Tag Archive | "philadelphia"

Cary Williams latest defensive player to leave Ravens’ nest

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Cary Williams latest defensive player to leave Ravens’ nest

Posted on 14 March 2013 by Luke Jones

An exit that appeared all but inevitable became official Thursday afternoon as cornerback Cary Williams became the latest defensive player to part ways with the Ravens.

Williams agreed to a three-year deal with the Philadelphia Eagles and multiple reports are saying the deal is worth $17 million with $10.5 million guaranteed. This trumps the three-year, $15 million deal the Ravens offered him last season, which is an impressive feat given the deep market for cornerbacks this offseason.

Originally a seventh-round pick out of Washburn College by the Tennessee Titans in 2008, the 28-year-old worked his way up the ranks, beginning as a practice-squad player and special-teams player with the Titans before eventually winding up in Baltimore as a two-year starter at cornerback. Williams started all 16 games in each of the last two years and collected four interceptions and 75 tackles in 2012.

“It was a great opportunity coming from humble beginnings,” Williams told AM 1570 shortly after the announcement was made. “I’m thankful for the opportunity and given a chance. I’m just looking to continue getting better…I’m going to do whatever it takes to win.”

At 6-foot-1, Williams possesses optimum size for a cornerback but was often criticized for playing with too much cushion in coverage against receivers. Still, Williams stepped up his play considerably following the season-ending ACL injury to Lardarius Webb in October. The cornerback also ended any slim chance of a New England comeback in the AFC Championship with an interception of Tom Brady in the end zone late in the fourth quarter.

The offer made by general manager Ozzie Newsome last offseason was no longer on the table as the Ravens and Williams were expected to part ways. Baltimore will lean on a returning Lardarius Webb as well as Corey Graham, Jimmy Smith, and Chykie Brown to top the depth chart.

The Eagles are trying to rebuild their secondary after a disastrous 4-12 season that resulted in the departure of longtime head coach Andy Reid as well as starting cornerbacks Nnamdi Asomugha and Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie. Williams holds no bitterness toward the Ravens despite expressing strong wishes to remain with the organization following their win in Super Boxl XLVII.

“I don’t take it personally,” Williams said. “I understand what they’re trying to do, and I don’t think Baltimore is hurting at the cornerback position.”

Williams becomes the fifth defensive starter to depart the Ravens’ championship unit, joining the retiring Ray Lewis as well as Bernard Pollard, Paul Kruger, and Dannell Ellerbe. Baltimore could still see two more defenders depart as Reed and Ma’ake Kemoeatu are unrestricted free agents.

The cornerback hopes to bring his winning pedigree to Philadelphia but won’t forget his four seasons in Baltimore and everything the Ravens accomplished.

“It’s a ‘Band of Brothers,’” Williams said. “It was a hell of a run to make a Super Bowl chase. We did that, and we accomplished what we wanted to do.”

 

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Ovechkin Is Still The Most Exciting Player in the NHL When On

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Ovechkin Is Still The Most Exciting Player in the NHL When On

Posted on 23 February 2013 by Ed Frankovic

Wow, that was one fun afternoon for the Washington Capitals and their fans.

In vintage 2008 form, Alexander Ovechkin took over Saturday’s matinee with the New Jersey Devils exploding for three goals and an assist in a 5-1 Caps victory. The Gr8 has been playing extremely hard over the last 13 games but until today’s tilt, he wasn’t getting the results on the scoresheet to correspond to that effort. That all changed in this one, perhaps having fiancee Maria Kirilenko in attendance for the first time all season brought him good luck?

Whatever the case, when Ovechkin is on, in my book he is still the most exciting and explosive player in the NHL. He may not be the MVP, like he was in 2008 and 2009, but when he is skating, shooting, and hitting he can still lift you right out of your seat. Or as the NHL Network’s Craig Button once said several years ago after attending a Caps game for free, “Where do I pay for the performance I just watched?!”

Certainly the fans in attendance got their money’s worth and more today, thanks to Ovechkin along with many of his teammates. It was easily the best game this struggling club has played all year and they finally knocked off a team in the top eight spots of the conference (now 1-8-1, h/t @SkyKerstein).

The Caps stayed out of the box yielding only three Devils power plays and a penalty shot. Two of those infractions were of the delay of game variety, something that Coach Adam Oates has to address going forward. But Washington scored shorthanded on Eric Fehr’s tally in the third period and the Caps power play clicked two of the three times it was on the ice. Anytime you go +3 in the special teams department, chances are pretty good you will win via a lopsided margin.

It was pretty much a complete performance and Braden Holtby had another superb game in the cage, including thwarting a Steve Bernier penalty shot in the middle frame. #70 is now 4-2 and has a .9255 save percentage in his last six games. As I said a week ago Friday on the air on WNST 1570 AM Baltimore in my session with Thyrl Nelson, host of the MobTown Sports Beat, I am a big believer in Holtby and his abilities.

Other standout performances on Saturday came from Matt Hendricks, whose pass to Ovechkin on his second goal was a thing of beauty and started the third period onslaught; Karl Alzner, who was superb at both ends of the rink; and Mike Ribeiro and Nicklas Backstrom for the outstanding passes and center ice play.

Still, this one was all about Ovechkin and his explosive performance. The Gr8 took over this contest like he did so many times from 2008 to 2010 when Washington was dominating the Eastern Conference. The Caps, who don’t have nearly the talent on their roster now as they did during that period, will need a lot more of these type of outputs to turn this 6-10-1 season into a “2008-like” magical run.

But that is a topic for another day. So for the rest of Saturday, Sunday, and Monday just enjoy the victory and rewatch the highlights of the Gr8 show, because games and individual performances like the one Ovechkin displayed today are what makes watching sports a special experience.

Notes: Mike Green missed his 3rd straight game due to a groin injury. Tom Poti took his place in the lineup…Washington won the faceoff battle 36-25, the 6th straight game the Caps have done that. Coach Adam Oates was arguably the best faceoff man ever so his influence appears to be rubbing off on the center ice men…the Caps next play on Tuesday at home against the Carolina Hurricanes before visiting the Philadelphia Flyers on Wednesday night.

 

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Top 10 Baseball Distractions

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Top 10 Baseball Distractions

Posted on 31 December 2012 by Glenn Clark

Honorable Mention: Boxing-Friday Night Fights: Rances Barthelemy vs. Arash Usmanee (Friday 10pm from Miami live on ESPN2); Women’s College Basketball: Florida State @ Maryland (Sunday 1:30pm from Comcast Center live on ESPNU); High School Basketball: Perry Hall @ Dundalk (Wednesday 6:30pm), Perry Hall @ Chesapeake-Anne Arundel County (Friday 7pm)

10. Badfish (Friday 8pm Rams Head Live); Ryan Cabrera/Teddy Geiger (Sunday 8pm Baltimore Soundstage); Wale (Tuesday 8pm Fillmore Silver Spring); Delta Rae (Saturday 7pm 9:30 Club); Pat McGee Band (Friday & Saturday 7:30pm Birchmere)

I wish I could say I wasn’t familiar with Ryan Cabrera. I wish more that I could say I didn’t enjoy this song.

Wale is a Redskins fan. As much as that bothers me, I still enjoy this tune.

Delta Rae likely the best band you weren’t listening to in 2012…

I genuinely enjoy Pat McGee.

9. “Looper” available on Blu-Ray/DVD (Tuesday); “Texas Chainsaw 3D” out in theaters (Friday); Cirque Eloize iD (Saturday 8pm Sunday 1pm & 5:30pm Modell Performing Arts Center at The Lyric); Glenn Clark’s New Year’s Day plans (Tuesday parts unknown)

Honestly, you really don’t want to know what I do to celebrate the New Year. I’ll give you a hint. It doesn’t involve pants.

(Continued on Page 2…)

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Navy, Army square off for 113th time Saturday in Philly

Posted on 07 December 2012 by WNST Staff

Game 12 Army (2-9) vs. Navy (7-4)
Date and Kickoff Dec. 8, 2012 at 3:00 pm ET
Location Philadelphia, Pa. | Lincoln Financial Field (68,532)
Television CBS Sports
TV Talent Verne Lundquist (play-by-play), Gary Danielson (analyst), Tracy Wolfson (sideline)


Setting the Stage

• Army and Navy will meet on the gridiron for the 113th time when they square off on Saturday at Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia.  Kickoff is set for 3:10 pm Eastern.
• The winner of the Army-Navy game will take home the Commander-In-Chief’s Trophy, which is presented annually to the winner of the football competition among the three major Service Academies and is named in honor of the President of the United States.  Navy has won the trophy 12 times, while Army has claimed it six times.  This year’s game marks the first time since 2005 that the trophy was on the line in the Army-Navy game and just the sixth time since the trophy’s inception in 1972.
• Navy is 2-3 all-time against Army when the two teams met with the trophy on the line.
• Navy enters the contest looking to defeat Army for a series-record 11th straight year.  Before Navy started this historical run, the longest winning streak in the series, which was first played in 1890, was five games (by both teams).  Navy has outscored Army, 349-112 (34.9-11.2) during its 10-game winning streak.
• The Mids have won 13 of the last 15 games against Army dating back to 1997.
• Navy head football coach Ken Niumatalolo is trying to become just the third coach in school history to start his coaching career at Navy with a 5-0 record against Army.  Paul Johnson turned in a 6-0 mark against West Point (2002-07), while Wayne Hardin won his first five games (1959-63) before losing.
• CBS Sports Network will air the Army-Navy Special Presented by USAA on Friday at 7:00 pm ET as the network looks ahead to Saturday’s game.
•    CBS Sports Network will air two special editions of INSIDE COLLEGE FOOTBALL on Saturday prior to the game.  INSIDE COLLEGE FOOTBALL ARMY-NAVY MARCH ON presented by USAA (12:00-1:30 pm, ET) and INSIDE COLLEGE FOOTBALL ARMY-NAVY TAILGATE presented by USAA (1:30-2:30 pm, ET).  Hosts Adam Zucker and Brent Stover will be joined at Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia by analysts Randy Cross, Brian Jones and Ron Zook, as well as special guests from the academies. The MARCH ON SPECIAL features the March-On of the Brigade of Midshipmen and Corps of Cadets as they march onto Lincoln Financial Field, while ARMY-NAVY TAILGATE previews the game with in-depth news and analysis, as well as interviews from both head coaches.
• CBS Sports will start their coverage at 2:30 pm with a 30-minute pregame show followed by the 113th playing of the Army-Navy game at 3:00 pm with Verne Lundquist, Gary Danielson and Tracy Wolfson calling the action.
• Dial Global Radio Network has the national radio rights with John Tautges, Terry Donahue and Lewis Johnson calling the action.  Dial Global will also air a one-hour pregame show starting at 2:00 pm.

Game Day Festivities
• The March-On of the Brigade of Midshipmen will take place at 12:16 pm and the March-On of the Corps of Cadets will take place at 12:46 pm.
• The Service Academy exchange of Cadets and Midshipmen will take place at 2:46 pm, while the Golden Knights and Leapfrogs will jump at 2:50 pm.
• The National Anthem will be sung by the Army Glee Club at 3:00 pm.
•    Army will take the field with an Army fly-over at 3:06 pm, while Navy will take the field with a Navy fly-over at 3:07 pm.

Scouting Army
•    The 2-9 Black Knights destroyed Air Force (41-21) and defeated Boston College (34-31) of the ACC while suffering losses to San Diego State (42-7), Northern Illinois (41-40), Wake Forest (49-37), Stony Brook (23-3), Kent State (31-17), Eastern Michigan (48-38), Ball State (30-22), Rutgers (28-7) and Temple (63-32).
•    Army is the No. 1 rushing team in the country, averaging 369.8 yards per game.
• Senior quarterback Trent Steelman is 26th in the country in rushing, averaging 104.7 yards per game, and 22nd in scoring, averaging 9.1 points per game.  He has rushed for a school-record 1,152 yards and a program-record 44-career rushing touchdowns, passing Army Heisman Trophy winner Glenn Davis.
• Slot back Raymond Maples has rushed for 1,059 yards and two touchdowns on 196 carries and ranks 36th in the nation in rushing.
•    Linebacker Geoffrey Bacon has had a phenomenal season, ranking seventh in the country with 11.1 tackles per game.
• Linebacker Nate Combs is 25th in the country in tackles for a loss, averaging 1.3 per game.

The Last Time … 
Navy 27, Army 21    Dec. 10, 2011 | Landover, MD.
•     Senior Jon Teague kicked fourth quarter field goals of 23 and 44 yards as Navy defeated Army, 27-21, for a record 10th consecutive year, in front of a crowd of 80,789 at FedExField that included President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe Biden.
• Navy jumped out to a 14-0 lead thanks to a pair of Army fumbles.  Army’s Raymond Maples fumbled a pitch and senior defensive end Jabaree Tuani recovered the ball at the Army 26 on the Black Knights’ second possession of the game.
• Six plays later, senior quarterback Kriss Proctor scored from the four to give Navy the early advantage.
• After the two teams traded punts, Army’s Jared Hassin was stripped of the ball by Tuani and junior outside linebackerBrye French recovered the ball at the Navy 45.
• On the first play after the Army fumble, Proctor scrambled for 32 yards down to the Army 23.  Six plays after that, Proctor executed a perfect double option on third-and-eight from the 10 pitching to senior fullback Alexander Teich for the touchdown.
• Army, however, would come right back and cut Navy’s lead in half, as quarterback Trent Steelman directed an eight-play, 67-yard drive that was capped off by a 34-yard touchdown run to make the score 14-7.
• After the Navy offense went three and out, Army was back in business moving 63 yards in seven plays with Malcolm Brown diving over from the three to tie the game at 14 with just 49 seconds left in the first half.
• Navy took the opening kickoff of the second half and moved 48 yards in five plays to retake the lead at 21-14.  After Teich’s 48-yard kickoff return put the Navy offense in business at the Army 48, backup fullback Delvin Diggs had back-to-back carries that picked up 18 yards down to the Army 30.  Junior slot back Gee Gee Greene ran for 20 more yards on first down and, after a Teich eight-yard run down to the two, Proctor scored his second TD of the day.
• Once again Army would come right back, marching right through the Navy defense in six plays with Steelman hitting Brown with a 25-yard touchdown pass on third-and-seven to tie the game at 21.
• The Mids would take advantage of an Army punt by driving 75 yards in 18 plays with Teague capping the drive with a 23-yard field goal to give Navy a three-point lead.  The Mids were forced to kick a field goal after lineman Graham Vickers jumped on third-and-goal from the Army 1.
• On the ensuing kickoff, freshman Noah Copeland forced Army returner Scott Williams to cough up the ball and Navy freshman Jordan Drake recovered it at the Army 27.  Teague would turn the Army miscue into points with a 44-yard field goal to give Navy a 27-21 lead.
• Army got the ball back and quickly moved down the field and had the ball first-and-10 at the Navy 28 when the Navy defense came up big.
• After Brown rushed for four yards on first down, Army tried to catch Navy napping by throwing the ball but Steelman was dropped by junior linebacker Matt Warrick for a loss of five yards.  Steelman would pick up four yards on third down as Tra’ves Bush came flying up from the safety position to make the stop and then on fourth down Steelman was sacked for a loss of one by Warrick to give the ball back to the Midshipmen with 4:31 left.

The Commander-In-Chief’s Trophy
• The Commander-In-Chief’s Trophy is presented annually to the winner of the football competition among the three major service academies — Army, Navy and Air Force — and is named in honor of the President of the United States.
• Navy has dominated of late, winning the trophy a Service Academy record seven-consecutive years from 2003-09 and winning a Service Academy record 15 straight games against Air Force and Army in the process.  Air Force has won the trophy each of the last two years.
• Navy has won the trophy a total of 12 times: 1973, 1975, 1978, 1979, 1981, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008 and 2009.
• When there is no clear-cut winner,  the trophy remains with the winner of the previous year’s competition.  • The three-sided trophy stands two-and-a-half-feet tall and is engraved with the academy seals.  Reproductions of the three mascots — the Army Mule, the Navy Goat and the Air Force Falcon — are ensconced on the respective sides of this bauble.  The trophy is sponsored by the West Point Association of Graduates, the Naval Academy Alumni Association and the Air Force Association of Graduates.
• The year in which the trophy is won is engraved on AA plate gracing the respective academy’s side of the trophy.

Service Academy Dominance
• Navy has amassed a 82-44 (.651) overall record in the last 10 years, while Air Force is 68-55 (.553) and Army is 32-87 (.269).  The Mids are 17-2 against the other two Service Academies since 2003.

Dominant Era in Army-Navy History
• Navy’s 27-21 victory over Army in 2011 was its 10th consecutive win over the Black Knights, the longest streak in series history by either team.
• The Mids have won those 10 in a row against Army in dominant fashion, outscoring the Black Knights, 349-112 (34.9-11.2).

Our Nation’s Future Leaders
• Navy’s 28 seniors received their Service Assignments on Wednesday, November 28. Graduates of the Naval Academy serve a minimum of five years in the Navy or Marine Corps, while pilots serve eight years upon earning their wings.
•    18 seniors will be commissioned Ensigns in the United States Navy, while 10 will be commissioned 2nd Lieutenants in the Marine Corps.

Service Assignments for the Class of 2013
Andrew Barker, Surface Warfare
Matt Brewer, Marine Corps Ground
Tra’ves Bush, Surface Warfare
Josh Cabral, Naval Flight Officer
Evan Campbell, Marine Corps Ground
Prentice Christian, Surface Warfare
Billy Coats, Marine Corps Pilot
Matt Couch, Supply Corps
Josh Dowling-Fitzpatrick, Navy Pilot
Jerad Fehr, Special Warfare (SEALS)
Brye French, Marine Corps Ground
Jonathan Gazaille, Supply Corps
Gee Gee Greene, Surface Warfare
Beau Haworth, Suface Warfare
Wes Henderson, Navy Pilot
John Howell, Marine Corps Pilot
Tyler Lynch, Naval Flight Officer
John Michael Nurthen, Civil Engineer
John O’Boyle, Marine Corps Ground
Ryan Paulson, Navy Pilot
Kahikolu Pescaia, Navy Pilot
Joe Ryan, Marine Corps Ground
Matt Shibata, Marine Corps Ground
Bo Snelson, Marine Corps Ground
Collin Sturdivant, Naval Flight Officer
Brandon Turner, Surface Warfare
Matt Warrick, Marine Corps Ground
Keegan Wetzel, Submarines (Nuclear)

Navy Quick Hitters
• Navy has been the dominant Service Academy over the last decade, posting an 18-2 record against Army (10-0) and Air Force (8-2) in the last 20 meetings combined, winning seven consecutive Commander-In-Chief’s Trophies from 2003-09 and going to nine bowl games in the last 10 years.  Navy has amassed an 82-44 (.651) overall record in the last 10 years, while Air Force is 68-55 (.553) and Army is 32-87 (.269).  The 82 wins are the 21st most in the country over the last decade.
• The Midshipmen punched their ticket to the Dec. 29 Kraft Fight Hunger Bowl at AT&T Park in San Francisco with a 24-17 victory over Florida Atlantic on Nov. 3. It will be Navy’s 18th bowl appearance all-time, including its ninth in the last 10 years. The Mids will take on Arizona State.
• Ken Niumatalolo has led the Midshipmen to a 39-25 (.609) record in his fifth season as head coach.  He is fourth all-time at Navy in career wins.  Niumatalolo holds Navy coaching records for most wins in the first two (18), three (27), four (32) and five seasons (39) of a career.
• Navy’s four losses this season (Notre Dame, Penn State, San Jose State and Troy) have come at the hands of opponents who are a combined 35-13 (.729).  Notre Dame (12-0) is ranked No. 1 in the country and will play in the BCS National Championship Game, while San Jose State (10-2) is ranked 24th in the country.
• Navy has played six bowl eligible teams this year (counting Penn State who will not be going to a bowl due to NCAA sanctions) and compiled a 3-3 record against the six programs.  The Mids defeated Air Force (6-6), Central Michigan (6-6) and East Carolina (8-4) and lost to Notre Dame (12-0), Penn State (8-4) and San Jose State (10-2).
• Over the last nine games (7-2), Navy has outscored the opposition in the second half, 146-80.  The Navy defense has allowed just eight touchdowns in the second half of the last nine contests.
• The Mids have turned the ball over 12 times in their four losses and five times in their seven wins.
•     Senior outside linebacker Keegan Wetzel scored a perfect 1600 on his SAT and is believed to be the only current FBS player in the country to accomplish such a feat.  He carries a 3.89 GPA in systems engineering and is an Academic All-America candidate.  Wetzel has also been a force on the field for the Midshipmen, recording 63 tackles (fourth most on the team), a team-high 13.5 tackles for a loss, a team-high six sacks, has forced a fumble and recovered a fumble.  He is just two sacks away from third on Navy’s single-season sacks list.
• Keenan Reynolds is the first freshman to start at quarterback for Navy since Jim Kubiak started five games in 1991.  Meanwhile, he is just the third freshman in school history to start at quarterback (the other was Alton Grizzard in 1987). Reynolds is 5-1 as a starting quarterback with wins over Central Michigan, Indiana, East Carolina, Florida Atlantic and Texas State and a loss to Troy.  He also came off the bench with Navy down eight points to Air Force and led the Mids to an overtime victory.  Kubiak won just one game as a freshman starter (beat a 5-5 Army team) and Grizzard won two (lost to Army).  Reynolds is the first Navy quarterback to win his first four career starts since senior Bob Powers, who won his first six career starts in 1979.
• Sophomore punter Pablo Beltran is averaging 45.1 yards per punt (34 punts) this season and should his average hold, he would become the school’s single-season record holder. John Skaggs currently holds the single-season punting record at 44.8 yards per punt in 2001.  Beltran would stand 10th nationally if he qualified (must average 3.6 punts per game).
• Navy was 4-0 during the month of October after going 0-5 last year in October. It is the first time Navy went undefeated in the month of October since 1996.  That Navy team finished 9-3 and defeated California in the Aloha Bowl.
• Navy owns a 6-3 record all-time in overtime games, winning six of its last seven.
• Navy owns an 82-44 (.651) record over the last 10 years after posting a 3-30 (.091) mark from 2000-02.  The 82 wins are the 21st most in the country over the last decade.
• Navy is trying to finish No. 1 in fewest penalties and fewest penalty yards per game for the second consecutive year and for the third time in the last four seasons.  The Mids are currently second in penalties (3.4 /gm) and in penalty yards per game (26.5).
• Navy is 3-0 this year and 30-4 (.882) under Niumatalolo when scoring first and 4-4 this year and 9-21 (.300) under Niumatalolo when the opponent scores first.
• The Mids are 3-0 ths year and  24-3 (.889) under Niumatalolo when leading after the first quarter and 4-4 this year and 15-22 (.405) under Niumatalolo when trailing or tied after the first stanza.
• Navy is 6-0 this year and 27-4 (.871) under Niumatalolo when leading at the half and 1-4 this year and 11-22 (.333) under Niumatalolo when tied or trailing at the half.
• Navy is 5-0 this year and 31-3 (.912) under Niumatalolo when leading after three quarters and 2-4 this year and 7-23 (.233) under Niumatalolo when tied or trailing after three quarters.
•    Navy owns a 19-7 (.731) record in games played at Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium under Niumatalolo and is 20-18 (.526) away from home.

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Top 10 Baseball Distractions

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Top 10 Baseball Distractions

Posted on 04 December 2012 by Glenn Clark

Honorable Mention: Auto Racing-Baltimore Indoor Auto Racing (Saturday 7pm 1st Mariner Arena); Ice Hockey: AHL Showcase Norfolk Admirals vs. Hershey Bears (Thursday 7pm from Verizon Center live on Comcast SportsNet); Women’s College Basketball: Virginia @ Maryland (Thursday 7pm Comcast Center), George Mason @ Maryland (Saturday 6pm Comcast Center)

10. Wiz Khalifa (Thursday 7pm Patriot Center), Smashing Pumpkins (Sunday 8pm Patriot Center); Everclear/Eve 6 (Thursday 8pm Rams Head Live), Robert Cray Band (Saturday 8pm Rams Head Live); Misfits (Thursday 6:30pm Recher Theatre); X/Reverend Horton Heat (Wednesday 8pm Baltimore Soundstage); Reverend Peyton’s Big Damn Band (Wednesday 8pm 8×10 Club); Gavin DeGraw/All-American Rejects (Sunday 8pm Fillmore Silver Spring); Kenny “Babyface” Edmonds (Thursday 8pm Howard Theatre), Richard Marx (Saturday 8pm Howard Theatre); Grace Potter and The Nocturnals (Thursday 7pm Friday & Saturday 7:30pm Sunday 6pm 9:30 Club), Jason Isbell and The 400 Unit (Sunday 10pm 9:30 Club), Alex Clare (Monday 7pm 9:30 Club); Phil Vassar (Wednesday 7:30pm Birchmere); Brian Setzer Orchestra (Tuesday 8pm Strathmore); Blue Oyster Cult (Saturday 7pm State Theatre); Wiz Khalifa “O.N.I.F.C.” available in stores/on iTunes (Tuesday); GRAMMY Nominations Concert (Wednesday 10pm from Nashville live on CBS)

I have no idea if the Smashing Pumpkins are still any good, but I know they used to kick a ton of ass…

If there’s ANY WAY I can get out of Thursday Night Live early, I’d LOVE to head down to RHL. Do you have any idea how obsessed I was with Everclear growing up?

Hell…even Eve 6 for that matter…

There’s a part of me that’s pretty sure I’d go see BSO play Christmas tunes in Bethesda…

9. Judah Friedlander (Saturday 8pm Sixth & I Historic Synagogue); Paula Poundstone (Saturday 6pm & 9pm Rams Head on Stage); Dave Attell (Friday & Saturday Magooby’s Joke House); Gary Valentine (Thursday-Saturday Baltimore Comedy Factory); “The Dark Knight Rises” and “Finding Nemo 3D” available on Blu-Ray/DVD (Tuesday); Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show (Tuesday 10pm CBS)

What was that last thing?

Still not ringing a bell…

Oh! Now I know…

(Continued on Page 2…)

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“The Reality Check” Week 4 NFL Power Rankings

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“The Reality Check” Week 4 NFL Power Rankings

Posted on 26 September 2012 by Glenn Clark

Glenn Clark’s Rankings…

32. Cleveland Browns (32)

The only thing I’m certain about in the NFL is that the Browns have been the worst team thus far.

31. Miami Dolphins (31)

But if Dan Carpenter could make a kick they wouldn’t be here.

30. Indianapolis Colts (26)

If you’re going to win a few games you’re probably going to have to beat the Jaguars at home.

29. Jacksonville Jaguars (31)

In my heart of hearts, I still think they’re worse than the Browns. But as a reminder, the Ravens really liked Cecil Shorts III.

28. New Orleans Saints (17)

I knew it would be a struggle. NO ONE knew it would be this much of a struggle.

27. Washington Redskins (21)

You REALLY think it’s a good idea to keep letting RGIII get hit like that, Kyle Shanahan?

26. St. Louis Rams (24)

So…if Jay Cutler stinks and you lose to him, that means?

25. Kansas City Chiefs (30)

They’re not going to go winless. That’s a start.

24. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (22)

Every time you think they might be making progress…

23. Carolina Panthers (19)

Is the league figuring Cam Newton out a bit in year two?

22. Oakland Raiders (29)

That was a damn gutty victory.

21. Tennessee Titans (25)

They’ll need to be able to win a few without so many miracles.

20. Minnesota Vikings (27)

That was a really impressive performance. Not a whole lot more you can say.

19. Buffalo Bills (20)

A win over the Browns is a win, just unlikely to be a win that will make me give you a whole lot of credit.

18. Detroit Lions (12)

But at least they have quarterback issues!

17. Seattle Seahawks (23)

As Drew Forrester says, they’re 2-1*!

(Rankings 16-1 on Page 2…)

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“The Reality Check” Week 3 NFL Power Rankings

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“The Reality Check” Week 3 NFL Power Rankings

Posted on 19 September 2012 by Glenn Clark

Glenn Clark’s Rankings…

32. Cleveland Browns (30)

But hey, Trent Richardson is pretty good.

31. Jacksonville Jaguars (28)

This Blaine Gabbert thing isn’t really working out.

30. Kansas City Chiefs (20)

They HAVE to be better than this. Right?

29. Oakland Raiders (25)

But they snapped the ball better…

28. Miami Dolphins (32)

They beat the Raiders at home. You can only get so much credit for that.

27. Minnesota Vikings (23)

They have good players on their team. They shouldn’t be this bad.

26. Indianapolis Colts (31)

They beat the Vikings at home. You can only get so much credit for that.

25. Tennessee Titans (21)

Tough schedule, but the “playoff dark horse” talk has slowed down.

24. St. Louis Rams (26)

Jerk or not, I’d take Cortland Finnegan on my team.

23. Seattle Seahawks (27)

I’m not a believer in Russell Wilson, but that was a statement victory.

22. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (18)

It’s a shame the folks down in Tampa have nothing to talk about.

21. Washington Redskins (17)

Is there a chance they’re halfway good?

20. Buffalo Bills (29)

They have all the looks of an 8-8 team.

19. Carolina Panthers (24)

I guess they still know how to run the ball.

18. Dallas Cowboys (12)

Oh hey there, back to earth Tony Romo. We were expecting you.

17. New Orleans Saints (10)

I still think they’ll become the Saints again at some point.

(Rankings 16-1 on Page 2…)

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“The Five Plays That Determined The Game” – Ravens/Eagles

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“The Five Plays That Determined The Game” – Ravens/Eagles

Posted on 18 September 2012 by Glenn Clark

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

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

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

Here are the five plays that determined the Ravens’ 24-23 loss to the Philadelphia Eagles Sunday at Lincoln Financial Field…

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

Glenn Clark’s Plays…

5. DeMeco Ryans intercepts Joe Flacco pass intended for Dennis Pitta (3rd quarter)

4. Jeremy Maclin 23 yard TD catch from Michael Vick (3rd quarter)

3. Jacoby Jones 25 yard TD catch from Joe Flacco nullified by offensive pass interference (4th quarter)

2. Joe Flacco pass intended for Ray Rice incomplete on 4th & 1 (4th quarter)

1. Joe Flacco pass to Dennis Pitta incomplete on 3rd & 1 (4th quarter)

(Ryan’s plays on Page 2…)

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Morning Reaction Tuesday Top 7 Ravens for Week 2

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Morning Reaction Tuesday Top 7 Ravens for Week 2

Posted on 18 September 2012 by Luke Jones

Below are our Tuesday Top 7 Ravens players in the 24-23 loss to the Philadelphia Eagles in Week 2. We’ll track our rankings throughout the 2012 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 Luke’s explanation HERE while Drew’s list can be found HERE.

Luke Jones’ Top 7 …

7) Courtney Upshaw
Pitta

6) Lardarius Webb

5) Dennis Pitta
Pitta

4) Albert McClellan
McClellan

3) Marshal Yanda
yanda

2) Ray Rice
Rice

1) Justin Tucker
Tucker

Drew Forrester’s Top 7 …

7) Vonta Leach
Leach

6) Courtney Upshaw
upshaw

5) Bernard Pollard
Pollard

4) Lardarius Webb
Webb

3) Dennis Pitta
Pitta

2) Ray Rice
Rice

1) Justin Tucker
Tucker

SEASON TO DATE:
Luke Jones:
1. Ray Rice (12 points)
2. Marshal Yanda (9 points)
3. Dennis Pitta (8 points)
4. Joe Flacco (7 points)
4. Justin Tucker (7 points)
6. Albert McClellan (4 points)
7. Bernard Pollard (3 points)
8. Haloti Ngata (2 points)
8. Lardarius Webb (2 points)
10. Ray Lewis (1 point)
10. Courtney Upshaw (1 point)

Drew Forrester:
1. Dennis Pitta (10 points)
2. Justin Tucker (9 points)
2. Bernard Pollard (9 points)
4. Joe Flacco (7 points)
5. Ray Rice (6 points)
6. Ray Lewis (4 points)
6. Lardarius Webb (4 points)
8. Kelechi Osemele (3 points)
9. Courtney Upshaw (2 points)
10. Ramon Harewood (1 point)
10. Vonta Leach (1 point)

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As offense sputters, Ravens face new reality in loss to Philadelphia

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As offense sputters, Ravens face new reality in loss to Philadelphia

Posted on 16 September 2012 by Luke Jones

PHILADELPHIA –It was a tale of two halves in Philadelphia as the Ravens fell 24-23 to the Eagles on Sunday at Lincoln Financial Field.

Their first-half performance looked a lot like they did in their Week 1 demolition of the Cincinnati Bengals as the Ravens offense scored 17 points and the defense employed a “bend but don’t break” mentality as Philadelphia turned it over three times in the red zone. A chorus of boos even rang out in the Eagles’ home stadium as the Ravens enjoyed a 17-7 halftime lead.

But what we suspected for much of the offseason about the Ravens came true in the second half as the defense wasn’t good enough to overcome a stalled offensive attack, opening the floodgates for the Eagles to make their second-half comeback.

Joe Flacco’s interception on the opening drive of the third quarter set the tone for an offense that sputtered and a defense that couldn’t stop quarterback Michael Vick and the Eagles defense on its way to allowing nearly 500 yards of total offense in the loss. Offensively, the Ravens didn’t do enough to get running back Ray Rice involved and were an abysmal 3-for-10 on third down in the second half.

After going 11-0 when leading at the half last season, the Ravens squandered a 10-point lead in the second half and dropped a Week 2 contest for the third straight year.

“[The Eagles] competed right down to the end, and they found a way to win the game,” coach John Harbaugh said. “They made the plays that they had to make to win the football game [and] did a nice job.”

Unlike their dud performance against the pedestrian Tennessee Titans in Week 2 last season, the Ravens played a good football team with talent capable of competing with anyone in the league. Just like it was important not to read too much into the Ravens’ season-opening win over Cincinnati, a loss to Philadelphia isn’t an event over which to panic, either.

However, Sunday offered a first glimpse at what might happen to the Ravens this season when their new-look offense isn’t clicking. The defense simply isn’t good enough to win games by itself anymore, and that was painfully obvious as Vick carved up the secondary and was able to escape the pocket on the sporadic occasions when the Ravens managed to pressure the athletic quarterback.

Last week, it was the offense picking up the slack for a defense that allowed two long scoring drives — one at the end of the first half and the other being Cincinnati’s opening drive of the third quarter — but the defense couldn’t return the favor Sunday as Flacco struggled to an 8-for-25 performance after halftime. A 10-point halftime lead evaporated less than 10 minutes into the third quarter.

“When you’ve got somebody down, put them away,” linebacker Ray Lewis said. “Don’t leave a team around. For us to come out in the third quarter, we gave up 10 quick unanswered points. The crowd was out of it and everything. Any time you give a team like that motivation, any time you [do that] in a hostile environment, the game is going to chance and that’s exactly what happened.”

For as much as we’ve heard about “the next man up” when the Ravens have talked about the loss of Pro Bowl linebacker Terrell Suggs, defensive coordinator Dean Pees is still looking for the optimum fit in his absence. The Ravens used Albert McClellan, Courtney Upshaw, Sergio Kindle, and Jameel McClain at outside linebacker on Sunday in an effort to sustain any level of pressure — and containment on the edge — and the results were lukewarm as Vick threw for 371 yards and ran for 34 yards in a winning effort.

When the Ravens were able to pressure Vick in the pocket, the secondary struggled to stick with speedy wide receiver DeSean Jackson while the linebackers had no answer for tight end Brent Celek, who caught eight passes for a game-high 157 yards.

Philadelphia was 5-for-8 on third downs in the second half as the defense couldn’t get off the field. And the Eagles found the second-half prosperity despite the loss of starting center Jason Kelce and starting left tackle King Dunlap on their offensive line.

The sheer fact that the Ravens still weren’t able to muster a consistent pass rush after Philadelphia lost two starters on the line is concerning when considering the defense’s prospects in the coming weeks.

“They did a great job of driving the ball down on us and staying alive,” defensive tackle Haloti Ngata said. “Vick was able to make some plays on his feet and with his arm. We just have to do a better job to tighten it up and we must learn from this and move on with the rest of the season.”

The Ravens ran into a Philadelphia defense that pressured Flacco and did an exceptional job sticking with Baltimore receivers in man coverage. It resulted in a frustrating second half in which the Ravens looked anything like the championship-caliber team we watched in the season’s first 90 minutes of play.

Questions will remain whether the Ravens should have involved Rice more heavily in the offense as Flacco struggled to generate production in the passing game, but any way you slice it, Baltimore failed to get the job done on both sides of the football.

“We’ll probably go back and look and see if there’s some things we could have done there just because they were doing a good job in coverage and things like,” Flacco said. “The bottom line is we have to execute and we weren’t able to.”

Unlike last week, the Ravens offense couldn’t get the job done

And the defense wasn’t able to bail them out like we’re used to seeing.

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