Tag Archive | "detroit"

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Ravens reportedly interview Linehan for offensive coordinator job

Posted on 20 January 2014 by Luke Jones

The Ravens continued their search for their next offensive coordinator by interviewing a new candidate for the job on Monday.

According to The Sun, former Detroit Lions offensive coordinator Scott Linehan was the latest to meet with the Ravens about the vacancy created last week when Jim Caldwell departed to become the head coach of the Lions. Baltimore had already interviewed former Washington Redskins offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan and other candidates, but details of the search have largely remained unknown over the last week.

Linehan served as Detroit’s offensive coordinator for the last five seasons and was fired along with head coach Jim Schwartz following a 7-9 campaign that saw the Lions miss the postseason. Detroit ranked sixth or better in total offense in each of the last three years with an offense that featured quarterback Matthew Stafford and All-Pro wide receiver Calvin Johnson.

The 50-year-old also served as the head coach of St. Louis from 2006 to 2008. Under Linehan, the Rams went 11-25 before he was fired four games into the 2008 season.

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Ravens secondary coach Austin hired as Lions defensive coordinator

Posted on 16 January 2014 by Luke Jones

In a move not unexpected following the hiring of Jim Caldwell as their new head coach, the Detroit Lions have come to an agreement with Ravens secondary coach Teryl Austin to become their new defensive coordinator.

The team officially announced the hiring on Friday.

Austin’s departure is a blow to the defensive coaching staff after he did an impressive job with the development of several young defensive backs including Lardarius Webb, Jimmy Smith, and former Raven Cary Williams. The 48-year-old Austin took over as the Baltimore secondary coach in 2011 when Chuck Pagano was promoted to defensive coordinator.

His roots with Caldwell extend beyond their two years with the Ravens as the pair coached together at Penn State and Wake Forest in the early 1990s.

Head coach John Harbaugh could have an in-house candidate to take Austin’s place in senior defensive assistant Steve Spagnuolo, who spent three years as the defensive backs coach in Philadelphia from 2001 through 2003. Formerly the head coach of the St. Louis Rams who also spent time as a defensive coordinator for both the New York Giants and the New Orleans Saints, Spagnuolo would have to decide whether the secondary coach role would be the right fit for his career path.

The last two secondary coaches under Harbaugh eventually became defensive coordinators with Pagano even advancing a step further to become the head coach of the Indianapolis Colts. Such a track record under Harbaugh might entice Spagnuolo to take the position if offered, even if he desires to once again be a coordinator and head coach in the future.

Harbaugh credited the 54-year-old Spagnuolo as a helpful sounding board on game days as well as an asset to defensive coordinator Dean Pees during the 2013 season.

“I think Dean would tell you something along the lines that he was a big help to Dean as far as — not so much building the package — but studying the opponents and creating a few ideas and some insights that were a little bit different than what we’ve had here in the past and contributed in that way,” Harbaugh said. “I think Dean really came to appreciate Steve’s role in the defensive room there a little bit. The thing about Steve is he’s never really threatening to anybody. He respects all the other coaches. He just tried to help out where he could.”

In addition to continuing the search for their next offensive coordinator, the Ravens must now fill their secondary coach, running backs coach, and — if they choose — quarterbacks coach positions.

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Caldwell officially hired as Lions head coach

Posted on 13 January 2014 by Luke Jones

Ravens offensive coordinator Jim Caldwell accepted the Detroit Lions’ head coaching position Tuesday, officially filling the vacancy left after the Lions fired Jim Schwartz (Mount St. Joe) at the conclusion of the 2013 regular season.

After San Diego Chargers offensive coordinator Ken Whisenhunt agreed to become the head coach of the Tennessee Titans earlier in the day, the Lions reportedly turned their attention to Caldwell, who interviewed for their vacancy earlier this month. He also interviewed for head coach openings with Washington and Tennessee, positions that have since been filled.

The former Indianapolis Colts head coach received much praise for the job he did with the Baltimore offense in helping the Ravens win Super Bowl XLVII after being promoted from quarterbacks coach to offensive coordinator on Dec. 10, 2012. However, his offense struggled mightily in 2013 as the Ravens finished 29th in total yards and 25th in points scored while also setting franchise lows in rushing yards and yards per carry.

Some had called for a change at offensive coordinator after the Ravens’ immense struggles on that side of the ball, but Caldwell’s track record in Indianapolis as well as his work late in the 2012 season make him a viable candidate for another head coaching opportunity. The Ravens were mum on Caldwell’s status for the 2014 season to avoid compromising his chances to obtain a head coach position.

It remains to be seen who among the Ravens’ assistant coaches might be joining Caldwell in Detroit, but secondary coach Teryl Austin is expected to become the Lions’ new defensive coordinator. Other names rumored to potentially join Caldwell on the Lions staff are former running backs coach Wilbert Montgomery and offensive line coach Andy Moeller, whose future remains in limbo after last week’s announcement that run-game coordinator Juan Castillo would remain with the Ravens under Moeller’s title of offensive line coach.

The most logical in-house candidate to replace Caldwell as offensive coordinator would be wide receivers coach Jim Hostler, who served as San Francisco’s offensive coordinator in 2007. However, the Ravens are likely to seriously explore options outside the organization to jump-start an offense expected to receive a significant facelift this offseason.

Preliminary names that could be considered for the position include former Browns head coach Rob Chudzinski, Browns offensive coordinator Norv Turner, and former Vikings head coach Brad Childress.

 

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Caldwell to complete another head-coaching interview with Tennessee

Posted on 06 January 2014 by Luke Jones

Ravens offensive coordinator Jim Caldwell continues to receive interest as a potential NFL head coach and will interview with the Tennessee Titans later this week.

After completing interviews with the Detroit Lions and Washington Redskins in recent days, Caldwell will reportedly meet with the Titans about their open position after they fired Mike Munchak on Saturday.

Caldwell spent three years as the head coach of the Indianapolis Colts and led them to Super Bowl XLIV before joining the Ravens as quarterbacks coach in 2012. He received much praise for the job he did with the Baltimore offense in helping the Ravens win a Super Bowl after being promoted to offensive coordinator on Dec. 10, 2012, but his offense struggled mightily in 2013 as the Ravens finished 29th in total yards and 25th in points scored while also setting franchise lows in rushing yards and yards per carry.

Baltimore parted ways with running backs coach Wilbert Mongtomery last week, and some have wondered whether a change is warranted at offensive coordinator despite teams having interest in Caldwell for their vacant head coaching positions.

 

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Caldwell to interview with Detroit, Washington for head coach vacancies

Posted on 01 January 2014 by Luke Jones

Ravens offensive coordinator Jim Caldwell has never shied away from the goal of once again being an NFL head coach, and it appears he’ll pursue that possibility in the coming days.

Multiple outlets are reporting that Caldwell will interview for the open head coaching jobs with the Detroit Lions and the Washington Redskins. Caldwell spent three years as the head coach of the Indianapolis Colts before being fired at the end of the 2011 season and joining the Ravens as their quarterbacks coach two winters ago.

Caldwell received much praise for the job he did with the Baltimore offense in helping the Ravens win a Super Bowl after being promoted to offensive coordinator on Dec. 10, 2012. However, his offense struggled mightily in 2013 as the Ravens finished 29th in total yards and 25th in points scored while also setting franchise lows in rushing yards and yards per carry.

Head coach John Harbaugh said Tuesday that he doesn’t anticipate any changes to his coaching staff for now but acknowledged the possibility of some assistants exploring opportunities for other jobs.

“There may or may not be some more things happening as the week goes on,” Harbaugh said, “and I’m sure some of our coaches could be a part of that, as far as opportunities go to move up and move on and to pursue career opportunities. We’re proud of that. I think we’ve had a lot of success here. The fact that we’re not pushing deep into the playoffs will probably give some of our coaches some opportunities to do that.”

Some have called for a change at offensive coordinator after the Ravens’ immense struggles on that side of the ball, but Caldwell’s track record in Indianapolis as well as his work late in the 2012 season make him a viable candidate for another head coaching job at some point.

A former Penn State assistant from 1986 to 1992, Caldwell’s name has also been mentioned as a possibility for the Nittany Lions’ head coaching vacancy after Bill O’Brien was hired as the new head man for the Houston Texans on Tuesday.

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The Five Plays That Determined The Game: Ravens/Lions

Posted on 17 December 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’ 18-16 win over the Detroit Lions Monday night at Ford Field…

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

Glenn Clark’s Plays…

5. Louis Delmas called for unnecessary roughness after Joe Flacco pass intended for Marlon Brown incomplete on 3rd down (2nd quarter)

Ended up giving the Ravens three points in a spot where they would have gotten nothing.

4. Daryl Smith sacks Matthew Stafford for five yard loss at Baltimore 47 (1st quarter)

Lions had moved the ball at will on first two drives until this play, game appeared to be headed to a shootout or even a blowout.

3. Matt Elam intercepts Matthew Stafford pass intended for Nate Burleson (4th quarter)

The “ender”.

2. Jacoby Jones 27 yard catch from Joe Flacco on 3rd & 15 (4th quarter)

The significance of this play has somehow been lost.

1. Justin Tucker 61 yard field goal GOOD (4th quarter)

I still don’t believe it.

(Continued on Page 2…)

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Banged-up Flacco declares himself fine after injury scare

Posted on 17 December 2013 by Luke Jones

After taking a shot to his left knee midway through the fourth quarter of the Ravens’ 18-16 win over Detroit, Joe Flacco indicated that his health will not be a major concern moving forward.

The sixth-year quarterback was hit just below the knee by Lions linebacker DeAndre Levy and was examined by team medical personnel on the sideline as backup Tyrod Taylor warmed up, but he did not miss any snaps before orchestrating a 25-yard drive that resulted in the game-winning 61-yard field goal by Justin Tucker with 38 seconds remaining.

National outlets report that Flacco will take it easy for a couple days and be fitted for a knee brace, but he is not expected to miss Sunday’s game against the Patriots.

“It wasn’t really bothering me after the initial hit,” Flacco told reporters in Detroit. “I was probably more scared than anything from just what I felt and also just trying to get a couple of yards out of it. Yeah, it feels fine. It feels strong.”

Flacco expressed displeasure after the game that a penalty wasn’t called for a low hit to the quarterback, but he benefited from a Detroit scoring drive of almost six minutes to regain his bearings before the final offensive drive.

The 2008 first-round pick has never missed a game in his professional career, and it appears there are no major concerns that his status would be in jeopardy for Sunday’s game against the New England Patriots at M&T Bank Stadium. There were no immediate plans for the quarterback to undergo magnetic resonance testing on the left knee.

“That was tough,” head coach John Harbaugh said after the game. “He got a helmet right below the knee, so that will be something that I’m sure [the NFL will] take a look at. He fought through that. Joe Flacco is a tough guy, and he’s a great player in crunch time.”

Flacco went 20-for-38 for 222 yards and completed a 27-yard pass to wide receiver Jacoby Jones on third-and-15 to put the Ravens within Tucker’s range on the final drive.

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Tucker dedicates huge kick to both fantasy and reality teams

Posted on 17 December 2013 by Nestor Aparicio

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Flacco says Ravens “settled” on 3rd down run

Posted on 17 December 2013 by Nestor Aparicio

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Tucker, Ravens tear up book on how to win with wild night in Detroit

Posted on 17 December 2013 by Luke Jones

All the details seemed to be pointing to a valiant effort but a disappointing loss for the Ravens to the Detroit Lions on Monday night.

The offense was 0-for-3 inside the red zone in the first half and could only muster field goals in trying to go toe to toe with the league’s second-ranked offense, leaving the Ravens defense with little breathing room before it finally buckled and gave up a go-ahead fourth-quarter touchdown as it has on more than a few occasions this season.

A last-minute drive orchestrated by a gimpy Joe Flacco moved the Ravens to the Detroit 45 before they inexplicably handed the ball to Ray Rice for a 2-yard gain on third-and-10 and called timeout with 43 seconds remaining. Already 5-for-5 on field goals for the night, Justin Tucker trotted onto the field to attempt a 61-yarder to put the Ravens ahead 18-16.

Really? They couldn’t be serious, right?

John Harbaugh explained after the game that his second-year kicker had told him he would be successful kicking a field goal from that great distance before the Ravens called for the unorthodox run to Rice on third-and-10. The coach would have justifiably faced weeks — and likely an entire offseason — of criticism and second-guessing had Tucker not made the longest kick in franchise history to give the Ravens their fourth consecutive win to improve to 8-6 and retake their current spot as the No. 6 seed in the AFC.

Having faith in your players is one thing, but to willingly attempt the third-longest field goal to win a game in NFL history — and to have made up your mind to do it a play earlier — bordered on lunacy.

Yet it worked.

Of course, much has failed to make sense for these Ravens over the last calendar year except the all-too-familiar outcome of winning when it matters most.

They can thank their 24-year-old kicker who is already entering the previously-unspoken territory of comparisons to Matt Stover, a Ring of Honor member and one of the most beloved players in franchise history. Even the great Stover never had a night like Tucker had Monday in booting a franchise-record six field goals — three from 49 yards or longer — and providing one of the wildest finishes in franchise history.

Tucker has now made 33 straight field goal tries — three shy of Stover’s team record — and his 61-yard field goal to win the game was the longest ever made in a dome and only the 14th of 60 or more yards in NFL history.

The discussion centered around a kicker being a team’s most valuable player is typically absurd when acknowledging how few plays in which he’s actually involved over the course of a game, but it’s impossible to overlook how important Tucker has been for the Ravens as they’ve battled offensive inconsistency all year. Teams never want to settle for field goals in lieu of touchdowns, but a guaranteed three points is wholly valuable with an above-average defense that put forth an exceptional effort against All-Pro wide receiver Calvin Johnson and the high-octane Detroit offense on Monday.

Yes, the Ravens collected another win that could only leave you scratching your head and asking how they did it at the end of the night, but that’s nothing new with Harbaugh’s team.

There is still plenty of work remaining as the Ravens return home to face Tom Brady and New England on Sunday before a potential Week 17 trip to Cincinnati for the AFC North title if they can win their fifth straight in Week 16 against the Patriots.

Baltimore is healthy and appearing poised to make a run once again if they can complete the difficult task of overcoming a 4-6 start to make the postseason for the sixth consecutive year.

But perhaps the best quality the Ravens have is their faith in one another as Harbaugh inexplicably showed in his young kicker to make one of the longest kicks in league history to win a game they desperately needed. It didn’t make sense in the seconds leading up to the try and left you still shaking your head after the ball sailed between the uprights at Ford Field.

The Ravens failed to score a touchdown against the Lions and have gone 4-for-14 inside the red zone over their last four games. The defense once again played well before surrendering a late-game touchdown that threatened to doom them for the third straight week.

And, still, Baltimore has won in each of the last four weeks despite their imperfections and shortcomings.

The Ravens certainly went against the book on how to beat a quality team on the road Monday night as Tucker did his best to earn a key to the city. Even so, the Ravens won’t and shouldn’t apologize for the win, either.

They’ve shown time after time that the unconventional works perfectly for them.

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