Tag Archive | "Ed Dickson"

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Former Ravens tight end Dickson signs one-year deal with Carolina

Posted on 10 April 2014 by Luke Jones

Former Ravens tight end Ed Dickson signed a one-year deal with the Carolina Panthers on Thursday to officially end his four-year run in Baltimore.

A third-round pick out of Oregon in the 2010 draft, Dickson had some discussions about remaining with the Ravens earlier in the offseason before Baltimore signed veteran tight end Owen Daniels last week. His departure follows a disappointing 2013 season in which he managed just 25 catches for 273 yards and a touchdown despite No. 1 tight end Dennis Pitta missing 12 games with a dislocated hip suffered in training camp.

After spending his rookie season as the understudy to longtime Ravens tight end Todd Heap, Dickson appeared on track to becoming a staple in the Baltimore offense in 2011 when he started 16 games and caught 54 passes for 528 yards and five touchdowns. However, inconsistency catching the football and the emergence of Pitta late in the 2011 season relegated Dickson to mostly blocking duties in his final two years with the Ravens.

Dickson is expected to compete to be the Panthers’ No. 2 tight end behind starter Greg Olsen, who led Carolina with 73 receptions, 816 receiving yards, and six touchdowns in 2013.

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Flacco puts target on back by bashing wildcat offense

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Flacco puts target on back by bashing wildcat offense

Posted on 26 November 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. — What began as a brief statement open for interpretation after Sunday’s win over the New York Jets transformed into a loud declaration from Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco two days later.

He’s no supporter of the wildcat offense. In fact, the sixth-year quarterback and Super Bowl XLVII went as far as saying the gadget offense that includes backup Tyrod Taylor under center and Flacco lined up as a wide receiver makes the Ravens look like amateurs.

“I would say it’s probably not taking too much out of context,” said Flacco when asked to clarify his post-game comments from Sunday. “It is what it is. I don’t like that stuff. I think it makes you look like a high school offense. That’s just my opinion.”

Whether you agree with his outspokenness or not, Flacco firmly placed a target on his back Tuesday similar to the manner in which he proclaimed himself to be the best quarterback in the NFL in the spring of 2012. And it sent a clear message that he wants the Ravens’ fate to be on his shoulders as they approach Thursday’s meeting with the Pittsburgh Steelers and beyond.

Entering Week 13 with a career-low 76.8 passer rating and a career-high 14 interceptions, Flacco hasn’t been at his best this year while dealing with the losses of Anquan Boldin and Dennis Pitta, inconsistent pass protection, and an abysmal running game. In fact, the decision to use Taylor for 12 offensive snaps — five at quarterback and seven at wide receiver — was a bigger indictment of the Ravens’ rushing attack and its expected difficulties against New York’s top-ranked run defense than anything directly related to Flacco.

But the quarterback believes novelties and gimmicks aren’t going to help the Ravens improve enough down the stretch to advance to the playoffs for a sixth consecutive season. Of course, a 4-6 record entering last Sunday’s game made a fair argument for a need to try something different.

The pressure is now on Flacco to put his money where his mouth is in a way not dissimilar from his historic playoff performance last season that not only brought the Ravens their second NFL championship but earned him a lucrative payday.

“I don’t look at it as a slap in the face to me. It is what it is,” Flacco said. “I want as many chances as I can get behind [center]. I just don’t like that stuff in general. Me and Tyrod talk about it. It’s just interesting to me.

“I’m all for us doing things to get better, but we’re not going to be good if we just can’t get good at the basics of what we do 90 percent of the time. We’ve got to get good at those things or we’re not going to be good, no matter what. And I just want to make sure we’re focusing on getting good at those things.”

Flacco’s points are fair as there is plenty of evidence to support the Wildcat attack not being successful beyond a play here or there as Taylor’s 17-yard run provided a brief spark before the backup quarterback ultimately finished with seven yards on four carries. The dozen plays in which Taylor was involved didn’t appear to loosen up the Jets defense very much as the Ravens finished the day averaging 2.2 yards per carry on 31 rushes.

If the Ravens are impressed with Taylor’s speed and athleticism and want to see him involved with the offense, there are other ways to use him at wide receiver and even running back without moving the $120 million quarterback to the wide receiver position where offensive coordinator Jim Caldwell is either risking injury or essentially playing with a man disadvantage before the ball is even snapped.

Whether Flacco’s comments come across as selfish or not are up to the individual, but the Ravens aren’t going to the playoffs by running gadget plays week in and week out. With their many deficiencies on the offensive side of the ball, they will sink or swim on Flacco’s arm.

And his comments Tuesday served as an indirect reminder of that.

“It’s definitely understandable, because Joe’s a great quarterback,” tight end Ed Dickson said. “It might take a little bit away from what he does well. Everybody’s not going to like it, but I can see both sides. I’m going to block if Joe’s out there and I’m going to block if Tyrod’s out there. I’m ready for both of them.”

It remains to be seen how much we’ll see Taylor involved in the offense moving forward as Flacco made it clear that he’s shared his thoughts with the coaching staff and said he doesn’t think we’ll see much of that approach in the future.

If it truly was a one-time shot against a tough run defense, the controversy will be forgotten as early as Thursday night, but a continued use of the gimmick offense could signal a bigger problem of Flacco and the coaching staff not being on the same page as the Ravens approach the final quarter of the season. Players in the locker room took the diplomatic approach when asked about Flacco’s defiant comments, taking what he said in stride.

“It’s not our everyday offense,” running back Ray Rice said. “It’s just something that gives teams a little bit something to prepare for and know that we have it in our arsenal. Look at what Pittsburgh did to us last game.”

Of course, it’s interesting to recall Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger sharing his own thoughts about lining up at wide receiver for a handful of plays in the 19-16 win over the Ravens on Oct. 20, and he didn’t come across as a big fan of it.

Perhaps it’s a simple peek into the psyche of a franchise quarterback and a preference not to disrupt normal rhythm under center. Or, maybe established signal callers with Super Bowl rings are simply willing and able to voice their opinion when they feel something isn’t going to work.

“I’m not doing a single thing,” said Flacco when asked about his responsibilities when he lines up at wide receiver with Taylor at quarterback. “I’m not getting it. I’m not blocking. I’m not doing anything.”

Flacco drew a clear line in the sand on Tuesday by calling out the coaching staff and proclaiming he wasn’t OK with being anything but the man under center. His words were honest and bold, but they leave him wide open for criticism should he falter and the Ravens never find their stride in their quest to advance to the playoffs.

And while he has been far from the offense’s biggest problem during the 2013 season, the Ravens need to see more of what they got from Flacco on Sunday when he threw for 273 yards and turned in his best performance in several weeks.

“I’m the quarterback, I want to be behind the line of scrimmage, and I want to be taking the snaps,” Flacco said. “That’s really the only thing. And I don’t necessarily take it personally either in terms of our offense trying to get better. I just think it makes us look not like an NFL team.”

The Ravens need the 2012 playoff version of Flacco to emerge to avoid any urge to use such “high school” tactics in the offensive game plan and — more importantly — give them their best chance in their five remaining games.

And that assessment is as honest as Flacco was on Tuesday.

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Our Ravens/Jets “Pats on the Ass”

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Our Ravens/Jets “Pats on the Ass”

Posted on 24 November 2013 by Glenn Clark

After every Baltimore Ravens victory, Ryan Chell and I take to the airwaves on “The Creative Deck Designs Postgame Show” on AM1570 WNST.net to offer “Pats on the Ass” to players who have done something to deserve the honor.

We give pats to two defensive players, two offensive players and one “Wild Card”-either another offensive or defensive player, a Special Teams player or a coach. We offer a “Pat on Both Cheeks” to someone who stands out, our version of a “Player of the Game.” Ryan and I select five different players/coaches each.

Here are our “Pats on the Ass” following the Ravens’ 19-3 win over the New York Jets Sunday at M&T Bank Stadium…

Glenn’s Pats…

5. Chris Canty

4. Corey Graham

3. Daryl Smith

2. Joe Flacco

1. Jacoby Jones (Pat on Both Cheeks)

(Continued on Page 2…)

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Our Ravens/Bengals “Pats on the Ass”

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Our Ravens/Bengals “Pats on the Ass”

Posted on 10 November 2013 by Glenn Clark

After every Baltimore Ravens victory, Ryan Chell and I take to the airwaves on “The Creative Deck Designs Postgame Show” on AM1570 WNST.net to offer “Pats on the Ass” to players who have done something to deserve the honor.

We give pats to two defensive players, two offensive players and one “Wild Card”-either another offensive or defensive player, a Special Teams player or a coach. We offer a “Pat on Both Cheeks” to someone who stands out, our version of a “Player of the Game.” Ryan and I select five different players/coaches each.

Here are our “Pats on the Ass” following the Ravens’ 20-17 (OT) win over the Cincinnati Bengals Sunday at M&T Bank Stadium…

Glenn’s Pats…

5. Ed Dickson

 

4. Justin Tucker

3. Torrey Smith

 

2. Elvis Dumervil

1. Lardarius Webb (Pat on Both Cheeks)

 

(Ryan’s Pats on Page 2…)

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Ravens host Goodwill Gridiron Halloween Party Monday

Posted on 28 October 2013 by WNST Staff

RAVENS HOST GOODWILL GRIDIRON HALLOWEEN PARTY

Ravens TE Ed DicksonDT Art JonesT Michael Oher, G Kelechi Osemele and TE Dennis Pitta will serve as hosts for the 14th annual Goodwill Gridiron Halloween Party on Monday (10/28) at Dave & Buster’s (Arundel Mills Mall). They will be joined by approximately 15 Ravens teammates and more than 600 guests at the festive party.

The event features a night of bowling, billiards, video games and light fare, in addition to a silent auction. Guests with unique costumes will take part in a costume contest, judged by Ravens players in attendance.

The event benefits Goodwill Industries of the Chesapeake, Inc., with all proceeds donated toward training and employment programs to help the disabled and underprivileged secure and retain jobs. Last year, Goodwill Industries of the Chesapeake provided services for over 33,000 individuals with disabilities and other barriers to employment, placing 2,464 people into jobs.

Please note that this is a ticketed event. For more information, or to purchase tickets, please visit www.goodwillgridiron.com.

 

Who:                     TE Ed DicksonDT Art JonesT Michael Oher, G Kelechi Osemele and TE Dennis Pitta

Along with additional Ravens Players

 

What:                   14th annual Goodwill Gridiron Halloween Party

 

Where:                Dave & Buster’sArundel Mills Mall

7000 Arundel Mills Circle

Hanover, MD 21076

 

When:                  Monday, Oct. 28, 2013 7 – 11 p.m.

*Costume contest takes place at approximately 8:45 p.m.

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Harbaugh takes responsibility for abandonment of running game

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Harbaugh takes responsibility for abandonment of running game

Posted on 30 September 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. — Head coach John Harbaugh was prepared for questions about the Ravens’ ugly 23-20 loss to Buffalo and the utter disappearance of the running game.

For those mystified over a measly nine rushing attempts — two in the second half — the blame fell squarely on the coach’s shoulders as he addressed the media on Monday. The number of rushes was a record low in the 18-year history of the franchise in Baltimore.

“That’s my call all the way. I just felt like we weren’t running the ball well enough to win the game running the ball,” said Harbaugh, who added that he respected differing opinions about the lack of rushing attempts. “Looking back on it, I feel the same way. After watching the tape, I feel we did exactly the right thing to try to win that game. So, no second-guessing myself on that. That was my decision, and that’s the way we went with it.”

The fact that Harbaugh and the Ravens were so willing to throw in the towel on their running game in favor of throwing 31 straight passes from the latter portion of the second quarter until there was 4:52 remaining in the game speaks volumes about their lack of confidence. The Ravens are averaging just 2.6 yards per carry through four games, and Pro Bowl running back Ray Rice collected just 17 yards on five carries while backup Bernard Pierce gained seven yards on four attempts against the Bills.

The Ravens’ abandonment of the ground game came against a Buffalo defense that entered Sunday ranked 30th in the league against the run and had surrendered 182 rushing yards a week earlier against the Jets.

Baltimore’s inability to run the football has caused many to begin pointing fingers with the most scrutiny falling on second-year center Gino Gradkowski, who was given the task of replacing 15-year veteran Matt Birk this offseason. The 2012 fourth-round pick hasn’t been alone in his struggles as all five members of the line haven’t met expectations, but the responsibility of making the calls at the line of scrimmage has been an adjustment for everyone.

“It’s the difference between Gino and Matt with the calls, and we’re feeling that in there right now,” Harbaugh said. “Gino is a really smart guy, but Matt had been at it for a lot of years. So, that’s something that we’re working through. The rest of the offensive line — we’ve just got to get better. We’ve got to run block better.

“We’ve got to make decisions scheme-wise about what’s best for our guys to do, exactly what schemes those are. We’ve got to come off the ball in the run game a lot better than we’re doing, and we’ve got to be more physical with the inside part of our pass protection and give Joe [Flacco] more depth to the pocket and keep Joe more clean.”

The other individual receiving heat for the line’s poor performance has been new run-game coordinator Juan Castillo, who joined Harbaugh’s staff this offseason and unofficially moved ahead of offensive line coach Andy Moeller in the pecking order. Though he earned a sterling reputation for his work in Philadelphia for over a decade, the Ravens have struggled to pick up the adjustments made to the inside zone blocking schemes.

Many have opined that the Ravens’ personnel up front is better suited to run more of a man-power style, but Harbaugh downplayed the significance of any wrinkles added by Castillo to the team’s offensive line philosophy from previous seasons.

“It’s the same offense. We still run the same plays,” Harbaugh said. “We still have the same philosophy; there are always a few wrinkles. That’s why I brought Juan in, because I was excited about things I knew he was going to bring to the table and bring to our program. Those things are a part of what we’re doing. We’re not the same team we were two months ago, and we’re going to be a different team two months from now.”

No sugarcoating Dickson’s struggles

Tight end Ed Dickson’s struggles to catch the football continued Sunday as an contested pass from quarterback Joe Flacco clanked off the fourth-year player’s hands and into the arms of Bills safety Jim Leonhard in the second quarter.

Asked what the biggest difference was between Dickson now and the tight end who caught 54 passes for 528 yards and five touchdowns during the 2011 season, Harbaugh wasn’t in the mood to mince words.

“That’s a long time ago, so I’m hard-pressed to make that direct comparison,” Harbaugh said. “The stats kind of speak for themselves that you’re alluding to. He’s not the same player right now that he was then, obviously.”

Dickson has dropped six passes this year with the Ravens hoping he would pick up the slack for the injured Dennis Pitta. His 6-foot-4 frame and good speed suggested he has the tools to be a quality NFL tight end, but his time appears to be running out in a free-agent year for the 2010 third-round pick.

“Ed just needs to go catch the ball,” Harbaugh said. “He needs to run fast, get open and catch the football, put it away and get up field. That’s all he needs to do. And if he’s thinking about anything besides that, he’s doing himself a disservice. If he’s lacking confidence for some reason, that’s on him. [If] you’ve got that kind of talent and those kinds of gifts, go play ball.”

Injury report

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Our Ravens/Bills “Slaps to the Head”

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Our Ravens/Bills “Slaps to the Head”

Posted on 29 September 2013 by WNST Staff

After Baltimore Ravens victories, Ryan Chell and I award players who made positive contributions with “Pats on the Ass” during the Creative Deck Designs Postgame Show on AM1570 WNST.net.

The Ravens fell to the Buffalo Bills 23-20 Sunday at Ralph Wilson Stadium, meaning there were no Pats to be awarded.

So instead of offering “Pats on the Ass”, Ryan and I offered “Slaps to the Head” postgame. A slap on the side of the head from a coach tends to come along with them saying something along the lines of “you’ve gotta do better than that.”

Same rules as there were with Pats. Two offensive players, two defensive players, and a Wild Card (Special Teams player, coach, or another Offensive or Defensive player). One player gets “two slaps” (or a slap on both sides of the head), it’s the opposite of a “Player of the Game” honor.” Ryan and I select five different players/coaches after each game.

Here are our five Ravens that have “gotta do better than that.”

Glenn Clark’s Slaps…

5. Ray Rice

4. Terrell Suggs

3. Elvis Dumervil

2. Dallas Clark

1. Ed Dickson (Two slaps)

(Ryan’s slaps on Page 2…)

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Ravens offense looking for instant improvement in friendly surroundings

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Ravens offense looking for instant improvement in friendly surroundings

Posted on 11 September 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. — Every meeting with the Cleveland Browns draws the predictable kind words from the Ravens despite the fact that Baltimore hasn’t lost to the AFC North foe in their last 10 meetings.

The final outcomes haven’t always been convincing or overly impressive, but the Ravens have beaten Cleveland every time they’ve played since coach John Harbaugh and quarterback Joe Flacco arrived on the scene in 2008. The words of flattery aren’t exactly convincing when considering the opposite ends of the spectrum on which these teams have stood over the last five seasons.

“It’s a challenge. It always is in the division,” Harbaugh said. “We are very impressed with what we see on tape, and it’s a very important week for us.”

The Browns may not pose an overwhelming threat after a 23-10 home loss to the Miami Dolphins in Week 1, but the final part of Harbaugh’s statement rings true for the Ravens after a humbling 49-27 loss of their own in Denver. It was the first season-opening defeat of the Harbaugh era and a painful reminder that the euphoria of last year’s Super Bowl title is long gone.

Running back Ray Rice called it a reality check as the Ravens now shift their attention to the home opener and an opportunity to improve their record to 1-1. Much attention has been paid to the Baltimore defense allowing a franchise-record 49 points, but the Ravens offense has been under the microscope since the start of the offseason. The decision to send wide receiver Anquan Boldin to San Francisco in a move that provided $6 million of salary cap space created concern in the passing game that transformed into a full-blown crisis with the long-term hip injury suffered by tight end Dennis Pitta at the start of training camp.

There are still no clear answers to quell those concerns as the Ravens failed to significantly address the wide receiver position after Boldin’s departure, erroneously depending on a young group of holdover receivers that wasn’t up to the task.

Graybeards Brandon Stokley and Dallas Clark and rookie free agent Marlon Brown have emerged — out of attrition and because of the latter’s impressive skill set — as critical pieces in the passing game. And the Week 1 injury to speedy receiver Jacoby Jones puts a dent in the vertical passing game, the one area of the field in which the Ravens could really feel confident in throwing the football.

To make matters worse, the Ravens couldn’t run the football as they averaged just 2.8 yards per carry and were limited to just five carries in the second half after falling behind big in a disastrous third quarter. Many have pondered whether that running game will need to be leaned upon more heavily this season despite having a franchise quarterback to throw the football.

The pressure on the offense to show instant improvement falls on the shoulders of Flacco, who attempted a career-high 62 passes for 362 yards but was picked off twice against a Denver defense lacking Pro Bowl linebacker Von Miller and future Hall of Fame cornerback Champ Bailey. Without Boldin or Pitta on which to depend, life suddenly isn’t as easy for the franchise quarterback.

“That’s the name of the game when you’re a quarterback in this league,” said Flacco, who acknowledged that working with so much new personnel has caused the little things such as timing to take more time to perfect. “You want your organization to be able to [make changes], and you have to prove that you can adapt to whatever is necessary to win football games, and that’s what we’re trying to do.”

The challenge this week will be a talented Cleveland front seven that will only get stronger with the return of first-round linebacker Barkevious Mingo from a bruised lung. He, former Raven Paul Kruger, and Jabaal Sheard form an imposing pass rush on paper, but the Ravens will the expected return of right tackle Michael Oher, who missed the entire second half against Denver with a right ankle injury.

Browns cornerback Joe Haden will draw the assignment of covering No.1 receiver Torrey Smith, who dealt with bracketed coverage against Denver after Jones’ exit with a knee injury. Jones’ absence means Stokley and Brown will need to keep the rest of the secondary honest enough to give the speedy Smith some opportunities in one-on-one matchups against Haden.

Flacco certainly needs more help from Clark, who dropped a sure touchdown pass right before halftime in Week 1 and struggled to gain separation, and fellow tight end Ed Dickson, who couldn’t rein in a number of catchable passes. The quarterback took the high road when asked to address the high number of drops on Wednesday, but the sense of urgency is there to limit unforced errors with the overall talent level of the wide receivers and tight ends coming into question.

“If that’s all we have to worry about is a couple of guys that have very sure hands not coming up with a couple really tough catches, then I think we’re going to be OK,” Flacco said. “Over the long run, we’re going to make a lot of those catches, and it’s going to lend itself to a lot of good things.”

The Ravens hope those good things begin coming to fruition quickly against the Browns, who aren’t nearly the opponent that Denver was but have played them closer than expected at M&T Bank Stadium in each of the last three seasons. Baltimore needs its $120.6 million man to be on his game to elevate the play of a pedestrian group of pass catchers as much as he can — he can’t catch it, too, of course.

Flacco’s 99.0 quarterback rating at home last season only continued his career-long trend of thriving against defenses on his home turf, and it’s the kind of precision the Ravens will need this year to make the offense click. The Ravens have made it a point this week to emphasize that the running game must improve — it’s the truth with two talented running backs at their disposal — but the offense will only go as far as Flacco can take them.

His 92.5 quarterback rating in 10 career games against the Browns and the first contest of the year in Baltimore are the perfect combination for a bounce-back performance. A win is never a guarantee, but the setting doesn’t get much better than this, especially with the backdrop of 71,000 fans stoked to see a Super Bowl championship banner unveiled.

The bad taste from the second-half debacle in Denver will have lingered for 10 days by the time kickoff arrives on Sunday afternoon.

“We’re not going to overreact, but we are going to react and respond where we need to,” Harbaugh said. “The first game is always a good barometer. The old saying is true: It’s never as good or it’s never as bad as what you initially feel.”

And the Ravens hope they’ll be feeling much better about themselves on both sides of the ball by 4:15 p.m. on Sunday.

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Ravens to try out former Giants tight end Ballard on Monday

Posted on 08 September 2013 by Luke Jones

Desperate to improve their production at the tight end position, the Ravens will reportedly try out Jake Ballard.

The former New York Giants tight end was waived by the New England Patriots at the end of the preseason after missing the entire 2012 season due to the torn ACL he suffered in Super Bowl XLVI. Prior to the injury, Ballard had a good 2011 season with the Giants, catching 38 passes for 604 yards and four touchdowns in 14 games.

According to FOX Sports’ Mike Garafolo, Ballard will work out for the Ravens in Owings Mills on Monday.

Ballard struggled in the preseason as the Patriots were hoping he could help fill the void left behind by Aaron Hernandez and the currently-injured Rob Gronkowski.

The Ravens have struggled to find production at the tight end position following the long-term hip injury to starter Dennis Pitta in late July. Fourth-year tight end Ed Dickson struggled to catch the football several times and veteran Dallas Clark dropped a sure touchdown right before halftime in the season-opening 49-27 loss to Denver.

Baltimore also signed veteran Visanthe Shiancoe during training camp but decided to cut him on Aug. 25.

With the Ravens struggling to find viable targets for quarterback Joe Flacco in the passing game, watching Anquan Boldin catch 13 passes for 208 yards and a touchdown had to sting even more.

 

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Our Ravens/Broncos “Slaps to the Head”

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Our Ravens/Broncos “Slaps to the Head”

Posted on 06 September 2013 by Glenn Clark

After Baltimore Ravens victories, Ryan Chell and I award players who made positive contributions with “Pats on the Ass” during the “Nasty Purple Postgame Show” on AM1570 WNST.net.

The Ravens fell to the Denver Broncos 49-27 Thursday night at Sports Authority Field at Mile High, meaning there were no Pats to be awarded.

So instead of offering “Pats on the Ass”, Ryan and I offered “Slaps to the Head” postgame. A slap on the side of the head from a coach tends to come along with them saying something along the lines of “you’ve gotta do better than that.”

Same rules as there were with Pats. Two offensive players, two defensive players, and a Wild Card (Special Teams player, coach, or another Offensive or Defensive player). One player gets “two slaps” (or a slap on both sides of the head), it’s the opposite of a “Player of the Game” honor.” Ryan and I select five different players/coaches after each game.

Here are our five Ravens that have “gotta do better than that.”

Glenn Clark’s Slaps…

5. Rick Wagner

4. Brynden Trawick 

3. Ed Dickson

2. John Harbaugh

1. Jimmy Smith (two slaps)

(Continued on Page 2…)

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