Tag Archive | "pats"

The 15-7-0 Might Be Tricky, But It’s Always A Treat

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The 15-7-0 Might Be Tricky, But It’s Always A Treat

Posted on 31 October 2011 by Glenn Clark

You know how it works. 15 positive football observations, 7 “not so” positive football observations and one “oh no” moment from outside the world of football.

(As a reminder, we don’t do Baltimore Ravens analysis here. We do PLENTY of that elsewhere. This is about the rest of the world of football.)

15 Positive Observations…

1. With the entire country winning, Andrew Luck looked like a Heisman Trophy winner and future #1 pick Saturday night in Los Angeles.

It’s a shame the USC Trojans gave the ball away just outside the endzone in overtime number three against Stanford. Not only because I picked the Cardinal to lose last Thursday when I played John Allen (of Charm City Devils fame) in “Everybody Beats Glenn”, but also because it was a hell of a game.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rx7vpD_D4g0[/youtube]

I’ll go ahead and move Luck ahead of Boise State QB Kellen Moore on my Heisman Watch list. Yeah, I guess I’m a sellout. But it’s hard not to like what you see with this kid. Alabama RB Trent Richardson is third on my list; which now ends at three because one of those guys will be your winner.

Going back to Saturday night, Andrew Luck also did this…

luck

2. Marvin Lewis is (very deservingly) the winningest coach in Cincinnati Bengals history.

I get more and more concerned about the Ravens’ pending matchups with the Bengals every time I watch them…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u0an-M9us5Y[/youtube]

They did all of that without Cedric Benson and they were playing the Seahawks IN Seattle.

By the way, did you know Adam “Pacman” Jones was still in the NFL? Me neither.

3. I’ll assume Frank Gore is particularly happy to no longer be thought of as “the best player on a bad team.”

Also part of the San Francisco 49ers’ win over the Cleveland Browns? Joe Staley playing the role of “Offensive Lineman” in “Offensive Lineman makes catch, runs with football”….

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JDTJcYX4hQA[/youtube]

Just beautiful. By the way, I guess the Niners have to be number two in my new NFL power rankings, right? How’s that possible?

4. Penn State controls their own destiny to reach the Big Ten Championship Game, but their schedule leads you to believe Ohio State is still very much in the mix.

Joe Paterno passed Eddie Robinson as the all-time winningest coach in Division I history as Penn State beat Illinois. It was the only time the word “pass” was used in Happy Valley Saturday. I don’t care for much of anything about the Nittany Lions, but I respect their students for packing in behind the goalposts to try to make the Illini’s tying field goal try harder…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j-4XhbiILGI[/youtube]

Things get VERY difficult for PSU now, as they host Nebraska in State College next week before finishing conference play with trips to Columbus and Madison. Speaking of which…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iwuXzK5Mehs[/youtube]

Wisconsin fans were once again hoping a penalty flag could save them, but Braxton Miller did NOT cross the line of scrimmage before throwing the game winner to Devin Smith. Russell Wilson’s Heisman hopes are totally up in smoke, and the Badgers are now a long shot (at best) for the Rose Bowl, while the Buckeyes are still very much in the picture.

5. Nebraska is firmly back in the race for the Other spot in the Big Ten title game, and Michigan is by no means out of the picture.

Michigan State had no magic left after an incredible two weeks-or more realistically had no answer for some dude named Rex Burkhead, who reportedly plays for the Cornhuskers…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TiYLzEwG16Y[/youtube]

Elsewhere in the world of bizarre football names, the Wolverines stomped Purdue thanks to a running back whose name is (seriously) Fitzgerald Toussaint. Shouldn’t he be playing for Dartmouth?

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BXTWG9xmjgs[/youtube]

Not part of the Big Ten title picture? Iowa. They lost to Minnesota. Yes. That Minnesota.

6. Stephen Tulloch may have shut down the internet after sacking Tim Tebow in the Detroit Lions’ win over the Denver Broncos.

We’ll start with the highlights…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tc7Zp6FdEVU[/youtube]

And now for those that missed it in the video…

tulloch

I like Tim Tebow. I also like this. It is what it is.

7. I guess we can assume the Philadelphia Eagles are just fine at this point.

The Eagles DESTROYED the Dallas Cowboys on Sunday Night Football. Sadly the highlight of the game was a Laurent Robinson catch that didn’t count at all…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1FwDZz-a6r8[/youtube]

The SNF broadcast was obsessed with Philly O-Line coach Howard Mudd. I actually have no issue with that. Howard Mudd is awesome. Otherwise they’d have been obsessed with Rob Ryan, and I’m about done with that.

Also of note, Jason Kelce snapped the ball off his own ass at one point…

kelce

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“The Reality Check” Week 6 NFL Power Rankings

Posted on 12 October 2011 by Glenn Clark

Glenn Clark’s Rankings…

32.  Miami Dolphins (Last Week: 32)

Enjoy Sage Rosenfels, Fins fans.

31.  Indianapolis Colts (LW: 30)

They’ll get a win at some point…I think.

30.  St. Louis Rams (LW: 27)

I had a feeling they were going to lose during their bye week.

29. Arizona Cardinals (LW: 24)

I hope the Cards had a Plan B.

28.  Minnesota Vikings (LW: 31)

Getting a win will delay calls for Christian Ponder to start for at least another few days.

27.  Jacksonville Jaguars (LW: 29)

I get the feeling they’ll win another game before moving to Los Angeles.

26.  Denver Broncos (LW: 25)

If I was betting, I’d bet against Tim Tebow becoming a great NFL quarterback. I’m not a betting man.

25.  Kansas City Chiefs (LW: 26)

They’re playing cornhole now in Todd Haley’s locker room. Hey-it worked in Owings Mills.

24.  Philadelphia Eagles (LW:18)

Andy Reid would be 34th.

23.  Carolina Panthers (LW: 23)

Close doesn’t count in football. But it’s still better than getting blown out.

22.  Cleveland Browns (LW: 21)

I see them being somewhere in this range all season.

21.  Seattle Seahawks (LW: 28)

Yeah, I still don’t understand how they went to New Jersey and won either.

20.  Cincinnati Bengals (LW: 22)

I really feel like AJ Green is the difference in keeping them relevant until (nearly) the end of the season.

19.  Dallas Cowboys (LW: 19)

I think I heard criticism of Tony Romo during his bye.

18.  Chicago Bears (LW: 13)

Lovie Smith should be proud. All of the time he spent practicing false starts with his team has paid off.

17.  New York Jets (LW: 16)

They looked better against the Pats. They still don’t look very good.

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The 15-7-0 Doesn’t Have a Diploma To Burn Even If It Wanted To

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The 15-7-0 Doesn’t Have a Diploma To Burn Even If It Wanted To

Posted on 03 October 2011 by Glenn Clark

You know how it works. 15 positive football observations, 7 “not so” positive football observations and one “oh no” moment from outside the world of football.

(As a reminder, we don’t do Ravens analysis here. We do PLENTY of that elsewhere. This is about the rest of the world of football.)

15 Positive Observations..

1. The Packers are the best team in the NFL, but you already knew that

I’m not really sure what else can be said about Green Bay. Aaron Rodgers is amazing. The team is incredibly deep.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=begTfGMrsq8[/youtube]

I was wondering the other day why the NFL wouldn’t put a Super Bowl at Lambeau Field if they’re going to have one in New Jersey. Then I had a sandwich. It was quite a day.

Side note: I’m extremely jealous of sports fans in Wisconsin. They the Packers, the Badgers (more on them next) and the Milwaukee Brewers rocking and rolling. SportsGrid.com noted that Sunday’s Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel headline is the happiest in sports history…

mjs

2. Kellen Moore leads the way, but Trent Richardson and Russell Wilson have joined my personal Heisman Trophy Top 5 list

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o5lG8G67UFY[/youtube]
[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8tnWKrQvss0[/youtube]
[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ysCN4yA8hhs[/youtube]

The others in my Top 5 are South Carolina RB Marcus Lattimore and Baylor QB Robert Griffin III. Lattimore had a tough day Saturday and Griffin threw his first interception of the year (really) in the Bears’ loss to Kansas State. After you watch the profile ESPN’s College Gameday did of him Saturday morning you’ll certainly forget that ever happened…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mhyqhn1LJps[/youtube]

3. It’s clearly a mistake that I DON’T have Andrew Luck or Tyrann Mathieu on my Heisman Trophy Top 5 list right now

Andrew Luck is a quarterback. So explain to me how he did THIS in Stanford’s win over UCLA Saturday night…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=89wGMqET3AM[/youtube]

Side note: A few sites found this video of the ESPN ticker showing an odd UCLA-Stanford score during the Nebraska-Wisconsin game. I don’t believe it was accurate…

stanforducla

Few people know who Tyrann Mathieu is. Fewer know how to pronounce his name. No one knows how to spell it. But Kentucky fans will never forget any of those things about the LSU CB I assume…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tnWQp_V_dXc[/youtube]

4. It’s crazy how good Devin Hester is at returning punts

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2OjqEZQmZwo[/youtube]

Also stemming from Sunday in the Windy City…

-I don’t know if Steve Smith is still happy the Carolina Panthers didn’t trade him, but it was the absolute right decision based on wanting to develop Cam Newton.

-Matt Forte also ran all over the place and the Chicago Bears looked good in a win. I’m still not buying into them, but I’m a Jay Cutler hater so my opinion should only matter so much.

-Here’s Marion Barber faceplanting after attempting a backflip when he scored a touchdown in the game. Enjoy!

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_c30cSwjPDk[/youtube]

5. Maybe the Tennessee Titans CAN survive without Kenny Britt?

Nate Washington looked good and Jared Cook finally showed why I drafted him to my fantasy team this year (although I already dropped him needing depth), but I’m still not convinced they can keep treading water without Britt…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P1kY2FO2wxk[/youtube]

…in other news, I told Cleveland Browns fans last week to take a picture of the AFC North standings. I hope they took my advice.

6. I want to put Tajh Boyd on my Heisman watch list too. Can I have a Top 10 instead of a Top 5?

I’m confused. Clemson looked good against Auburn, then again against Florida State, then AGAIN against Virginia Tech. Who are these Tigers and what have they done with the roller coaster team we’ve all come to know and not love?

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MRRc3n4D-Cc[/youtube]

I still think the Hokies are a factor in the ACC before the season is over. I think a lot of things. Like for example, who is Melissa Giraldo and why is this the first I’ve heard of her? (Thanks Busted Coverage!)

7. Not only is the SEC better than the other conferences in the FBS, SEC fans are better than fans in other conferences in the FBS

Here are the highlights from a thrilling Arkansas win over Texas A&M at Cowboys Stadium in Arlington, which included an incredible 510 passing yards from Razorbacks QB Tyler Wilson…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nVsLYxOsr2o[/youtube]

And here’s the .gif of the shirtless “man of a larger carriage” celebrating SOMETHING the Hogs did Saturday…

hogs

That’s just fantastic.

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“The Reality Check” Week 4 NFL Power Rankings

Posted on 28 September 2011 by Glenn Clark

Glenn Clark’s Rankings…

32. Kansas City Chiefs (Last Week: 32)

They played the Bolts close. I’m stunned, but I don’t think they’re any good.

31. Indianapolis Colts (LW: 31)

Like with KC, I was surprised the Colts were able to keep it close against the Steelers. That being said, they worked out Brodie Croyle. Jim Irsay’s Twitter feed is more significant than this football team.

30. Miami Dolphins (LW: 27)

They’re probably not this bad, but that doesn’t matter when you’re 0-3.

29. Jacksonville Jaguars (LW: 29)

I assume Blaine Gabbert is better than Luke McCown. I assume.

28. Minnesota Vikings (LW: 28)

They’ve shown me a couple more signs than the other winless teams, but only a couple.

27. Seattle Seahawks (LW: 30)

Tavaris Jackson won a game. So you know, he’s got that going for him. Which is nice.

26. Cincinnati Bengals (LW: 24)

They play pretty good defense, but Andy Dalton is their quarterback. Perhaps Marvin Lewis should hold off on guaranteeing wins.

25. St. Louis Rams (LW: 21)

I thought they would be better before the start of the season. They’ve played three at least fairly good teams. I’m convinced Sam Bradford still makes them better than their record shows.

24. Denver Broncos (LW: 22)

Play Tim Tebow. Or don’t. They’re not gonna win many games either way.

23. Carolina Panthers (LW: 23)

A win over the Jags is one thing, but the visit to The Windy City will be tougher for Cam Newton and company.

22. San Francisco 49ers (LW: 26)

The NFC West is such garbage.

21. Arizona Cardinals (LW: 19)

The NFC West is such garbage.

20. Cleveland Browns (LW: 25)

Fans in Ohio should probably go ahead and get a screencap of the AFC North standings this week.

19. Tennessee Titans (LW: 20)

They won two games with Kenny Britt. You think they’ll win more than that without?

18. Washington Redskins (LW: 15)

I’d like to think they’ll be .500 after their trip to “The Lou”, but I saw the Rams last week.

17. Chicago Bears (LW: 13)

Their losses are to the Saints and Packers. I still don’t think they’re great.

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“The Reality Check” Week 3 NFL Power Rankings

Posted on 21 September 2011 by Glenn Clark

Glenn Clark’s Power Rankings…

32. Kansas City Chiefs (Last Week: 21)

I’ve been calling them fraudulent for some time. Anyone want to disagree with me?

31. Indianapolis Colts (LW: 20)

You can officially not worry about them playing in the Super Bowl in their home stadium…clearly.

30. Seattle Seahawks (LW: 30)

I still feel like they’ll steal a few wins, especially in the division. Why they haven’t signed David Garrard is beyond me…

29. Jacksonville Jaguars (LW: 29)

Yeah, Blaine Gabbert will have to play soon. Or they can just lose…

28. Minnesota Vikings (LW: 28)

I was surprised the Vikes played the Bucs tough. I wasn’t surprised they lost.

27. Miami Dolphins (LW: 25)

At least they didn’t waste their time with Reggie Bush. We’ll see if Daniel Thomas can get them back on track.

26. San Francisco 49ers (LW: 27)

They nearly beat the Cowboys, but then they turned into the Niners again.

25. Cleveland Browns (LW: 31)

They got a win, so I had to move them up. I’m still not buying into them.

24. Cincinnati Bengals (LW: 24)

I thought their defense was better than they showed against the Broncos. Is Carson Palmer REALLY just tailgating at USC games these days?

23. Carolina Panthers (LW: 23)

I shouldn’t let them be this far up winless, but they look kinda okay to me.

22. Denver Broncos (LW: 26)

Tim Tebow Tim Tebow Tim Tebow Tim Tebow Tim Tebow Tim Tebow Tim Tebow Tim Tebow.

21. St. Louis Rams (LW: 22)

They’ve played two tough teams. They have to play another Sunday. They’re going to win at some point. God I hope it isn’t this week.

20. Tennessee Titans (LW: 32)

This should be proof that I have no idea what I’m doing.

19. Arizona Cardinals (LW: 12)

They’re really close to being 2-0. They’re clearly the best in a terrible division thus far.

18. New York Giants (LW: 18)

They won Monday night. Why am I not more impressed?

17. Oakland Raiders (LW: 17)

They’re better than I gave them credit for initially. I just don’t know how much better.

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Top 10 Baseball Distractions

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Top 10 Baseball Distractions

Posted on 27 June 2011 by Glenn Clark

Honorable Mention: WNBA-Seattle Storm @ Washington Mystics (Sunday 4pm from Verizon Center live on Comcast SportsNet); Arena Football: AFL Pittsburgh Power @ Orlando Predators (Friday 8pm from Orlando live on NFL Network); Canadian Football League: British Columbia Lions @ Montreal Alouettes (Thursday 7:30pm from Montreal live on NFL Network), Toronto Argonauts @ Calgary Stampeders (Saturday 8pm from Calgary live on NFL Network); NBA Collective Bargaining Agreement Expires (Friday); Cycling-Tour De France (Stage 1 Saturday Stage 2 Sunday Stage 3 Monday 8am live on VERSUS)

10. R. Kelly (Friday 8pm 1st Mariner Arena/Saturday 8pm Verizon Center); Trace Adkins (Friday 6:30pm Pier Six Pavilion); Kid Cudi (Saturday 6:30pm Merriweather Post Pavilion); Red/Red Jumpsuit Apparatus (Wednesday 6:30pm Rams Head Live); Todd Rundgren (Wednesday 8pm Rams Head On Stage); Matt and Kim (Tuesday 7pm 9:30 Club); “A Capitol Fourth” feat. Little Richard (Monday 8pm from the U.S. Capitol live on PBS); Uncle Sam Jam feat. Pat McGee Band & Blind Melon (Saturday 2pm National Harbor); Wale (Saturday 10pm Unitas Stadium), Transformers: Dark of the Moon (Wednesday) and Larry Crowne (Friday) open in theaters

You can make fun of me all you want. If you don’t dig “Honky Tonk Badonkadonk” you and I are simply going to have to agree to disagree…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vNVguvNE7qc[/youtube]

I really feel like I should dig Kid Cudi much more than I do. All told, he’s okay…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Xt22KvnRSL4[/youtube]

I’ve actually seen Little Richard play once before…it was right after Maryland pasted Tennessee in the 2002 Peach Bowl. He played in the middle of downtown Atlanta, as they dropped a huge peach behind him. It kicked ass…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kZ6h0kyqSRk[/youtube]

I don’t know how many more praises I can sing for Wale. Dude is incredible, even if he is an effing Redskins fan…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6zZqtYXDeh8[/youtube]

9. 4th of July Fireworks (Monday 9:30pm Inner Harbor); 4th of July parades/fireworks throughout Baltimore County (Saturday-Monday)

I’m partial myself to the Kingsville 4th of July parade having grown up on Bradshaw Road. As a youngster, it was nice to have something to do in town on Independence Day. Or at least a refreshing change of pace from what there was to do every other day in Kingsville…

nothing

So how did we get in so much trouble????

8. Boxing: IBF/WBO/WBA Heavyweight Championship Unification-Wladimir Klitschko vs. David Haye (Saturday 4:45pm from Hamburg, GER live on HBO), Friday Night Fights-Mark Melligen vs. Sebastian Lujan (Friday 11pm from San Antonio, TX live on ESPN2)

If a heavyweight title fight is held and no one pays attention, did it really happen?

This isn’t just a “everyone has a piece of the title so we’ll fight for a tenth of it” title fight, either. This is a legitimate “heavyweight championship of the world” title fight.

And yet…crickets.

Look, if Wladimir Klitschko wants people to pay attention to his next fight, I suggest he make it a “foxy boxing” contest against Jarah Marino (Thanks Guyism)…

jarah

Hey man…I know what I have to do to get page views, Wlad might have to do the same…

7. Auto Racing: NASCAR Coke Zero 400 (Saturday 7:30pm from Daytona, FL live on TNT)

I was in Charles Town, West Virginia Saturday night playing the ponies to celebrate a friend’s birthday. In the 5th race, the Number 5 horse literally through its’ jockey off not even a furlong in-only to go on to “win” the race by a nose. (Without the rider the win of course did not count.)

A young man standing near the rail near our party (who I’m reasonably certain was from WV) exclaimed “I ain’t never seen the #48 car do that!

So that’s what I’ve got from the world of NASCAR this week. Oh-apparently Kurt Busch won this week’s NASCAR race. And I saw Cars 2 Friday night! While I was sitting in the theater waiting for the flick to start, I Tweeted the following (follow me on Twitter @GlennClarkWNST)…

“Out to see #Cars2 tonight. #Thingsa27yearoldwithoutkidsshouldneverTweet”

So…yep…that’s all I’ve got for NASCAR. Honestly though, what did you expect?

6. Golf: PGA Tour AT&T National (Thursday & Friday 3pm live on Golf Channel, Saturday & Sunday 3pm live on CBS. All golf from Newton Square, PA); Champions Tour Principal Charity Classic (Friday 6:30pm Saturday & Sunday 7:30pm from West Des Moines, IA live on Golf Channel)

The National used to be an event that folks cared about because it was hosted by Tiger Woods. That was of course before Tiger Woods retired from competitive golf without having the decency to hold as much as a press conference to announce his decision.

Without Tiger, Drew Forrester will once again be the only person who cares even a little bit about the event. But since it’s near Philadelphia, it’s a great excuse to pass along this snippet of food porn…

patssteak

Look man…I’m no golf fan…but if watching a couple holes earned me a trip to Pat’s…I might be in.

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Will the Ravens Ever Get Over the Hump? Steelers, Ravens Review

Posted on 16 January 2011 by Michael Schwartz

The Ravens and Steelers are the same team in different uniforms. They both like to run the ball and play hard nose defense. So, who would have thought that these teams would have 55 points combined? This game had a lot more offense than anticipated. The Ravens have had trouble beating Ben Roethlisberger and that didn’t change on this day. The final score was 31-24 Steelers, but if you saw the first half you would have thought the Ravens scored 42 and the Steelers 13.

The first half was dominated by Baltimore. After the Steelers had a 10 play 80 yard drive which led to a one yard run by Rashard Mendenhall. The Ravens came back with their own 10 play 68 yard drive. On the following Steelers possession, Terrell Suggs forced a fumble on Big Ben and Cory Redding picked it up and scored a touchdown, while all of the other players thought the play was over. This play was very strange since all of the Ravens and Steelers were standing around think the play was over. Veteran Ray Lewis didn’t even go for the ball on the ground, and he is somebody who always plays until the whistle. This gave Baltimore a 14-7 lead and they had the momentum. In the second quarter the Ravens offense had a short field after a Steelers turnover and the Ravens scored a touchdown with 3:02 in the first half. This gave the Ravens a 14 point lead going into halftime, and many people thought that the Ravens were finally going to beat their divisional rival.

In the second half everything changed. The Steelers came out on fire tying the game within the first 10 minutes. Ray Rice, who hasn’t fumbled all year, caught a pass out of the backfield and had it stripped and lost it. This was a turning point in the game because this led to the Steelers first touchdown which gave them all of the momentum. Then Hines Ward caught an eight yard touchdown pass and the game was tied up.

Going into the fourth quarter Baltimore had 0 momentum while the Steelers had it all. The Ravens had to make adjustments on the offensive side of the ball in order to win. It is very difficult for a defense to stop a team when they are 23 or 25 yards from your end zone. The Steelers made a field goal and then the Ravens countered back with a field goal. With about four minutes to play the Steelers the Steelers were faced with a 3rd and 19. Big Ben threw a 58 yard pass to Antonio Brown who was out at the four yard line. Ladarius Webb was one on one and Brown just ran by him. Webb said after the game that he wasn’t expecting help over the top and he thought that Brown was going to stop right when he got enough for the first down. Webb guessed wrong and it hurt the Ravens because with a minute and change the Steelers scored a touchdown. On the kickoff they kicked it to Lerron McClain who got it to the 50. The Ravens were in business until Joe Flacco got sacked on third down. It was 4th and 19 and it was the Ravens last chance. Joe Flacco threw a perfect pass to T.J Houshmanzadah, but he dropped it. The ball hit him between the 8 and 4. It was a perfect pass by Flacco and it would have given the Ravens a first down. The Steelers just kneeled the rest of the time away and again the Ravens couldn’t beat Big Ben.

There are a lot of facebook status updates and tweets saying how Flacco is not that quarterback who can get you over the hump. I disagree and that is because he put the team in the position to win. On third and goal, Joe Flacco threw a ball to Anquan Boldin that hit him in the chest and he dropped it. This would have given the Ravens a four point lead and the Steelers would have had to get a touchdown. They got a touchdown but the Ravens would have some momentum and they would probably do some different things. Looking at that and saying what if, is not the point. The receivers who dropped the ball were the ones complaining all year to throw it to them. You throw a perfect pass in a big situation and you drop it. After the drop T.J went and cried on the sidelines, and he should because he knew that the pass was on the money. Boldin was covered all game and Flacco delivers a perfect pass and he drops it. All of the Ravens fans need to take a good look at this season and say, “Is it Flacco?”

There were some controversial calls that went against the Ravens and one was holding penalty on Marcus Smith during Webb’s punt return for a touchdown. Marcus Smith was called for holding when the defender basically flopped. Earlier in the week Trent Dilfer said that he hoped this game didn’t get messed up because of officiating. It was a bad call but the Ravens were only 29 yards away from a touchdown and that’s when Boldin dropped the pass in the end zone. This was a big call, but it didn’t make the Ravens lose. You don’t blame the officials, no matter how bad the call is.

The Ravens have a lot to look at this offseason because of the free agents, the age of their offense and defense. The Ravens have a lot of big free agents including, Ngata, Heap, Yanda, Carr, Wilson, Gaither, Washington, and many more. They need to look into who they need to keep in order for them to get over the hump. They can’t let Ngata go and they need corners so expect at least two of them to stay. On the age aspect of their players, you don’t know what Ed Reed, Ray Lewis, Derrick Mason, and even Matt Birk are going to do. These guys are going to take a hard look at this team and see if they are a Super Bowl caliber team; because that is the only way I see them staying here. If there is a lockout, I don’t know if any would come back but the one who probably will is Ray Lewis. The Ravens need to look into getting someone who can lead that defense when Ray is gone because the time will come when it happens.

In conclusion to the Steelers and Ravens game, you have to tip your hats to the Steelers. They made a great comeback and they never let up. Their offensive line is banged up but they are a good enough team to win with different combinations. They will be a tough game for either the Pats or the Jets and they were the better team on that Saturday.

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Ranking The 53: A Bye Week Look at Ravens Roster

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Ranking The 53: A Bye Week Look at Ravens Roster

Posted on 27 October 2010 by Glenn Clark

As you’ll remember, I spent most of Training Camp ranking the players on the Baltimore Ravens roster as we tried to determine the Top 53 that would make the final roster.

As we’ve reached the team’s Bye Week, I thought I’d use a similar format (as opposed to a Report Card format) to grade the way the 53 men currently on the team’s roster have played thus far this season. Here’s my list…

53. OL Scott Kooistra-He hasn’t seen the field and he hasn’t been around very long. I’m not sure where else he could be ranked.

52. DT Arthur Jones-The team isn’t dissatisfied with the rookie DT from Syracuse. The issue for Jones is that the Ravens are so deep on the interior of their D-Line that they haven’t been able to get Jones on the field yet. Until then, he won’t find himself any higher on the list.

51. WR Donte’ Stallworth-Stallworth’s broken foot has kept him entirely out of game action thus far, and he only returned to practice last week. The team expects him to be on the field Week 9 against the Miami Dolphins at M&T Bank Stadium. Once he gets out there, we can see where he’d rank on this list.

50. QB Marc Bulger-If Marc Bulger never sees the field and stays somewhere near #50, GM Ozzie Newsome and Head Coach John Harbaugh will be thrilled-as it means nothing will have gone wrong with the team’s quarterback. This is exactly where they want him.

49. DT Lamar Divens-It seems like Lamar Divens will always be the first name listed when the “who could you cut to make room for…” conversations happen. That being said, he hasn’t been cut yet this season, and has even seen the field at times. He’s a really good player-even if it hasn’t quite been evident yet this season.

48. TE Dennis Pitta-His offensive contributions (1 catch, 1 yard) have been next to nothing, but Pitta has been a solid special teams contributor and has only been inactive for one game. No one in Owings Mills is unhappy with their rookie TE from BYU thus far.

47. CB Cary Williams-He’s been more of a Special Teams contributor than he’s been a corner thus far this season-and he hasn’t been perfect. His block in the back penalty against the New England Patriots was certainly frustrating; and Harbaugh made it known. Williams’ size (6’1″) could make him helpful at CB at some point, but the team has to trust him there.

46. OT Oniel Cousins-The team didn’t really hide from the fact that they were disappointed by how long it took Oniel to get back on the field after a preseason concussion. At this point, I don’t think they can hide from the disappointment in his on-field performance; as he’s struggled to get playing time at all.

45. LB Prescott Burgess-He’s remained a steady player on Special Teams, and that’s what the team has wanted from him. It’s easy to be down a player who doesn’t contribute at his natural position, but Burgess has been solid.

44. LS Morgan Cox-Matt Katula’s struggles a season ago were at least somewhat to blame for early season misses from then kicker Steve Hauschka. I think that’s why it wasn’t terribly surprising when ST Coordinator Jerry Rosburg and company decided to go with Cox this season. That being said, Cox has been low on a few FG snaps, and has gotten some help from holder Sam Koch. He needs to be a bit steadier.

43. WR Marcus Smith-Smith is another player whose contributions have been limited to Special Teams thus far, which means his mistakes are often much more memorable than anything he does well. He had a tough day in Foxborough, but he wasn’t the only one.

42. DT Terrence Cody-What a frustrating player Terrence Cody has been this season. There’s moments where it looks like things are clicking for him, but there have been many more moments (in the 4 games where he’s played) where he looked absolutely lost. He didn’t record his first NFL tackle until the Week 7 win over the Buffalo Bills.

41. LB Jason Phillips-Phillips may have earned a couple of extra spots on the list simply thanks to the hit he and Edgar Jones delivered to Denver Broncos WR/KR Demaryius Thomas (see below) in Week 5. Phillips is in a tough spot, as the Ravens are deep at ILB. That being said, he’s made an impact in the opportunities he’s had-which is exactly what the team wanted.

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40. DE Paul Kruger-I’m placing Paul Kruger in the top 40, but I’ll note that he’s played in only two games thus far this season-two he may have never played in had the team not released Trevor Pryce earlier in the year. His ability to play in the wedge has helped get him on the field, but the kick return hasn’t exactly been great with or without him.

39. LB Brendon Ayanbadejo-Ayanbadejo is another player who I’m squeezing into the Top 40 despite limited work. It looks like Ayanbadejo is going to be able to continue to be an effective player on Special Teams; but his ability to help is pass coverage will determine where he eventually ends up on this list.

38. RB/KR Jalen Parmele-It’s easy to look at the struggles Parmele has had over the last two weeks and be down on his season; but it cannot be dismissed that he’s averaged over 20 yards per return this season. The Ravens have to figure out what’s going wrong with their kick return. My guess is that they’ll find out that the returner isn’t the biggest problem. My second guess is that it won’t mean Parmele will be the returner moving forward anyway.

37. S Ken Hamlin-When the Ravens released Hamlin to make room for Cary Williams earlier in the season, it looked like a confirmation that Hamlin was simply holding Ed Reed’s roster spot. About a week later we found out that wasn’t exactly the case. Hamlin has been effective on Special Teams and has offered something to Greg Mattison’s defense as well-at least until he was left inactive for the first time Week 7. That could be bad news moving forward for Hamlin.

36. WR David Reed-After looking like he might not be able to play Special Teams at all, Reed developed into a very trustworthy gunner for the Ravens over the first few weeks of the season and has taken more snaps as a returner during practice as the season has gone on. That being said, it is interesting to note that Reed was held out of Sunday’s game against the Bills. It had at least SOMETHING to do with a thigh injury, but it will be interesting to see if it was the injury ONLY, or if the injury was just part of it.

35. TE Ed Dickson-Dickson is an interesting case. In the game against the Broncos, his 58 yard 1st quarter catch was eye-opening. His 6’4″ frame clearly makes him an attractive downfield and jump-ball target. But his holding penalty later in the game was an example of exactly why OC Cam Cameron may not fully trust him enough to keep him on the field. My guess is that Dickson is headed towards some level of a breakout performance.

34. LB Tavares Gooden-I get the feeling that I could be showing a little bit too much fairness to Gooden, who was adequate in the two games he played before injuring his shoulder. He probably hasn’t done enough to justify the position, but I’ll keep him here for now. How he bounces back from another setback (and whether or not he can return in Week 9) could have a lot to do with his future in Charm City.

33. CB Josh Wilson-This is really tricky as well. Wilson has by no means been a liability on the field; but he’s done little to prove himself thus far. He’s missed two games (a healthy inactive when the Ravens played the Pittsburgh Steelers at Heinz Field; an ankle injury kept him out of the loss to the Pats at Gillette Stadium), and he hasn’t been perfect as a returner. But when Secondary coach Chuck Pagano need an answer late against the Bills, Wilson stepped up.

32. WR TJ Houshmandzadeh-Truth be told, I’m completely befuddled by TJ Houshmandzadeh’s short tenure in Baltimore. I don’t think he’s been misused, I don’t think Joe Flacco has failed to look for him or get him the ball, I don’t think he’s necessarily been awful in doing his own job (although I absolutely think he’s given half efforts to catch the ball-which was abundantly evident when the Ravens played the Cincinnati Bengals at Paul Brown Stadium). I’m not sure what Houshmandzadeh’s role is moving forward as Stallworth returns. No matter what it is, his catch to beat the Steelers will never be forgotten.

31. OL Tony Moll-Moll has shown himself to be a particularly reliable reserve on the O-Line; he’s been the team’s top reserve this season. In fact, he was on the field at RT when the Ravens put together their final TD drive to get the first win of the Harbaugh era in the Steel City.

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30. DT Brandon McKinney-McKinney has quickly become the team’s top reserve along the D-Line, and has played VERY well he’s seen the field this season. He’s probably better as a NT or as an interior tackle in a 4-3 defense, but he’s been outstanding filling multiple roles for DL coach Clarence Brooks.

29. S Haruki Nakamura-Nakamura’s playing time has decreased since the start of the season, but it’s not because he’s performed poorly. Nakamura was both the 3rd safety and the nickel corner in the Ravens’ season opening Monday Night Football win over the New York Jets, but the improved health of the team has limited his role. His play has been effective throughout the season no matter his role.

28. CB Lardarius Webb-After missing the season opener at New Meadowlands Stadium, Webb has been up and down in the six games he’s played. At times he’s been spectacular, including two big pass breakups in the win over the Steelers. At other times he’s been less than spectacular, including the loss to the Bills. Webb stepped in for Zbikowski at PR against the Bills as well, but is unlikely to remain a long term option there.

27. DL Cory Redding-This is somewhat of a tricky judgment as well. Redding has played well, but was supposed to be able to get off the field in obvious passing situations this season to allow for a better rush end option. Sadly, the Ravens don’t have a better rush end option. Redding has just one sack on the season, and that number is unlikely to get much bigger.

26. LB Dannell Ellerbe-If Dannell Ellerbe didn’t have to play in pass coverage, he probably would find himself in the Top 15. Of course, there are a number of LB’s in the NFL who could say the same thing. Ellerbe has been solid but not spectacular, and has not exactly shown himself to be an “answer” for the Ravens at JACK LB.

25. OL Chris Chester-The Ravens would certainly prefer to have Chester coming off the bench and taking snaps at multiple positions; but the back injury to Jared Gaither has forced him into a starting role at RG. Chester hasn’t been perfect, but at no point has he been any sort of liability.

24. LB Jameel McClain-McClain has thus far been the most consistent answer at JACK LB, but he probably hasn’t solidified the position the way the team may have hoped he would. McClain has been solid, but has not been able to make too many plays in the backfield. Opponents have also been surprisingly able to run the ball with effectiveness (none more than Cleveland Browns RB Peyton Hillis), which has to fall on the entire group-including McClain.

23. OL Marshal Yanda-No one has forgotten about Jared Gaither in Baltimore, but Marshal Yanda has solidified the RT position after a few early season struggles. Yanda is still better served playing at the Guard position, but he’s shown his athleticism and ability to both pass block and run block at the RT position.

22. S Ed Reed-There’s little argument for me ranking a player who has seen the field for just one game this high; but the argument exists. Of course, it is a very short argument-based solely on the fact that despite playing in just one game, Reed leads the team in interceptions. He looked like the Ed Reed of old against the Bills, giving the organization every reason to believe he’ll continue to play at a high level.

21. RB Willis McGahee-We might never TRULY know why McGahee didn’t see the field against the Pats, but he’s been very good every other time he’s seen the field. McGahee has been a solid back in both short yardage and goal line situations, is an effective blocker, and can take consecutive handoffs. If for some reason Ray Rice were to get hurt, the Ravens would be fine at RB.

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20. C Matt Birk-Birk might not play at a Pro Bowl level necessarily anymore, but he’s still very good. He had some struggles early on this season, but he’s played very well in recent weeks. The Ravens may not have a center of the future on the roster necessarily, but they’re still just fine right now.

19. DT Kelly Gregg-Gregg has been just as steady as always this season; tallying 30 tackles and taking on double teams the same way he’s done since his breakout year in 2002. The only potential knock on Gregg has been a lack of plays made in the backfield.

18. S/PR Tom Zbikowski-The Ravens have been very happy with the play they’ve received from Zbikowski this season-especially while Reed missed the first six weeks of the season. Fans haven’t been thrilled with Zbikowski as punt returner-but since inexplicably running the ball backwards in East Rutherford, he’s been solid in that role as well. Zbikowski missed Game 7 with a bruised heel, but isn’t expected to be out for an extended period of time.

17. S Dawan Landry-I feel like we keep getting back to the Buffalo game with Ravens defenders-but that tends to be what happens when a team gives up 34 points at home. Landry had been very solid until that game however, and has 52 tackles through seven games this season.

16. CB Chris Carr-The best thing to happen to the Ravens in the wake of the Domonique Foxworth injury has been the play of Carr. Carr has been particularly steady starting opposite Fabian Washington. The team would probably like to see him improve a bit on the one interception and five pass deflections he’s posted thus far this season.

15. LB Jarret Johnson-The only disappointment with Johnson this season has been his lack of involvement in the pass rush. He’s tallied just half a sack thus far to go with 28 tackles. He’s been good, he’s just not quite played to the level he played at a season ago when he compiled six sacks.

14. K Billy Cundiff-The name Shayne Graham has LONG been forgotten at 1 Winning Drive. Cundiff has been incredible on kickoffs, tallying 18 touchbacks this season. He had entered the season with just 11 touchbacks for his CAREER. Cundiff is also 10/12 on field goal attempts; with one of the two misses coming in the goofy open end of the stadium at Heinz Field. There really isn’t much more that can be said about Cundiff, he’s been tremendous this season.

13. P Sam Koch-While I’m at it, Koch has been outstanding this season as well. He’s pinned punts inside the 20 yard line 19 times already this season. Some of his yardage numbers are a bit off this season, as the Ravens have had better field position in general this season. Oakland Raiders P Shane Lechler is still probably having a better season; but Koch has to at least be in consideration for a trip to Hawaii.

12. OT Michael Oher-Oher won’t want to hear the name Jermaine Cunningham any time soon, but otherwise he’s avoided a sophomore slump. Oher has answered almost all questions about his ability to play the LT position, even if he isn’t quite Jonathan Ogden just yet. He LOOKS like he’s offsides more than he actually IS offsides, with the only exception being the Patriots game.

11. LB Terrell Suggs-There’s a misconception that T-Sizzle is having a bad season. That’s simply not true. Suggs has played very well at times, and has clearly developed into a very complete all-around LB. The problem is-the Ravens don’t necessarily need an improved all-around LB on the outside. They REALLY need a pass rushing monster, and Suggs (3.5 sacks) just isn’t that guy right now, nor may he ever be again.

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10. G Ben Grubbs-Grubbs has been the team’s most consistent Offensive Lineman thus far this season, and is setting himself up nicely for a potential Pro Bowl trip. As the team’s longest tenured O-Lineman, Grubbs has been significantly important for the team in maintaining continuity in a season where they have been forced to move pieces around.

9. TE Todd Heap-The Ravens thought that drafting two tight ends would help keep Heap fresh by getting him off the field for a handful of snaps every game. They also thought that signing multiple receivers in the offseason would help free up space on the field for Joe Flacco to find Heap. They’ve been right about both things. Heap has still taken a beating this season (thanks in part to Patriots safety Brandon Meriweather), but he’s on pace to have at least his best offensive season since 2006.

8. CB Fabian Washington-Don’t start cursing at your computer screen just yet. I am well aware that Lee Evans treated Washington like Sidney Rice would Frank Walker in the Ravens’ loss to the Bills. However, in the six games before that-Washington was a significant part of why the Ravens had one of the top pass defenses in the NFL (now ranked 8th for the record). Washington’s future standing on this list will of course have everything to do with how he bounces back from what was a dreadful Week 7 performance.

7. WR Derrick Mason-Remember him? Mason might not be on pace for a 1,000 yard season; but when they’ve needed him-he’s been ready to make plays. He was the team’s leading receiver in two very tough road games (at Pittsburgh and at New England), and he caught the only touchdown of the game in the Ravens’ Week 2 loss in the Queen City. Mason is just as reliable as always, and still catches the football…with the exception of the handful of times the team has decided for some goofy reason to try to throw jump balls in the direction of his 5’10″ frame.

6. RB Ray Rice-Fantasy football owners may not be quite as happy with Ray Rice’s performance as I am; but he’s been very good this season. He’s on pace to finish the season with over 1,400 yards of total offense; and should be able to remain fresh the more the Ravens work McGahee into the offense. Rice was expected to be a Top 3 caliber player on this list, but the lack of a breakaway burst appears to be hurting him right now. If that re-appears, he might show himself to be the type of MVP candidate he was a season ago.

5. LB Ray Lewis-Let me get this out of the way. Ray Lewis has not played like the future Hall of Fame LB he is in every game this season. He looked downright human against the Browns. That being said, the season opener on MNF was a vintage performance from one of the greatest defenders in league history, and Lewis locked up the Steelers game with a late interception of Charlie Batch. He tallied 15 tackles in the win over the Bills as well. San Francisco 49ers LB Patrick Willis may be the unquestionable greatest LB in the game today, but Ray Lewis has not fallen terribly far behind.

4. FB Le’Ron McClain-This one may catch a few folks off guard, as the personal foul penalty in Foxborough and the lack of carries probably stick out in the minds of most fans more than anything else, but Le’Ron McClain is playing as well at his position as almost anyone else on the Ravens roster this season. RB Coach Wilbert Montgomery graded McClain’s performance against the Browns as the best by a Ravens player this season, and Offensive Coordinator Cam Cameron told me that in terms of the total package-blocking, rushing and pass catching-McClain was absolutely the best fullback in not only the AFC-but the entire NFL.

3. QB Joe Flacco-If it weren’t for the dud in Cincy, Flacco may be #1 on the list. Unfortunately, the game in Cincy still counts. Flacco has been outstanding for the better part of the season-despite strange criticism from fans and a handful of analysts alike. He’s on pace for another season with 3,000+ yards and 20+ touchdowns and has limited his turnovers in games BESIDES Cincinnati. Flacco still needs to figure out that Ray Rice is just 5’7″; which has to be the most frustrating part of his game at this point.

2. WR Anquan Boldin-Anquan Boldin has been everything the Ravens had hoped he would be and more. He’s been a reliable target, he’s shown the type of toughness that originally made him a star with the Arizona Cardinals, and at times (the Browns game sticks out) he’s even added an explosive level to his game. He unfortunately doesn’t get to matchup against Eric Wright every week; but he’s on pace for 1,000+ yards and double digit TD’s no matter who he’s up against. Some fans in Baltimore who weren’t familiar with his game thought the Ravens were getting Larry Fitzgerald; but for those who knew what type of player Boldin was-he’s been ABSOLUTELY as good as advertised if not better.

1. DT Haloti Ngata-There is simply no better player on this football team right now than Haloti Ngata. There’s almost no argument any longer about who the best interior D-Lineman is in the NFL either. The only unfortunate part about the season for Ngata has been the fact that the lack of a rush end has forced the Ravens to send Ngata outside and hope he could get to the quarterback. He’s capable, but it’s by no means where he is best used. When he does get in the backfield, there’s no quarterback (or other player at any position) that’s happy to see him.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ttqIWOqvGSM[/youtube]

-G

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Live From Owings Mills: Zbikowski OUT, Gooden Returns

Posted on 22 October 2010 by Glenn Clark

OWINGS MILLS, Md. — The Baltimore Ravens (4-2) held their final open practice Friday at 1 Winning Drive before Sunday’s contest with the Buffalo Bills (0-5) at M&T Bank Stadium.

Safety Tom Zbikowski (foot) did not participate in practice for a 3rd straight day, he suffered a bruised heel in the team’s Week 6 loss to the New England Patriots in Foxborough; he will not play Sunday against the Bills. With Zbikowski out, the Ravens’ picture at safety is cloudy. Regular starter Ed Reed has not yet been activated from the Physically Unable to Perform (PUP) list, and may not be activated before the game. The team has until 4pm Saturday to clear a roster spot should they decide to activate Reed and/or LB Brendon Ayanbadejo, who each practiced for a third straight day Friday.

Should Reed not be available Sunday, Haruki Nakamura would be expected to start at free safety opposite Dawan Landry with Ken Hamlin backing up both positions.

Neither Reed nor Ayanbadejo would confirm whether or not they would play Sunday, and the same can be said of Harbaugh. Harbaugh told reporters Reed “had a really good week of practice”, but said he’d probably be “cautious” in making a decision regarding Reed.

Harbaugh said the team was “feeling pretty good” about both Reed and Ayanbadejo. “It’s just a matter of how much they can go, we don’t want to have any setbacks.” Ayanbadejo said he might not be 100 percent ready to get back on the field. “Ideally I’d like more time, but we have a bye coming up the next week so I’ll have plenty of time to recover.” Ayanbadejo added “I think it’s a great opportunity for me to get in the game. The goal would be to finish the game and be ready for a good week of practice after we beat the Bills.”

MORE FROM PRACTICE: WR Donte’ Stallworth (foot) practiced for a second straight day, but he has been ruled out of Sunday’s game. LB Tavares Gooden (shoulder) returned to practice for the first time since injuring his shoulder in the team’s Week 2 loss to the Cincinnati Bengals at Paul Brown Stadium, but Gooden has also already been ruled out of Sunday’s game. OT Jared Gaither (back) has also been ruled out of Sunday’s game and has not returned to practice.

Harbaugh said it was “fair to say” that the team’s Week 9 game against the Miami Dolphins in Charm City could be a target date for both Stallworth and Gooden to return. Gooden wasn’t ready to confirm he could return for Week 9, saying only that “it would be fun” to return in time to play the Fins.

TE Todd Heap (neck) and WR David Reed (thigh) were listed as questionable for Sunday’s game on Friday’s injury report.

OL Tony Moll (eye) returned to practice after not participating Thursday, he’s probable to play Sunday. Also probable for Sunday’s game are LB Jarret Johnson (back), LB Edgar Jones (thigh), DE Paul Kruger (knee), WR Derrick Mason (ankle/finger), RB Ray Rice (ankle), WR Marcus Smith (back) and CB Josh Wilson (thigh).

For the Bills, OT Cornell Green (knee) and CB Terrence McGee (back) have been ruled out of Sunday’s game. LB Keith Ellison (knee) and NT Kyle Williams (ankle) are questionable to play. S Jon Corto (wrist), LB Arthur Moats (elbow), TE Shawn Nelson (groin) and S Bryan Scott (knee) have all been listed as probable to play.

HEAP BREAKS SILENCE ON MERIWEATHER HIT
: Heap spoke Friday about the helmet to helmet hit he was on the receiving side of from Pats safety Brandon Meriweather in the team’s Week 6 loss at Gillette Stadium. Heap had declined to comment about the hit following the game and was not available to the media Wednesday or Thursday.

“It is what it was” said Heap. “I think he’ll learn his lesson by that. It’s not my place to enforce anything, but at the same time, looking back on it and seeing the hit-it was something that I think could have been avoided.”

Meriweather was flagged for a 15 yard personal foul penalty and fined $50,000 for the hit by the NFL.

“I don’t think he meant anything by it, I think he was trying to play football-but he made a bad decision” Heap added. “It’s over and done with, we can put it behind us.”

NOTES: Hear from Harbaugh, Ayanbadejo, Gooden and Heap NOW in the BuyAToyota.com Audio Vault here at WNST.net……Edgar Jones joined Drew Forrester Friday on “The Morning Reaction” on AM1570 WNST, you can hear that chat in the BuyAToyota.com Audio Vault here at WNST.net……Weather.com/The Weather Channel says Sunday’s weather is expected to be 73 degrees and mostly cloudy. There is no rain currently in the forecast……Pete Morelli’s crew will officiate Sunday’s game……The Ravens will hold a walkthrough Saturday morning prior to Sunday’s game. Saturday’s walkthrough is closed to the media……Former CB Chris McAlister will not attend Sunday’s 10 Year Anniversary celebration of the Super Bowl XXXV winning team. McAlister originally committed to attending the event, but later told the team he had a schedule conflict. McAlister left Baltimore on uneasy terms with Harbaugh

-G

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Live From Owings Mills: Stallworth Returns to Practice

Posted on 21 October 2010 by Glenn Clark

OWINGS MILLS, Md. — The Baltimore Ravens (4-2) returned to work Thursday at 1 Winning Drive, continuing preparations for Sunday’s battle with the Buffalo Bills (0-5) at M&T Bank Stadium.

WR Donte’ Stallworth returned to practice Thursday for the first time since breaking his foot in an Aug. 28 preseason game against the New York Giants. Stallworth has already been ruled out of Sunday’s game against the Bills-but could return following the bye in time to face the Miami Dolphins Week 9. Stallworth is expected to be involved both at receiver and at punt returner.

TE Todd Heap (neck) also returned to practice Thursday after missing Wednesday, he was listed as a limited participant. Also listed as limited was WR Marcus Smith (back). S Tom Zbikowski (foot) missed a second straight day of practice. OL Tony Moll (eye) did not participate in practice Thursday either.

FB Le’Ron McClain did not appear as though he would face contact Thursday, he dealt with knee and shoulder injuries last week but was not listed on Thursday’s injury report. Listed as full participants Thursday were LB Jarret Johnson (back), LB Edgar Jones (thigh), DE Paul Kruger (knee), WR Derrick Mason (ankle/finger), S Haruki Nakamura (back), RB Ray Rice (ankle) and CB Josh Wilson (thigh).

OT Jared Gaither (back) and LB Tavares Gooden (shoulder) have also been ruled out for Sunday’s game, neither player was on the field Thursday.

For the Bills, OT Cornell Green (knee), CB Terrence McGee (back) and NT Kyle Williams (ankle) did not participate in practice Thursday. LB’s Keith Ellison (knee) and Arthur Moats (elbow) were limited participants while TE Shawn Nelson (groin) and S Bryan Scott (knee) were full participants.

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