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Jernigan, Taliaferro practice fully for second straight day

Posted on 18 September 2015 by Luke Jones

Moving closer toward their Week 2 meeting with the Oakland Raiders, the Ravens are likely to regain a key starter on their defensive line with Timmy Jernigan practicing fully for a second straight day.

The second-year defensive tackle and backup running back Lorenzo Taliaferro were full participants on Thursday and appear set to make their respective returns after suffering knee injuries during the preseason. Starting running back Justin Forsett (shoulder) also practiced fully on Thursday after being a limited participant a day earlier.

Left tackle Eugene Monroe (concussion) and wide receiver Breshad Perriman (knee) missed practice again on Thursday while inside linebacker Daryl Smith and defensive end Chris Canty received the day off.

The Raiders received good news on Thursday with veteran safety Charles Woodson (shoulder) returning to practice on a limited basis. Starting quarterback Derek Carr (hand) was a full participant for a second consecutive practice.

Below is Thursday’s official injury report:

DID NOT PARTICIPATE: DE Chris Canty (non-injury), T Eugene Monroe (concussion), WR Breshad Perriman (knee), LB Daryl Smith (non-injury)
LIMITED PARTICIPATION: CB Rashaan Melvin (thigh)
FULL PARTICIPATION: RB Justin Forsett (shoulder), DT Timmy Jernigan (knee), RB Lorenzo Taliaferro (knee)

DID NOT PARTICIPATE: DT Justin Ellis (ankle), DE Benson Mayowa (knee), RB Jamize Olawale (ankle)
LIMITED PARTICIPATION: S Charles Woodson (shoulder)
FULL PARTICIPATION: QB Derek Carr (right hand)

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Steve Corkran previews Ravens-Raiders matchup

Posted on 17 September 2015 by WNST Staff











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Paul Wexler on Oakland’s lack of talent

Posted on 17 September 2015 by WNST Staff

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Chances should be there for Ravens to throw downfield in Oakland

Posted on 17 September 2015 by Luke Jones

The failures of the Ravens’ passing game were a collaborative effort in Week 1, but the peripheral numbers will still make you shudder as the attention has shifted toward Sunday’s meeting with the Oakland Raiders.

In the first half in Denver, Joe Flacco threw exactly one pass more than eight yards beyond the line of scrimmage through the air. It came on a pass he threw away on the final play of the second quarter.

The eighth-year quarterback had just two throws of that variety through the first three quarters. Of Flacco’s 32 pass attempts in the 19-13 loss to the Broncos, just eight traveled more than 10 yards past the line of scrimmage through the air. Seven other passes were either at or behind the line of scrimmage.

Even with lousy pass protection and receivers lacking speed, the Ravens needed to pose some semblance of a threat to throw the ball down the field to keep the opposition honest. And that responsibility largely falls on the shoulders of new offensive coordinator Marc Trestman, a sentiment that Flacco gently alluded to when addressing reporters in California on Wednesday.

“We didn’t ever really attempt to do it and we’ve talked about that. We need to take our shots,” Flacco said. “If nothing else, at least let teams know that we’re going to do that and have the confidence in ourselves in doing that. As far as confidence goes, I think that also translates to us. If we’re going to call those things and get them going, I think it’ll give us the confidence to go out there and execute plays and have some explosiveness to us.

“It’s tough to maintain 15-play drives consistently and score points, so we’re going to have to have that as part of our game. To start off, I would say that and then we just have to make sure that we protect and I find the soft zone in the pocket and put the ball where it needs to be.”

In fairness, Trestman lacks the luxury of having ex-Raven Torrey Smith or even speedy rookie Breshad Perriman on the outside, but the Ravens must find a way to push the ball downfield in Week 2. It will begin with improved pass protection against an Oakland front seven that isn’t as imposing as Denver’s, but the Raiders’ pash-rushing trio of Justin Tuck, Khalil Mack, and Aldon Smith will try to tee off on Flacco in a similar fashion.

If the offensive line can bounce back in Week 2, opportunities should be there to take a few shots against an Oakland secondary that is likely to be without either of its starting safeties from Week 1. Nate Allen suffered a season-ending knee injury and Charles Woodson suffered a shoulder injury in the lost to Cincinnati.

Larry Asante and Taylor Mays could be their respective replacements with the latter having just been re-signed this week. They would join starting cornerbacks T.J. Carrie — a 2014 seventh-round pick — and 2013 first-round selection D.J. Hayden, who hasn’t shown much at the NFL level.

Those realities should spell trouble for a pass defense that finished 16th in the NFL a year ago and allowed Cincinnati’s Andy Dalton to throw for 269 yards last week.

Of course, speed will remain a weakness for the Ravens as Perriman isn’t expected to play in Week 2, but Flacco said that’s no excuse for a passing game that produced fewer yards than any in the league last week. Trestman must incorporate his young tight ends against suspect safeties while seizing a few opportunities to test them deep, even if it only leads to more breathing room underneath.

“It’s about exploiting weaknesses in defenses and just a combination of things and hitting them at the right time,” Flacco said. “It’s not about coming over there and running a 4.2 [40-yard dash] running by guys; you seldom see that. I don’t think we’re going to have that guy right now that’s going to run by guys five times a game, but we definitely have guys that can run crossing routes and be hit 30 yards downfield and can run double moves downfield — things like that.

“That’s what we’re going to have to do.”

If the Ravens offense is unable to do those things against a banged-up Oakland secondary, it could be time to panic.

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Guy Haberman weighs in on a disappointing start to the Raiders season

Posted on 16 September 2015 by WNST Staff

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Mike Wagaman previews the Ravens-Raiders Week 2 matchup

Posted on 16 September 2015 by WNST Staff







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Coley Harvey analyzes Bengals dominating victory over Oakland

Posted on 16 September 2015 by WNST Staff

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JT The Brick recaps the Raiders embarrassing Week 1 effort vs. the Bengals

Posted on 16 September 2015 by WNST Staff

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Ravens next game up – focus on the Raiders

Posted on 15 September 2015 by Dennis Koulatsos

While hunkering down in San Jose, the Baltimore Ravens are preparing for the Oakland Raiders.  Both teams are coming off of losses, the Ravens in a close one to the Broncos, while the Raiders got blown out by the Cincinnati Bengals.

The Ravens suffered a devastating loss on the defensive side of the ball, losing OLB Terrell Suggs for the year and LT Eugene Monroe for the game. The Raiders had some significant losses as well.  Starting QB Derek Carr sustained a severe bruise to his throwing hand, while trying to stiff arm Bengals DB Adam Jones on a run near the sideline. His availability is up in the air at this time, as his backup Matt McGloin finished the game for him.  The Bengals have talked to Christian Ponder this week, but have not signed him.

In other Oakland injury news, the Raiders fear safety Nate Allen has torn his ACL, and he will undergo more testing this week. The Raiders’ other starting safety – Charles Woodson – is scheduled for an MRI after injuring his shoulder in Sunday’s game as well. The Raiders have signed much traveled veteran safety Taylor Mays, who has bounced around the league and has never lived up to his draft position and college hype. The backup safeties are Larry Asante and rookie Keenan Lambert – not exactly household names.  The Bengals had great success attacking the Raiders’ safeties with their TEs, particularly Tyler Eifert who had 10 receptions for 104 yards and 2 touchdowns.

That’s a matchup the Ravens should be able to exploit with their 3 young TEs, Crockett Gillmore, Maxx Williams and Nick Boyle.  Offensive coordinator Marc Trestman needs to focus and build his game plan around attacking the Raiders’ safeties. Joe Flacco needs to be more careful with the ball, and make sure that his receivers have some separation before airing it out.

The Raiders defensive line is stout, and Ravens RT Rick Wagner is going to have his hands full with former NY Giant Justin Tuck lined up across from him.  Tuck played at a very high level in the opener, and gave Bengals’ RT Andre Smith more than he could handle.  NT Dan Williams also graded out very high last week, and could give Ravens C Jeremy Zuttah problems up the middle.  Rush end/OLB Khalil Mack finished his rookie campaign in a strong fashion, and has picked up right where he left from.  If Eugene Monroe does not pass the NFL’s concussion protocol, the Ravens should consider moving LG Kelechi Osemele to RT, and inserting second year pro John Urschel in the LG spot.

I think a line – from left to right – of Osemele, Urschel, Zuttah, Yanda and Wagner would be superior to Hurst, Osemele, Zuttah, Yanda and Wagner. I don’t think the drop off is as severe from Osemele to Urschel, in contrast from Monroe to Hurst.  Urschel can get help from Zuttah if need be, while your left tackle most of the time is on an island.

The Raiders defensive backs are Travis Carrie and DJ Hayden.  They are not that good and if Flacco gets time, he should be able to complete some passes on them downfield. They also lack quality depth at the position. Raiders special teams are in good shape with Sebastian Janikowski handling the kicking duties, and the dangerous Taiwan Jones in the return game. Ravens special teams coach Jerry Rosburg needs to game plan to contain Jones.

On the offensive side of the ball, LT Donald Penn is a journeyman who started for Tampa Bay last year.  It’s too bad for the Ravens that Suggs is out for the year, as Penn is not that good and would have been an easy matchup.  Courtney Upshaw and Za’Darius Smith should be able to get their hands on the Raiders’ QB.  RT Austin Howard isn’t much better, and Elvis Dumervil should have a field day. RG J’Marcus Webb is equally unimpressive, where the tandem of Brandon Williams and Carl Davis can do some damage. The Raiders’ strength along their o-line is in their LG and C, where Gabe Jackson and Rodney Hudson man those positions.

Latavius Murray starts at RB for the Raiders, and he is a big downhill tackle to tackle type of a back, that they will try to run behind Jackson and Hudson.  Marcel Reece starts at fullback, where he’s been an average blocker throughout his career, and not much of a threat when carrying the ball. The primary receivers are former 49er Michael Crabtree and mercurial rookie Amari Cooper. Cooper has been game ready since he was drafted out of the University of Alabama, and Ravens DB Jimmy Smith needs to lock up on him from the opening whistle.

This is a must win game for the Ravens, as teams that start their season 0-2 rarely make it into the playoffs.  Although they’re on the road for the second consecutive week, there is no  better opponent, no better opportunity to get a road victory against than these Raiders.  Although they have a few pieces to build around, these are still the “same old Raiders” that we’ve been seeing for the better part of the last decade.  Once you get past their defensive line and Khalil Mack there’s not much there, so the Ravens offense should be able to move the ball a lot better against them than they did against the Broncos.  On the flip side of the ball, if the Ravens defense repeats their performance from a week ago, they will shut down the Raiders’ offense, particularly if Carr can’t go and McGloin is the QB.



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The Peter Principles (Ch. 3): How close did Angelos come to owning Baltimore’s NFL team?

Posted on 14 July 2014 by Nestor Aparicio

(Author note: This is Chapter 3 of future book “The Peter Principles” that I was working to finish in March 2014 when my wife was diagnosed with leukemia. I have released the first three chapters of the book, which chronicles the history of Peter G. Angelos and his ownership of the Baltimore Orioles. I think you’ll find much of this already-reported information to be illuminating.)

Chapter 1 is available here.

Chapter 2 is available here.



3. Giving Peter The Ball & Scabs


“I think they are concerned about litigation, but they feel as we do, that no one wants to litigate but one has to sometimes and the chances for success are excellent. I’m confident that Baltimore is the best applicant for an NFL franchise both from a financial and a fan standpoint.”

– Peter Angelos, May 18, 1994 to The Sun regarding Washington Redskins owner Jack Kent Cooke blocking his rights to buying an NFL franchise



TO UNDERSTAND BALTIMORE’S INNATE YEARNING for a National Football League team is to understand what the Baltimore Ravens have meant to the town, its sports psyche and the league since returning in 1996. After winning Super Bowls in 2001 and 2013, it’s very hard to fathom that time and space between March 28, 1984 and Nov. 6, 1995 ­– when the town that participated in what became known as The Greatest Game Ever Played in 1958, the place that the Colts of Johnny Unitas, Lenny Moore, Art Donovan, Raymond Berry and Jim Parker roamed on 33rd Street in what was affectionately known as the World’s Largest Outdoor Insane Asylum – was without the NFL.

The Orioles were the toast of Baltimore for sure in the early 1990s but there was always something missing in the Charm City when there weren’t NFL games on those 12 seasons of Sundays in the fall. After a decade of high-speed pursuits by the state of Maryland, Mayor of Baltimore and then Governor William Donald Schaefer, the Maryland Stadium Authority and several bidders in 1993, the city was repeatedly turned down in the expansion process. By the time Angelos had purchased the Orioles, the NFL had found itself in a precarious situation with Baltimore sitting empty and several suitors working every angle possible to steal an existing team and essentially steal another city’s team the way the Colts were stolen off in the middle of the night in 1984 by owner Robert Irsay. And Washington Redskins owner Jack Kent Cooke had tried every possible way to keep Baltimore from ever having a team again and once attempted to get a stadium built in Laurel to ensure it. Schaefer blocked Cooke and then rallied support for civic monies to be held to fund a Baltimore football stadium at Camden Yards if the NFL granted the city a franchise.

Despite all of the efforts of Schaefer and his steward Herb Belgrad, it didn’t work. In early 1995, the city of Baltimore was considered to be further away than ever in a search for a return to the NFL now that a pair of expansion teams had gone to Jacksonville and Charlotte and it was clear St. Louis was in the final stages of swiping the Rams from Los Angeles.

It was a dirty business, this franchise ownership, league gamesmanship, civic hostage taking of teams and the politics of modern sports. But Baltimore and Maryland were a unique player in the revolving door of NFL cities vying for the theft of teams from other markets where old stadia were failing to lure more revenue or ownerships were dissatisfied and looking for a bigger, better deal – led of course by Irsay’s decision to leave the land of pleasant living a decade earlier and the machinations of Al Davis in California with the Raiders.

Because of what the Orioles meant to the area and the success of the downtown revitalization spurred by the facility, Baltimore, Maryland had real money in the state coffers to fund a new stadium in the parking lot adjacent to the baseball stadium at Camden Yards. The area had always been earmarked as the site of a potential NFL team but the only problem was finding one of the existing 30 teams to find the deal too $weet to pass up. There was a lot of money to be made on an NFL franchise in Baltimore and the thought was that with many municipalities hard-lining NFL owners on the stadium issue on behalf of local taxpayers, it was only a matter of time before someone moved a team to the former home of the Colts. The insiders knew just how much money and how rich the Baltimore deal was for an owner who wanted to flee but the media and local fans were very skeptical after a decade of operating in the fog of having lost the Colts.

Once again, Angelos went into his office in Baltimore and tried to don the cape as a civic hero, flying in to save the day and bring the NFL back to his hometown.

But there were several other suitors pushing to be the winner in this grab for a football team in 1994.

Leonard “Boogie” Weinglass left Angelos’ partnership before it ever really began in September 1993 – he never invested in the team after being the original local person who was interested in the club when Eli Jacobs put it up for sale. At the time he said it was in an effort to pursue an NFL team that he hoped to call the Bombers, paying homage to the World War II planes that were built in Eastern Baltimore County at Martin Marietta.

Malcolm Glazer and his sons Bryan and Joel had been one of the three failed efforts by Baltimore to win the 1993 NFL expansion process. Now, they had set their sights on buying the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in their home state of Florida, where they lived in Palm Beach.

Baltimore beer distributors Bob Footlick and Bob Pinkner had also partnered with Robert Schulman in an effort to pursue an NFL team.

And, of course, with his August 1993 victory in the New York auction house and his leading man status as the owner of the Orioles, Angelos was funded and motivated to join Miami’s Wayne Huizenga as the second man to own an NFL and MLB franchise simultaneously. There had previously been language to disallow such a local

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