational administration. Tuioti also received a second master’s degree in special education from UNLV.

Defensive line coach Anthony Weaver

Weaver spent last season as the defensive line coach with the Buffalo Bills, where his defensive linemen accounted for 47 of the Bills’ 57 sacks, a franchise record and the second-most in the NFL in 2013. Buffalo was the only team to have three players record double-digit sacks, with DE Mario Williams leading the team and finishing fourth in the NFL with 13. DT Kyle Williams registered a career-high 10.5 and DE Jerry Hughes recorded a career-best 10. DT Marcell Dareus added a career-most 7.5 sacks. All four players were selected to the Pro Bowl.

Prior to Buffalo, Weaver spent the 2012 season as the assistant defensive line coach with the New York Jets. He also spent a season (2011) as the linebackers coach at North Texas after beginning his coaching career as a defensive graduate assistant at Florida in 2010.

As a defensive end, Weaver was a second-round pick by the Baltimore Ravens in 2002 and played seven NFL seasons. He appeared in 103 regular-season games with 98 starts, while spending time with Baltimore (2002-05) and Houston (2006-08). He recorded 260 career tackles, 15.5 sacks, three interceptions, five forced fumbles and five fumble recoveries.

A native of Saratoga Springs, N.Y., Weaver was a four-year starter at Notre Dame and earned All-America honors.

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Former Ravens offensive line coach Moeller reportedly on way to Cleveland

Posted on 01 February 2014 by Luke Jones

After Ravens head coach John Harbaugh appointed Juan Castillo to the title of offensive line coach after the 2013 season, it appeared very likely that Andy Moeller would be moving on from the organization.

According to The Sun, Moeller will become the new offensive line coach of the Cleveland Browns after spending six years with the Ravens — the last three as offensive line coach. Castillo served as the Ravens’ run-game coordinator last year, essentially resulting in a demotion for Moeller as the offensive line dealt with injuries and performed poorly in an 8-8 season.

New Cleveland head coach Mike Pettine worked on the same staff as Moeller in Baltimore during Harbaugh’s first season as the Ravens head coach. Pettine served as a defensive assistant for seven years in Baltimore under Brian Billick and Harbaugh.

Assistant offensive line coach Todd Washington appears likely to remain on the Baltimore staff after turning down the offensive line coach position at USC earlier this winter.

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Deserving or not, Ravens remain firmly in AFC playoff hunt

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Deserving or not, Ravens remain firmly in AFC playoff hunt

Posted on 18 November 2013 by Luke Jones

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

They don’t deserve to be in the postseason and certainly don’t look like a playoff team.

The eyeball test warrants a failing grade.

Too little consistency and too many bad losses will cost them at the end of the season.

They’re simply not good enough.

The following statements have been used over and over in describing the Ravens as they’ve lost four of their last five games to fall to 4-6 on the season and 2 1/2 games behind division-leading Cincinnati in the AFC North.

And those same descriptions can and have been used to describe the seven other teams currently jockeying for the final wild-card spot in the AFC playoff picture. In fact, “plodding” might be a better term to use in describing the race for the No. 6 seed in the conference.

Unless commissioner Roger Goodell elects to eliminate the final spot, a team with an underwhelming résumé through Week 11 will find itself playing in January as the final seed in the single-elimination tournament. The New York Jets and Miami Dolphins hold the slight edge at the moment over the rest of the pack at 5-5, but their flaws are as apparent as any of the six 4-6 teams chasing them.

“What it goes to show you is how close it is, and what a razor-thin margin it is in the National Football League,” coach John Harbaugh said in describing the current playoff picture. “That’s what makes the National Football League great. We would all rather be sitting here talking about being atop the division and chasing a home-field advantage or something like that. And that’s something that we were shooting for. We wanted to be in that position. We haven’t done the things we needed to do to be in that position.”

The frustration is understandable after a 4-6 start, but deeming the Ravens undeserving of the playoffs and writing them off are subjective statements that would be true in most seasons but are made in isolation from the rest of the field through Week 11. While I’m unwilling to say they’re definitively better than any of the other seven teams fighting for the final spot, you won’t convince me that any of those competitors are superior to the Ravens, either.

The truth is the AFC is mired in mediocrity once you look beyond Denver, New England, Indianapolis, Cincinnati, and Kansas City, making it difficult to predict which team — if any — will make a strong run over the final six weeks to sneak in. At this point, 10-6 would virtually guarantee the final playoff spot, but 9-7 has a good shot of being the season-ending target.

As mediocre as the entire field of 5-5 and 4-6 teams has looked, even an 8-8 record — or, gasp, 7-9? — with a favorable tie-breaker arsenal could conceivably be awarded with the No. 6 seed. Whether you elect to embrace that possibility with any level of enthusiasm is your choice.

With a head-to-head tie-breaking win over Miami and a meeting with the Jets this Sunday, the Ravens have an opportunity to gain the upper hand against the two teams they’re currently chasing in the wild-card race. That doesn’t mean they have the advantage over the rest of the field, but their chances appear no worse than any other team — even if you must hold your nose while saying that.

“We are right there. We can do it, and we’re good enough to do it,” Harbaugh said. “We’ve got every tool we need; all we have to do is go get it done. But that’s on us. We believe we have what it takes, but it’s up to us to prove it, and we’ve got to go prove it by winning these games.”

Whether the Ravens can do it remains to be seen, but three straight games at home starting Sunday provides a crucial opportunity to stack wins and ease the pain from their current 1-5 record on the road.

Here’s a look at the rest of the race for the AFC’s No. 6 seed in the current order in which teams stand based on tie-breaking procedures, which I’ll forgo including beyond conference records for now:

6. NEW YORK (5-5)
Conference record: 2-5
Remaining schedule: at Baltimore, Miami, Oakland, at Carolina, Cleveland, at Miami
Case for: Only one game remaining against a team with a winning record, league’s top-ranked run defense
Case against: Struggling rookie quarterback Geno Smith, minus-85 point differential (worst among the eight contenders for No. 6 seed)

7. MIAMI (5-5)
Conference record: 4-3
Remaining schedule: Carolina, at New York Jets, at Pittsburgh, New England, at Buffalo, New York Jets
Case for: One of the NFL’s better pass rushes, potential of young quarterback Ryan Tannehill
Case against: 31st in total offense, fallout from the Jonathan Martin-Richie Incognito saga

8. OAKLAND (4-6)
Conference record: 4-3
Remaining schedule: Tennessee, at Dallas, at New York Jets, Kansas City, at San Diego, Denver
Case for: Fourth-ranked run offense, sixth-ranked run defense
Case against: Unrest at quarterback position, 25th-ranked pass defense

9. TENNESSEE (4-6)
Conference record: 3-4
Remaining schedule: at Oakland, at Indianapolis, at Denver, Arizona, at Jacksonville, Houston
Case for: Seventh-ranked pass defense, fifth in conference in takeaways
Case against: Season-ending injury to quarterback Jake Locker, four remaining road games

10. PITTSBURGH (4-6)
Conference record: 3-4
Remaining schedule: at Cleveland, at Baltimore, Miami, Cincinnati, at Green Bay, Cleveland
Case for: One game remaining against teams currently above .500, veteran quarterback Ben Roethlisberger
Case against: 30th-ranked rush offense, 26th in run defense

11. BALTIMORE (4-6)
Conference record: 4-4
Remaining schedule: New York Jets, Pittsburgh, Minnesota, at Detroit, New England, at Cincinnati
Case for: Expected return of Dennis Pitta, four remaining home games
Case against: 31st in yards per carry and 30th in total offense, three games remaining against teams currently above .500

12. CLEVELAND (4-6)
Conference record: 3-4
Remaining schedule: Pittsburgh, Jacksonville, at New England, Chicago, at New York Jets, at Pittsburgh
Case for: Fifth in total defense, play-making ability of wide receiver Josh Gordon and tight end Jordan Cameron
Case against: 26th-ranked rush offense, 10th in AFC in takeaways

13. SAN DIEGO (4-6)
Conference record: 2-5
Remaining schedule: at Kansas City, Cincinnati, New York Giants, at Denver, Oakland, Kansas City
Case for: Fourth-ranked passing offense, plus-4 point differential (best among the eight No.6 seed contenders)
Case against: 27th in pass defense, four games remaining against teams currently above .500

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Who helped the Jets more Sunday: Ed Reed or the 15-7-0?

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Who helped the Jets more Sunday: Ed Reed or the 15-7-0?

Posted on 18 November 2013 by Glenn Clark

15 positive observations from the weekend of football, seven not so positive observations and we acknowledge a “zero” from outside the world of football. A reminder, there’s never any Ravens game analysis here. We do plenty of that elsewhere. It’s a trip through the weekend of football via videos, GIFs, memes, pictures, links, Tweets and shtick. This isn’t where we do Ravens stuff. You can find plenty of that…like…everywhere else on the site.

The 15-7-0 is happy to congratulate Jimmie Johnson on his 6th NASCAR title. I say that as a fellow six time NASCAR champ myself. What’s that, you don’t believe me? Then prove me wrong. Name ONE other NASCAR champion besides Jimmie Johnson.

That’s what I thought.

15 Positive Observations…

1. The Bengals are running away with the AFC North again. This would probably be a more exciting development in Cincinnati but, you know, history and all.

But don’t try to tell Cincy’s finest they shouldn’t be amped up about a big win!

2. Hey there, Terps football fan. Remember how everyone in the office was bragging about their Holiday vacations last year? Mike in finance went to St. Thomas and Jill in accounts payable went to Barbados while you just sat around and ate fruitcake? Well this year you’re going to be the talk of the water cooler because CONGRATULATIONS, YOU’RE HEADED TO BEAUTIFUL SHREVEPORT, LOUISIANA! (Or Annapolis). So long, suckers!

Could someone check in to see if Randy Edsall is excited about bowl eligibility?

Elsewhere in the ACC, Florida State’s game against Syracuse was not competitive, but there WAS some competition at the game!

3. When Ed Orgeron replaces Charlie Weis at Kansas this offseason, do you think he’ll bring his sword with him? Like to take it around on recruiting trips? “Hi, I’m Ed Orgeron and this is my sword.” Damn that sounds awesome. If you haven’t picked out a wedding gift for me yet, please make it a sword.

Lee Corso kinda hopes the answer is “no”.

Another question is whether or not he’ll bring his own Doctor.

And also, will he bring his Marqise Lee?

Kansas actually won a game Saturday. This guy got to keep a piece of the goalpost everyone else threw in the lake.

4. In the span of seven days and two wins, Ben Roethlisberger went from a declaration that he’s a “Pittsburgher” to being dressed exactly like a Hamburglar.

I like Jim Schwartz. I do not like this call.

Why did the Lions lose? Because this guy showed up to the game wearing THIS.

5. Denver is the best team in the AFC West. In a related story, a bear was seen relieving himself in an area filled mostly with trees.

There were like 16 people that showed up at the game with this exact sign. I was right about everything I said about you, Denver.

Your reaction, Denver mascot?

Also…this is a thing? Although I’m not surprised Andy Reid would care so much about his postgame spreads.

There’s a big game coming up next week and Tom Brady is apparently a Batman movie villain now.

(Continued on Page 2…)

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D&L Window Tinting Morning Reaction Tuesday Top 7 Ravens – Week 9

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D&L Window Tinting Morning Reaction Tuesday Top 7 Ravens – Week 9

Posted on 05 November 2013 by Luke Jones

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

Below are our Tuesday Top 7 Ravens players in the 24-18 loss to the Cleveland Browns in Week 9. We’ll track our rankings throughout the 2013 season using the following point system:

No. 1 – 7 points
No. 2 – 6 points
No. 3 – 5 points
No. 4 – 4 points
No. 5 – 3 points
No. 6 – 2 points
No. 7 – 1 point

You can listen to their full explanation HERE.

Luke Jones’ Top 7 …

7) Torrey Smith
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6) Corey Graham
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5) Terrell Suggs
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4) Arthur Jones
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3) Eugene Monroe
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2) Daryl Smith
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1) Marlon Brown
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Drew Forrester’s Top 7 …

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The Five Plays That Determined The Game: Ravens/Browns

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The Five Plays That Determined The Game: Ravens/Browns

Posted on 05 November 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’ 24-18 loss to the Cleveland Browns Sunday at FirstEnergy Stadium…

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

Glenn Clark’s Plays…

5. Jason Campbell 12 yard run on 3rd & 3 (4th quarter)

The first good opportunity the Ravens had to end the Browns’ final drive.

4. Jabaal Sheard sacks Joe Flacco for 1 yard loss on 3rd & 3 at Baltimore 47 (4th quarter)

This was even worse considering the Ravens had already converted a 4th down on the drive.

3. Davone Bess 1 yard TD catch from Jason Campbell on 4th and goal (1st quarter)

A remarkable catch and a play that set the tone for the game.

2. Davone Bess 3 yard catch from Jason Campbell on 4th and 1 (4th quarter)

The Ravens would have ended up with the ball, plenty of time and great field position.

1. Eric Martin recovers Spencer Lanning punt muffed by Tandon Doss at Ravens 11 (3rd quarter)

Clearly the single biggest turn of the game.

(Continued on Page 2…)

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After post-bye clunker, “What now?” becomes Ravens’ biggest question

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After post-bye clunker, “What now?” becomes Ravens’ biggest question

Posted on 03 November 2013 by Luke Jones

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

Coming off the Week 8 bye was supposed to be a chance for the Ravens to start anew after a rocky 3-4 start to the 2013 season.

With the division-leading Cincinnati Bengals losing on Thursday night and most of the AFC wild-card contenders looking mortal, the Ravens simply needed a win — no matter how it looked — to get back to .500 and begin the second half of the season on a positive note. A week off not only gave players a chance to rest but provided head coach John Harbaugh and his staff the time to make much-needed corrections in all phases of the game.

Instead, the Ravens responded with an ugly 24-18 loss to the Cleveland Browns, snapping an 11-game winning streak over their AFC North foe and digging an even bigger hole in their quest to advance to the playoffs for the sixth consecutive season. Expecting the bye week to provide a much-needed tuneup, the Ravens instead stalled getting out of their driveway as they’re now off to their worst start since the 2005 season.

And the question echoing over and over in the closing seconds as the Browns finished a scoring drive lasting more than six minutes was a frightening one.

What now?

A running game averaging a league-worst 2.8 yards per carry entering Sunday produced only 55 yards on 21 carries with quarterback Joe Flacco accounting for 25 of those on three scrambles. The offensive line was once again dominated at the point of attack and Ray Rice finished with 17 yards on 11 carries, not looking any more explosive or elusive despite claims that he was once again 100 percent.

Though once again plagued with a running game that was a non-factor and suspect pass protection for much of the day, Flacco played poorly through much of the first half, missing several open receivers and throwing a head-scratching interception late in the second quarter. To his credit, the sixth-year signal caller rebounded over the game’s final 30 minutes, but his poor first-half showing was disappointing coming off the bye and was a major factor in the Ravens offense once again getting off to a slow start.

The defense allowed veteran Jason Campbell to throw for 262 yards and three touchdowns and, even worse, wasn’t able to get a stop at a crucial point in the second half for the third straight game — all losses. Dean Pees’ unit hasn’t been the biggest problem this season, but the Ravens defense simply hasn’t been able to come up with a big play when it needs it late in games unlike stellar units of the past that often carried inferior offenses.

Not to be outdone by the first two phases, the special teams were a major problem as well as normally sure-handed punt returner Tandon Doss muffed a punt at his own 11-yard line, setting up the Browns’ third touchdown of the game in the third quarter and putting the Ravens behind 21-10. And punter Sam Koch continued his rough season, failing to pin the Browns inside the 20 on three separate opportunities kicking inside Cleveland territory in a game in which field position loomed large.

Hoping for the light to come on after the bye, the Ravens looked like they did in the first seven games of the season — appearing to be a below-average football team.

How does it get fixed? Can it be fixed this season?

The Ravens are as healthy as they’re going to be until the expected return of Dennis Pitta later this month, but the talented tight end isn’t going to remedy all of the team’s problems. At this rate, the Ravens may not be in a position for Pitta’s return to matter in terms of their playoff hopes for 2013.

General manager Ozzie Newsome and Harbaugh have already trimmed fat on the roster with the jettisoning of veterans Michael Huff, Marcus Spears, and Bryant McKinnie. Many are clamoring for the ax to fall on run-game coordinator Juan Castillo, but there have already been murmurs that his influence has waned since the bye week with offensive line coach Andy Moeller now having a louder voice.

If Castillo were to be fired — a move that would be very difficult to challenge at this point — do the likes of Marshal Yanda and Michael Oher suddenly start winning one-on-one battles that they’ve lost too often this season?

The answers aren’t simple when you have issues all over the place and that’s where the Ravens find themselves as they began the month of November with their third loss in the last four games. There’s a certain amount of understanding that comes with the struggles of unproven players like Gino Gradkowski and veteran newcomers who simply don’t fit, but a number of veterans who have been counted on year in and year out have been even bigger disappointments, which brings greater concern for the future.

Even with the problems along the offensive line, it’s getting more difficult every week to dispute the growing notion that Rice’s best days are behind him. He continues to struggle to break any tackles in the open field and no longer looks like the home-run hitter on which the Ravens relied for years. Rice has three years remaining on his current contract and is scheduled to account for $8.75 million on next year’s cap.

Oher and Yanda have appeared to be shells of their former selves, which might not be as problematic with the former scheduled to become a free agent, but the Pro Bowl right guard has a cap figure of $8.45 million next year and is under contract through the 2015 season.

Top cornerback Lardarius Webb was faked out of his shoes by Browns receiver Davone Bess on a 20-yard touchdown in the second quarter Sunday and has struggled to find his pre-injury form coming back from ACL surgery, but he certainly deserves some benefit of the doubt and should get stronger in the second half of the season. Still, he carries a $10.5 million cap figure in 2014 and is being paid as one of the best cornerbacks in the league.

Having arguably the worst season of his career, Koch carries a $2.8 million cap figure next year, which is a high number for a punter not getting the job done.

And perhaps the most disappointing and concerning of the group of standouts failing to deliver in 2013 is defensive tackle Haloti Ngata, who holds a $16 million cap number next season and no longer looks like the game-wrecker he was before the Ravens signed him to a five-year, $61 million contract in 2011. For the third straight season, nagging injuries are limiting his impact in games.

Regardless of what happens over the final eight games in terms of the Ravens trying to rebound to extend their run of five consecutive playoff appearances to a sixth, Newsome and Harbaugh must be in evaluation mode when it comes to the aforementioned players. Some contracts have bigger cap ramifications than others, but it’s a scary proposition to be forced to reconsider your thinking on players who previously weren’t of any concern — and carry huge price tags.

The debate went on through much of the offseason whether the Ravens were rebuilding or simply reloading after a slew of personnel changes. The result to this point has been a flawed roster that will need to go 6-2 in the second half of the season just to give the Ravens a chance at 9-7.

And barring a drastic turnaround in the final eight games, the Ravens will be forced to start thinking about their offseason much sooner than anyone anticipated.

And they’ll definitely have their work cut out for them.

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