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Join us on the purple road in Green Bay, Nashville, London and Minnesota with Ravens this fall

Posted on 24 April 2017 by WNST Trips

We started doing these WNST Roadtrips back in October 1996 with a very appropriate first roadie to Indianapolis to see the Colts and Ravens. Now in our 22nd year of taking more than 18,000 Baltimore sports fans on our trips, THIS is the best year we can remember to see the Baltimore Ravens play on the road. The first purple road trip abroad is to London and Wembley Stadium in September. Nashville has been the most popular destination for Ravens fans over two decades. And we only get one chance every eight years to see Lambeau Field and to experience the new stadium in Minnesota.

Together, we’ve created many happy, purple memories that surely will last a lifetime.

How many of you were part of the more than 10,000 Ravens fans that marched to the Superdome in New Orleans as the Ravens went on to grab their second Super Bowl win?

Maybe you were part our playoff trip to to Tennessee as the Ravens took down the Titans en route to the AFC Championship game in 2009.

At WNST.net, we are thrilled to announce the details of ALL of our 2017 Purple Road Trips. This is shaping up to be a very fun and unique road trip season, and we can’t wait to take you on the road with us to create new purple memories.

SPEAKING OF WNST PURPLE ROAD TRIP MEMORIES: If you have ever taken part in one of our road trips – to see the Ravens, Orioles, Caps or Terps on the road– we want to show our appreciation for being on the “early interest” list. Until MAY 3RD, we’re offering you $100 PER PERSON off on any trip purchased. Example: Group of 4 interested in traveling to Nashville? You’ll get $400 off simply for being a loyal WNST customer, fan and friend. YOU are the reason that we’re able to do this 25 years into my sports radio and media journey, and we genuinely appreciate your loyalty! This is important to us and we know how important your vacation and football experience will be this autumn. We want you to come with us! We know you have choices! We’re not only going to have the best price – we’re going to help make your experience better every step of the way!

Our 2017 road trip schedule includes:

A historic trip to London, England to see the Ravens battle with the Jaguars in the first overseas game in the 21 year history of the franchise.

The always fun trip down south to Nashville, Tennessee as the Ravens take on the Titans.

A trip to Minnesota to check out the Vikings’ brand new stadium as well as the Mall of America.

A jaunt to the frozen tundra of Green Bay to see the Ravens take on the Packers at the legendary Lambeau Field.

ALL FOUR ARE LISTED HERE ON THIS LENGTHY BLOG SO YOU HAVE ALL OF THE INFORMATION IN ONE PLACE TO MAKE DECISIONS!!!

Please email us: nasty@wnst.net or peter@wnst.net and we’ll be glad to answer any questions.

LONDON (Sept. 19-25)

Many of you have already signed up for our London trip, but we still have spots available for those of you who are still finalizing your Ravens road trip plans for the upcoming season.  If you are considering traveling to London but have not decided on a specific trip, please read all of our details and compare our pricing with other trips being offered via other outlets. We pride ourselves on providing the most affordable travel options to our fans, and our London trip is specially priced so that everyone has the opportunity to join us.

Our London trip is based on single and double hotel occupancy. Most London rooms aren’t big enough or have beds to accommodate four in a room. We’ll be spending five total nights in London, and you’ll have two options to choose from.

Trip A: Depart Washington Dulles on Tuesday, September 19th at 6:40PM via Delta Airlines, arriving at London’s Heathrow Airport at 7:05AM on Wednesday, September 20th. (London is 5 hours ahead of the United States’ eastern time zone, so this is actually a 7 hour, 25 minute flight).

For the return trip, we’ll be departing London’s Heathrow Airport at 11:15AM on Monday, September 25th, and returning to Dulles Airport at 2:35PM the same day. (This is actually an 8 hour, 20 minute flight given the 5-hour time difference).

Trip B: Depart Washington Dulles on Wednesday, September 20th at 6:40PM via Delta Airlines, arriving at London’s Heathrow Airport at 7:05AM on Tuesday, September 21st. (London is 5 hours ahead of the United States’ eastern time zone, so this is actually a 7 hour, 25 minute flight).

For the return trip, we’ll be departing London’s Heathrow Airport at 11:15AM on Tuesday, September 26th, and returning to Dulles Airport at 2:35PM the same day. (This is actually an 8 hour, 20 minute flight given the 5-hour time difference).

All trips include:

  • Roundtrip air from Dulles to Heathrow
  • A 5-night stay at the Corus Hotel Hyde Park 
  • One entry per person on the London Eye as well as our WNST London Thames River Cruise. (https://www.londoneye.com/)
  • Transportation care for “The Tube” in London (you’ll love this!)
  • Admission to WNST Saturday purple pub pep rally
  • Admission to WNST Sunday purple pre-game tailgate event
  • Upper deck game ticket for Sunday Ravens-Jaguars game

We are also planning some other surprises and memories ­– just like we did in Tampa in 2001 at Whiskey Joe’s and in New Orleans with our 2:52 march to the Superdome!

SINGLE (one in room): $2600 per person via check ($50 more if paying via PayPal with a credit card)

DOUBLE (two in room): $2350 per person via check ($50 more if paying via PayPal with a credit card)

  • Your $100 per person discount from this price will be reflected upon checkout!

How many in your room?

How many in your room?

If you have a larger group, please contact Nestor Aparicio (nasty@wnst.net) or Peter DiLutis (peter@wnst.net) directly with your needs and we will give you personal service.

NASHVILLE (Nov. 3-6)

We’ve had many great road trips to Nashville and we expect more Country fun and Southern hospitality this time around as the Ravens take on Marcus Mariota and the Titans in Tennessee on Sunday, November 5th.

We’ll be offering two pricing options – a premium downtown hotel and a comfortable hotel in a nice suburb for a more modest budget. Some might opt to rent a car in Nashville but it is my strong recommendation to use Uber and Lyft in the Music City. I have visited Nashville for 25 years and ride sharing is hugely popular and very easy and affordable in Nashville. Both options will be departing BWI midday on Friday, November 3rd, arriving in Nashville for a 3 night stay (Friday night, Saturday night, and Sunday night), departing Nashville and returning home on Monday, November 6th.

All trips include:

  • A 3-night stay at one of two hotels – downtown and less than 10 miles from downtown
  • Roundtrip travel on a major US airline
  • Admission to WNST Saturday night purple pub pep rally
  • Upper deck game ticket to Sunday’s Ravens-Titans game

NASHVILLE PREMIUM DOWNTOWN:

SINGLE (1 in a room): $1,600 per person

DOUBLE (2 in a room): $1,250 per person

TRIPLE (3 in a room): $1,100 per person

QUAD (4 in a room): $1,050 per person

  • Your $100 per person discount from this price will be reflected upon checkout!

How many in your room?

*

NASHVILLE ECONOMY SUBURB:

SINGLE (1 in a room): $1,250 per person

DOUBLE (2 in a room): $1,100 per person

TRIPLE (3 in a room): $1,000 per person

QUAD (4 in a room): $925 per person

  • Your $100 per person discount from this price will be reflected upon checkout!

How many in your room?

 

 

MINNESOTA (Oct. 20-22)

Minnesota is one of the places that the Baltimore Ravens only get to visit once every eight years. This is a special year with the Super Bowl being played there next Feburary. It’s also the first purple trip to the newest facility in the NFL and the cool, glass U.S. Bank Stadium that opened last year. We are planning a special day at the Mall of America, where I visited and got to know some folks on my 30-30 MLB #GiveASpit Tour in 2015. We’re staying downtown and will have a great event on Saturday in the Twin Cities for purple fans – and not just the ones who loved Prince!

All trips include…

  • 2-night stay at a 4 star Minneapolis downtown hotel
  • Roundtrip airfare on a major US airline
  • Admission to WNST Saturday purple pub pep rally
  • Tour of Mall of America in Bloomington
  • Upper deck game ticket to Sunday’s Ravens-Vikings game

SINGLE (1 in a room): $1,125 per person

DOUBLE (2 in a room): $925 per person

TRIPLE (3 in a room): $875 per person

QUAD (4 in a room): $850 per person

  • Your $100 per person discount from this price will be reflected upon checkout!

How many in your room?

GREEN BAY (Nov. 17-20)

Our Ravens fans have only had three chances to see the purple birds play at legendary Lambeau Field as we only get this epic trip to Green Bay only once every eight years. We had a great time in 2009, the last time we ventured into the frozen tundra, and we’ve been looking forward to going back ever since the remodeling of the facade and all of the upgrades in the area around the stadium. This is a bucket list trip for football fans across the country, and we’re fortunate to be able to offer a pair of affordable options for you to cross this one off the list and do it comfortably with our group.

This will be more of a “group” trip because of Green Bay’s tiny layout.

For flights, we’re offering two options: a flight directly into Green Bay with an airport transfer (there are no nonstop flights from Baltimore) OR a nonstop flight to Milwaukee with a luxury motorcoach making the less-than two hour drive north in Wisconsin. Both trips leave BWI on Friday morning and return on Monday afternoon.

Our two hotels are adjacent on the highway in Manitowoc, just outside of Green Bay. These are the hotels we’ve stayed in for all three of our trips to Lambeau Field in 1998, 2001 and 2009. We will have buses to transport our travelers to the casino, downtown Green Bay and to the Packers Hall of Fame. Leave the driving to us and just have some fun and relax with fellow football fans on this unique trip.

We’ve done Green Bay several times and are happy to show you a great time!

All trips include:

  • Roundtrip airfare on a major US airline from BWI to Green Bay or Milwaukee
  • 3-night stay at Holiday Inn or Quality Inn of Manitowoc
  • Motorcoach transportation in Green Bay and Manitowoc for our events
  • Admission to WNST Saturday night purple pub pep rally
  • Admission to WNST Sunday pre-game purple tailgate
  • Upper deck game ticket to Sunday’s Ravens-Packers game

WE HAVE FOUR OPTIONS WITH DIFFERENT PRICING. PLEASE SEND US AN EMAIL (nasty@wnst.net or peter@wnst.net) if you need any clarification.

This decision is essentially whether you want to fly into Green Bay or Milwaukee (with bus ride) and which hotel you select in the same parking lot.

 

GREEN BAY (Holiday Inn Manitowoc)

SINGLE (1 in a room): $1,675 per person

DOUBLE (2 in a room): $1,450 per person

TRIPLE (3 in a room): $1,375 per person

QUAD (4 in a room): $1,350 per person

  • Your $100 per person discount from this price will be reflected upon checkout!

How many in your room?

*

GREEN BAY (Quality Inn Manitowoc)

SINGLE (1 in a room): $1,525 per person

DOUBLE (2 in a room): $1,375 per person

TRIPLE (3 in a room): $1,325 per person

QUAD (4 in a room): $1,300 per person

  • Your $100 per person discount from this price will be reflected upon checkout!

How many in your room?

*

MILWAUKEE (Holiday Inn Manitowoc)

SINGLE (1 in a room): $1,500 per person

DOUBLE (2 in a room): $1,275 per person

TRIPLE (3 in a room): $1,200 per person

QUAD (4 in a room): $1,175 per person

  • Your $100 per person discount from this price will be reflected upon checkout!

How many in your room?

*

MILWAUKEE (Quality Inn Manitowoc)

SINGLE (1 in a room): $1,350 per person

DOUBLE (2 in a room): $1,200 per person

TRIPLE (3 in a room): $1,150 per person

QUAD (4 in a room): $1,125 per person

  • Your $100 per person discount from this price will be reflected upon checkout!

How many in your room?

If you have any questions or special needs, please email us: nasty@wnst.net or peter@wnst.net. We’re happy to help you so you can join us in the fall.

Thanks for all of the support over the years!

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Cobb deal puts Torrey Smith in prime position on open market

Posted on 08 March 2015 by Luke Jones

Saturday was a productive night for free-agent wide receiver Torrey Smith and brought the latest signal supporting his expected departure from the Ravens.

With the news of star wideout Randall Cobb agreeing to a four-year, $40 million contract to remain with the Green Bay Packers, Smith will only see the demand for his services rise around the league with a top free-agent receiver now off the board.  The 26-year-old Smith and Philadelphia wide receiver Jeremy Maclin are considered the top talents who will officially hit the market on 4 p.m. Tuesday for the start of free agency.

With Baltimore currently holding just $4.639 million in salary cap space, Smith is expected to find a home elsewhere with the San Francisco 49ers reportedly leading the race for the speedy receiver’s services. According to CBS Sports, the 2011 first-round pick turned down a five-year, $35 million contract prior to the 2014 season, a move that now looks wise despite a disappointing campaign in which he caught just 49 passes for 767 yards.

Despite both sides repeatedly expressing hope that they’d continue their relationship, the Ravens’ brass seemed to go out of its way to prepare fans for Smith’s departure late last month with owner Steve Bisciotti even taking a shot at the lucrative $60 million contract the Miami Dolphins gave wide receiver Mike Wallace two offseasons ago.

“Let’s be frank: Do you hope that Torrey doesn’t break the bank out in the open market so that we can get him for our number? That’s a hard thing to say,” Bisciotti said. “I care about the kid. I want him to maximize his earnings. At the same time, the more successful he is at doing that, the less success we have in retaining him. I don’t like to stand up here and say I’m rooting against the guy, but we’ve got to find a number.”

And that number is expected to be too rich with Cobb now off the market and a number of teams looking for an impact wide receiver in free agency.

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Ravens wearing all-black uniforms on Thanksgiving night

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. — Adding to the excitement of a crucial meeting with the Pittsburgh Steelers on Thanksgiving, the Ravens will wear their all-black uniforms for the nationally-televised game on Thursday night.

This marks the second straight season in which the Ravens will wear their alternate jerseys against the Steelers after they fell 23-20 to Pittsburgh on Dec. 2, 2012 while donning black jerseys with white pants. The Ravens wore their black jerseys with white pants in their Week 6 loss to the Green Bay Packers earlier this season.

Baltimore last wore black jerseys with black pants in a dominating win over the New York Giants to clinch their second straight AFC North title on Dec. 23, 2012.

After introducing the all-black look in 2004, the Ravens have gone 10-5 all-time when they wear black jerseys and are 7-2 under coach John Harbaugh. Baltimore is 6-3 when wearing black jerseys and black pants and hasn’t dropped a game in that uniform combination since the 2007 season.

The NFL allows teams to wear an alternate or throwback uniform for a maximum of two regular-season games every season.

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Ravens defense slow to stop the run in recent weeks

Posted on 22 October 2013 by Luke Jones

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

OWINGS MILLS, Md. — After revamping their front seven in an offseason filled with changes on both sides of the ball, the Ravens expected their run defense to be one of their biggest strengths in 2013.

With veterans such as Chris Canty, Daryl Smith, and Marcus Spears joining a nucleus that already included Pro Bowl mainstays Terrell Suggs and Haloti Ngata, the Ravens were all but assured to improve substantially from a year ago when they fielded the league’s 20th-ranked run defense and gave up 122.8 yards per game on the ground. All appeared to be going to plan early in the season as Baltimore entered its Week 4 meeting with the Buffalo Bills ranked fourth against the run.

Instead, an unexpected loss to the Bills on Sept. 29 started a disturbing trend as the Ravens have now allowed 140 or more yards on the ground in three of their last four games. That stretch continued in humbling fashion this past Sunday as the Steelers’ running game — ranked 31st out of 32 teams entering Week 7 — bullied the Ravens to the tune of 141 yards on 29 carries in a 19-16 defeat to their AFC North rivals.

“They did some new things that we haven’t seen from them,” Suggs said. “Not just this year, but ever. Pittsburgh has never come out and run the Wildcat on us. They’ve never come out with extra linemen. You just have to be able to adjust on the fly. They were able to get some runs off of that early on.”

Entering their bye week with the NFL’s 16th-ranked rush defense at 104.3 yards given up per game, the Ravens have been slow to adjust to the opponents’ running game on more than one occasion this year. In preparing for the Bills, the Ravens spent extensive time focusing on the read-option attack that had been used by quarterback EJ Manuel before Buffalo used more of a conventional approach in gaining 203 yards on 55 carries with 116 coming in the first half. Instructed to use patience in letting the play come to them when facing the read option, the Ravens were instead on their heels as Fred Jackson and C.J. Spiller had huge days on the ground for the Bills.

By the time defensive coordinator Dean Pees made the necessary adjustments at halftime, the Ravens were already behind on a day in which quarterback Joe Flacco threw a career-worst five interceptions and the Bills were able to use a conservative ground approach in the second half.

Against the Steelers, the Ravens couldn’t have been expecting such a run-heavy approach, but Pittsburgh used gadget plays as well as a steady diet of rookie Le’Veon Bell to exploit the aggressive tendencies of the front seven. It wasn’t a matter of being unable to shed blocks but a failure to play individual assignments and to read blocks longer in protecting cutbacks, according to Pees.

Other times, the defensive line was simply controlled at the line of scrimmage by a Pittsburgh line that included three backup starters due to injuries.

“The first run of the game, we got the guy stuffed in the hole, and then we just kind of jump off a block a little too quick,” Pees said. “We’re a little too impatient, and [Le’Veon] Bell is a patient runner, and he ended up cutting it all the way back on us right into a blitz. And everything was good until we just jumped off the block, and then he found the crease. That happened to us about three or four times during the course of the game that we got off blocks actually too quick.”

The 141 rushing yards surrendered against Pittsburgh followed the 140 given up the previous week in a home loss to the Green Bay Packers, who sport the league’s sixth-ranked rushing attack. Unlike the Steelers who were able to consistently grind out yards to extend drives, the Packers collected a sizable portion of their production on just a few runs when rookie Eddie Lacy ran for 47 yards on the first two plays of the game and then collected another 17-yard run in the fourth quarter.

Aside from the Steelers’ final march to kick the game-winning field goal on Sunday, no drive was more painful than the 13-play, 70-yard sequence that resulted in a 28-yard field goal and took over eight minutes off the clock in the third quarter. The Steelers gained 41 yards on the ground during that possession alone as their running game was a major factor in controlling the clock and limiting Baltimore to just seven possessions over the entire game.

“[The Pittsburgh game] wasn’t as much big plays as just as kind of bleeding us,” Pees said. “Six, seven, eight yards, which really created a second problem, and that’s third down, which we’ve been very good at. But I’ve said it before: It’s hard to be good on third down when it’s third-and-one and third-and-two.”

The defense has been far from the Ravens’ biggest problem in a disappointing 3-4 start, but Sunday marked the second straight week in which failing to stop the run was a major contributor in the opponent’s ability to put together a long drive in the second half. Against the Packers, the Ravens surrendered 36 rushing yards on a 72-yard fourth-quarter drive that lasted 7:35 and gave Green Bay a nine-point lead with just over four minutes to go. The Ravens would quickly score a touchdown to pull within two but would not get the ball back as the Packers then ran out the clock.

With an offense that’s largely struggled to simply move the ball consistently let alone score touchdowns instead of field goals, limiting its total number of possessions is a recipe for failure more often than not. And a run defense failing to meet high expectations is another reason why the Ravens have lost three of four to fall below the .500 mark for the first time this late in a season in the John Harbaugh era.

No matter what the reason in a given week, the leaky run defense is just one of several issues plaguing the Ravens as they approach the midway point of the season.

“The yardage is the same, which is not good, which we’ve got to get corrected,” Pees said. “If we’re going to be a good defense, we can’t let anybody run the ball on us.”

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The Five Plays That Determined The Game: Ravens/Packers

Posted on 15 October 2013 by Glenn Clark

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

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

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

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

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

Glenn Clark’s Plays…

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

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

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

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

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

Just an absolute disaster that lead to free points.

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

The play that really ended things.

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

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

(Continued on Page 2…)

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D&L Window Tinting Morning Reaction Tuesday Top 7 Ravens – Week 6

Posted on 15 October 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 19-17 loss to the Green Bay Packers in Week 6. 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 hear Jones’ full explanation HERE and Forrester’s HERE.

Luke Jones’ Top 7 …

7) Terrell Suggs
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6) Arthur Jones
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5) Joe Flacco
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4) Jimmy Smith
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3) Tandon Doss
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2) Dallas Clark
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1) Elvis Dumervil
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Drew Forrester’s Top 7 …

CONTINUE ON NEXT PAGE >>>>>

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No signs of life from Ravens’ stagnant running game in loss to Packers

Posted on 13 October 2013 by Luke Jones

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

BALTIMORE — The post-game comments have become as predictable as the offensive woes every week as the Ravens fell 19-17 to the Green Bay Packers on Sunday.

The same buzzwords and clichés have been echoed in describing an offensive line and running game that have been miserable through the first six weeks of the season. After showing signs of life in running for 100 yards in the second half against Miami last week, the Ravens are back to the drawing board again after being held to 47 yards on 22 carries against the Packers to fall to 3-3 on the season.

This week, there was no Bryant McKinnie to pick on as the newly-acquired Eugene Monroe took his place as the starting left tackle, but the results weren’t any better. The combination of young center Gino Gradkowski and the implementation of run-game coordinator Juan Castillo’s zone blocking schemes have received the bulk of the criticism, but the end result can’t be overstated or oversimplified in blaming only two individuals, either.

The entire Baltimore offensive line has been bad. Really bad.

“The thing that we’re not going to do is overreact,” coach John Harbaugh said. “You don’t go in there and make any kind of major adjustments when you know you’re doing things well, and you’ve got the people to do it. We’re a work in progress, no doubt about it.”

That line of explanation was acceptable over the first few weeks of the seasons when the Ravens faced some talented front sevens and were adjusting to new personnel, but in order to be a work in progress, there actually has to be some progress being made. And as the Ravens approach the midway point, the same problems continue to plague an offense that has been shut out in the first quarter four times in six games this season.

Though many might describe the decision to trade for Monroe in the middle of the season an example of overreacting, perhaps it’s time for Harbaugh to shake things up even more. There are simply too many holdovers from an offensive line that played terrifically in the Ravens’ march to Super Bowl XLVII nine months ago to accept being this bad. That’s why the fingers pointed in the direction of Castillo and Gradkowski are understandable.

Baltimore entered Week 6 gaining just 2.8 yards per carry and averaged 2.1 against the Packers as neither Pro Bowl running back Ray Rice nor backup Bernard Pierce could find consistent room to run. The offensive line was once again dominated physically and more miscommunication allowed unblocked defenders to blow up plays in the backfield on several occasions.

“What you saw out there is not what we put out in practice,” said Rice, who was held to 34 yards on 14 carries. “We practiced so hard. I guess I’d use the words ‘a little frustrated.’ You can’t take our hard work away. We work so hard.”

But that hard work isn’t paying off as the absence of a productive running game is making life too difficult for quarterback Joe Flacco, who played commendably in throwing for 342 yards and two touchdowns in defeat. Critics will mock Flacco’s pedestrian numbers this season in the aftermath of the 28-year-old receiving a $120.6 million contract, but he isn’t good enough and doesn’t have the sufficient weapons to thrive without any semblance of a running game.

No Dennis Pitta, no Anquan Boldin, and no running game? You might as well ask Flacco to play without three of his four limbs, and that’s not even considering the pass protection that’s been better than the run blocking but still too inconsistent this season.

The Ravens were 2-for-14 on third down against the Packers on Sunday and only four of those opportunities required less than nine yards to convert. In the first quarter, the Ravens gained nine yards on nine plays on first and second down, leaving Flacco and the passing game with an uphill climb over and over.

“It’s tough when you don’t have any success on first and second down,” Flacco said. “You’re putting yourself in third-down situations and the only way you score touchdowns or kick a field goal is you convert four third downs to get there — and you get 12 yards at a time. Twelve yards, 12 yards, 12 yards. In order to sustain drives, you need to get first downs on first and second down, and you need to get a couple chunks in there, and we’re not doing that.”

The frustration is clear, because even with the personnel changes made from last year, there is still too much talent present to be this poor offensively, especially when it comes to the running game.

The Ravens simply can’t expect to overcome the slow starts by the offense on a weekly basis to win many games. The defense allowed a 64-yard touchdown pass from Aaron Rodgers to Jordy Nelson late in the third quarter and wilted in the final 15 minutes as Green Bay put together a field-goal drive lasting more than seven minutes, but the overall effort of giving up 19 points to one of the best offenses in the NFL should have been enough to win.

The offense isn’t doing it’s part and it starts up front. As Flacco described it after the game, the 17 points scored in the second half were “too little, too late.”

“We’ve just not getting it done as well as we want to in the first half,” Pro Bowl right guard Marshal Yanda said. “We come in at halftime and it’s like, ‘We’ve got to get going. We’ve got to do this.’ And it’s been like that almost every game this year. We want to start faster and help the defense out. I think they played tremendous today. Versus Aaron Rodgers, they did awesome. We all want to get it right. Everybody’s frustrated.”

There are no easy solutions as it’s clear Harbaugh and his coaching staff haven’t found them through the first six weeks of the season, but they must take a look at Castillo’s schemes and Gradkowski’s performance, specifically when it comes to making the proper calls at the line. And perhaps it’s time to reassess how offensive coordinator Jim Caldwell starts games since that’s when the Ravens have been particularly bad offensively.

Instead of hoping to establish the running game early, maybe the Ravens need to come out throwing to set up the run as the game progresses. At the very least, it would put the ball in Flacco’s hands to give him more control in preventing the third-and-long situations he’s pointed to as being a major problem.

It’s becoming apparent that giving the ball to Rice won’t automatically fix the Ravens’ problems despite what many had you believe after last week’s game.

“I always feel like we can mix it up a little bit more on first and second down just to get everybody going,” Flacco said. “It’s tough to say when we’re just not running the ball up to the ability that we think we should run it. If we were running the ball better, we wouldn’t be saying it. We wouldn’t be talking about it.”

But we are.

And it continues to be the biggest problem plaguing the Ravens this season.

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Our Ravens/Packers “Slaps to the Head”

Posted on 13 October 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 Creative Deck Designs Postgame Show on AM1570 WNST.net.

The Ravens fell to the Green Bay Packers 19-17 Sunday at M&T Bank 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. James Ihedigbo

4. Lardarius Webb

3. Gino Gradkowski

2. Juan Castillo

1. Ray Rice (Two Slaps)

(Continued on Page 2…)

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Flacco: “You can’t expect to play that badly for that long and win”

Posted on 13 October 2013 by WNSTV

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Ravens-Packers: Inactives and pre-game notes

Posted on 13 October 2013 by Luke Jones

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BALTIMORE — Playing their only home game in the month of October, the Ravens face arguably their toughest opponent at M&T Bank Stadium this season as the Green Bay Packers come to town for the first time since 2005.

Despite 11 players being listed as questionable on the final injury report of the week, the Ravens find themselves healthier now than they’ve been at any point since the start of the season as wide receiver Jacoby Jones makes his return to action for the first time since suffering a sprained MCL in his right knee in the season opener. It will be interesting to see how the Pro Bowl return specialist factors into the offensive game plan as well as on special teams after a layoff of more than a month.

The Ravens will have a new left tackle as the newly-acquired Eugene Monroe will make his debut for his new team after being acquired from the Jacksonville Jaguars less than two weeks ago. The eighth overall pick of the 2009 draft will replace Bryant McKinnie in the starting lineup as McKinnie was ruled inactive, a sign that the Ravens are confident that Monroe has firmly grasped the Baltimore offense.

Wide receiver Marlon Brown (hamstring) is active and will play after missing last week’s game while veteran Brandon Stokley was the only wide receiver declared inactive after he practiced on a limited basis with the groin injury all week.

Defensive tackle Terrence Cody was ruled inactive for the third straight game since injuring his knee in the first quarter of the Week 3 win over the Houston Texans on Sept. 22. Defensive tackle Marcus Spears is also inactive for the second straight week as he continues to recover from a knee injury, but he wouldn’t have figured to factor into the defensive plan very much with the Packers’ propensity to throw the football.

As expected, Pro Bowl defensive tackle Haloti Ngata is active and will start after being limited with a hip injury in practices this past week.

Meanwhile, the Packers are banged up significantly on the defensive side of the ball as starting linebackers Clay Matthews and Brad Jones and No. 3 cornerback Casey Hayward were ruled out for Sunday’s game earlier in the week. The absence of Matthews is a major blow to the Packers’ pass rush that will try to aid the league’s 26th-ranked pass defense.

Weather could be a factor in Sunday’s game as the forecast calls for temperatures in the mid-60s with a chance of light rain and drizzle in the early afternoon. The footing on the turf at M&T Bank Stadium did not appear to create too many problems during pre-game warmups.

Sunday marks the fifth all-time meeting in the regular season between these teams as the Packers hold a 3-1 edge and won the last game in 2009. The Packers lost their only other game played at M&T Bank Stadium, a 48-3 thrashing on Dec. 19, 2005 with former Ravens quarterback Kyle Boller getting the best of future Hall of Famer Brett Favre.

The Ravens are wearing black jerseys with white pants for Sunday’s game while Green Bay dons its white tops with gold pants.

Gene Steratore and his crew will officiate Sunday’s game between the Ravens and Packers.

Here are Sunday’s inactives:

BALTIMORE
DT Terrence Cody
OL Jah Reid
OL Ryan Jensen
OT Bryant McKinnie
WR Brandon Stokley
LB John Simon
DT Marcus Spears

GREEN BAY
CB Jarrett Bush
CB Casey Hayward
RB James Starks
LB Clay Matthews
LB Brad Jones
OL Greg Van Roten
DE Josh Boyd

Follow WNST on Twitter throughout the afternoon for updates and analysis as Nestor Aparicio and I bring live coverage from Baltimore throughout the day.

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