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Ravens release 2012 schedule headlined by four prime-time games

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Ravens release 2012 schedule headlined by four prime-time games

Posted on 17 April 2012 by Luke Jones

Though the Ravens’ 16 opponents had been known since the end of the 2011 regular season, there was still a feeling akin to Christmas morning when the NFL announced the 2012 schedule on Tuesday night.

The 2011 AFC North champion Ravens will play in four nationally-televised games, including the season opener when they host the Cincinnati Bengals on Sept. 10 in the first Monday night home game played in Baltimore since 2007.

Also highlighting the 2012 schedule will be Sunday night contests with the AFC champion New England Patriots at M&T Bank Stadium and a battle at Heinz Field in November, where the Ravens won in dramatic fashion on an NBC telecast last season.

Three of the Ravens’ first four games are nationally-televised home games in prime time as the Browns will come to Baltimore for a Thursday night game to end the stretch of national exposure on Sept. 27. However, John Harbaugh’s Ravens play only two home games in October and November before playing three of their final five games in Baltimore for the month of December.

An unpopular portion of the schedule will be the league’s decision to have the Ravens play Pittsburgh twice in three weeks, a rare concurrence with the NFL schedule that leaves an intense few weeks but a void before and after the stretch for the two fan bases.

Baltimore will play the Manning brothers in consecutive weeks when Denver visits M&T Bank Stadium on Dec. 16 and Eli Manning and the Super Bowl champions roll into town the following week.

The Ravens make their lone trip to the West Coast on Nov. 25 when they travel to San Diego to take on the San Diego Chargers.

Of their 16 opponents, the Ravens will play 13 games in which the projected starting quarterback has been invited to the Pro Bowl, which will create a daunting task for the Baltimore defense in order to repeat as division champions.

2012 SCHEDULE

Monday, Sept. 10 Cincinnati Bengals - 7:00 p.m. (ESPN)
Skinny: The Ravens host their first Monday night game in five years and begin the season against Marvin Lewis’ Bengals, who hope to build on a surprising 9-7 campaign in which they made the playoffs under rookie quarterback Andy Dalton.

Sunday, Sept. 16 at Philadelphia Eagles – 1:00 p.m. (CBS)
Skinny: John Harbaugh’s former team is the only one with which the Ravens have ever tied, a 10-10 barnburner at Memorial Stadium on Nov. 16, 1997.

Sunday, Sept. 23 New England Patriots – 8:20 p.m. (NBC)
Skinny: The sting of the AFC Championship loss will clearly be on the Ravens’ minds as they welcome Tom Brady and Co. to town for Sunday Night Football to try to extract some revenge.

Thursday, Sept. 27 Cleveland Browns – 8:20 p.m. (NFL Network)
Skinny: The Ravens’ 19 regular-season wins over the Browns are the most they own against any team in the NFL.

Sunday, Oct. 7 at Kansas City Chiefs - 1:00 p.m. (CBS)
Skinny: It’s staggering how dramatically the Chiefs collapsed under Todd Haley after losing to the Ravens in a playoff game at Arrowhead Stadium two years ago.

Sunday, Oct. 14 vs. Dallas Cowboys – 1:00 p.m. (FOX)
Skinny: There are some interesting subplots to this one, including Dallas coach Jason Garrett nearly becoming the head man in Baltimore, but the Cowboys are 0-3 all-time against the Ravens.

Sunday, Oct. 21 at Houston Texans - 1:00 p.m. (CBS)
Skinny: Despite making their first-ever playoff appearance in 2011, Gary Kubiak’s Texans have spent the entire offseason wondering what could have been if quarterback Matt Schaub hadn’t gotten hurt.

Sunday, Oct. 28 BYE WEEK

Sunday, Nov. 4 at Cleveland Browns - 1:00 p.m. (CBS)
Skinny: The Browns haven’t beaten Baltimore since 2007, which clearly doesn’t make Clevelanders very happy.

Sunday, Nov. 11 vs. Oakland Raiders - 1:00 p.m. (CBS)
Skinny: Carson Palmer will need to rekindle the magic from his days with the Bengals in order for the Raiders to beat the Ravens for the first time ever in Baltimore (four previous attempts).

Sunday, Nov. 18 at Pittsburgh Steelers – 8:20 p.m. (NBC)
Skinny: This Sunday night affair marks the sixth straight season these rivals have played in a prime-time contest, with the last four night games each decided in the closing seconds.

Sunday, Nov. 25 at San Diego Chargers – 4:05 p.m. (CBS)
Skinny: The Ravens’ trip to San Diego last season was the only game in which Baltimore was thoroughly embarrassed, but the Chargers no longer have big target Vincent Jackson.

Sunday, Dec. 2 vs. Pittsburgh Steelers - 4:15 p.m. (CBS)
Skinny: It’s unusual for these teams to meet twice in three weeks, but the Steelers will have revenge on their minds after being embarrassed in Baltimore in the 2011 season opener.

Sunday, Dec. 9 at Washington Redskins – 1:00 p.m. (CBS)
Skinny: The Redskins haven’t beaten the Ravens since Tony Banks was at the helm for Baltimore in the midst of a five-game touchdown drought during the 2000 Super Bowl season.

Sunday, Dec. 16 vs. Denver Broncos – 1:00 p.m. (CBS)
Skinny: The Ravens haven’t beaten a Peyton Manning-led team since 2001 when the former Indianapolis quarterback threw an interception returned for a touchdown by Hall of Fame defensive back Rod Woodson.

Sunday, Dec. 23 vs. New York Giants - 1:00 p.m. (FOX)
Skinny: Eli Manning once referred to his 2004 loss in Baltimore as the worst game he had ever played at any level, but it’s fair to say the Giants quarterback has recovered by winning two Super Bowls since then.

Sunday, Dec. 30 at Cincinnati Bengals – 1:00 p.m. (CBS)
Skinny: Before last season’s win in the regular-season finale, the Ravens had lost five of their previous six games at Paul Brown Stadium.

***Note: The final seven weeks of the regular season are subject to flexible scheduling.

 






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Former Terp Madieu Williams Starting to Catch RG3 Fever in DC

Posted on 13 April 2012 by WNST Audio

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Broncos SB Odds Improve, Ravens Drop After Start of Free Agency

Posted on 19 March 2012 by WNST Staff

Peyton Manning Odds

Peyton Manning – Total Passing Yards in the 2012 Regular Season? 

Over/Under                    4000    

Peyton Manning – Total TD Passes in the 2012 Regular Season?       

Over/Under                    28½

Peyton Manning – Completion % in the 2012 Regular Season?          

Over/Under                    65%

Peyton Manning – Total Interceptions in the 2012 Regular Season?   

Over/Under                    16½

Peyton Manning – Will his first pass of the season be complete, incomplete, or an Interception?

Complete                      -180     (5/9)

Incomplete                    +150     (3/2)

Interception                   +1000   (10/1)

Peyton Manning – Will he win 2012 NFL MVP?           

Yes                              7/1       

Peyton Manning – Will he win 2012 Comeback Player of the Year?   

Yes                              1/1       

Tim Tebow Odds

Tim Tebow – Which team will he be on for Week 1 of the Regular Season?     

Jacksonville Jaguars                  3/2

Denver Broncos                         7/4

Miami Dolphins                          7/4

New England Patriots                 7/1

Cleveland Browns                       12/1

Tim Tebow – Will he start as a QB in the NFL Week 1 of the Regular Season?          

Yes                  EVEN  

No                    -140     

Broncos Odds

Denver Broncos – Regular Season Wins         

Over                              10        

Will the Denver Broncos play against The New York Giants in the 2013 Super Bowl?           

Yes                              50/1     

Will the Denver Broncos win the AFC?

Yes                              6/1

Will the Denver Broncos win the AFC West?

Yes                              2/3

2013 SUPER BOWL XLVII ODDS  (odds current, 3/19/2012)                  (odds on 2/6/2012)

Green Bay Packers                                13/2                                          6/1

New England Patriots                             15/2                                          7/1

New Orleans Saints                               10/1                                          8/1

Denver Broncos                                     12/1                                          50/1

Houston Texans                                     12/1                                          12/1

San Francisco 49ers                              14/1                                          18/1

Baltimore Ravens                                   15/1                                          14/1

Philadelphia Eagles                                15/1                                          12/1

New York Giants                                    16/1                                          15/1

Pittsburgh Steelers                                18/1                                          12/1

Dallas Cowboys                                     20/1                                          18/1

San Diego Chargers                               22/1                                          16/1

Chicago Bears                                       25/1                                          30/1

Detroit Lions                                          25/1                                          18/1

Atlanta Falcons                                     28/1                                          22/1

New York Jets                                       30/1                                          16/1

Carolina Panthers                                  40/1                                          50/1

Cincinnati Bengals                                 40/1                                          40/1

Miami Dolphins                                      40/1                                          35/1

Seattle Seahawks                                  40/1                                          60/1

Arizona Cardinals                                   50/1                                          30/1

Kansas City Chiefs                                50/1                                          50/1

Oakland Raiders                                    50/1                                          50/1

Tennessee Titans                                   50/1                                          40/1

Washington Redskins                            50/1                                          60/1

Buffalo Bills                                           75/1                                          60/1

St. Louis Rams                                      75/1                                          75/1

Tampa Bay Buccaneers                         75/1                                          75/1

Indianapolis Colts                                   100/1                                        50/1

Jacksonville Jaguars                               100/1                                        100/1

Minnesota Vikings                                 100/1                                        75/1

Cleveland Browns                                   150/1                                        100/1

Courtesy of Bovada, (www.Bovada.lv,  Twitter: @BovadaLV).

“Our Super Bowl odds have been down for a couple weeks until we knew where Peyton would go since this signing would have such a huge impact on every team’s odds.  Denver who we had at 50-1 before we closed the odds have dropped to 12-1 and as I expected the public is taking them regardless as soon as we opened this morning.  We were a bit lucky that Denver came out of nowhere in the Manning Sweepstakes so not too many people bet them at 50-1.”

-Kevin Bradley, Bovada.lv Sportsbook Manager

 

 

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Rice, Suggs In Running For Madden 13 Cover

Posted on 08 March 2012 by WNST Staff

EA SPORTS AND ESPN’S SPORTSNATION KICK OFF MADDEN NFL 13 COVER ATHLETE FAN VOTE

This Year’s Campaign Expands to 64 Players – With Play-In Round Featuring Two Athletes

From Each NFL Team Represented in Head-to-Head Matchups

March 7, 2012 – EA SPORTS™ and ESPN announced today the return of the award-winning Madden NFL Cover Vote campaign, where fans can cast their vote for the next athlete to grace the cover of one of the highest-selling videogame franchises in North America. Last year, nearly 13 million votes were cast through ESPNSportsNation.com and ESPN mobile in both companies’ most successful cross-platform activation. Tenth-seeded Cleveland Browns running back, Peyton Hillis, trucked through the six week competition all the way to the ultimate end zone – the Madden NFL 12 cover.

This year’s competition will incorporate more athletes and more chances to vote as the field has been expanded to 64 NFL players, putting even more control in the hands of the fans. Beginning today through March 21, fans can visit the SportsNation Facebook page to choose among the 64 candidates in a play-in round (each matchup features two players from the same NFL team) to advance to the official 32-player, seeded tournament.  The winners of the play-in round will be unveiled with the official seeded, 32-player bracket on March 21 on ESPN’s “Madden Cover Vote Special” from 5-6p.m. EST.  To ensure their favorite player advances to the next round, fans are encouraged to vote daily and tweet their picks using #MyMaddenCoverVote on Twitter.  Every Wednesday between March 21 and April 25, fans can tune into SportsNation on ESPN2at 5p.m. EST to check out the latest Madden NFL 13 Cover Vote standings.

In addition to the SportsNation Facebook page, fans will be able to vote in the play-in round via the open Web through widgets embedded on blogs, websites and more.  Each widget features an individual match-up for each of the 32 total teams in the league.  For the cover vote from March 21-April 25, all voting must be cast at ESPN.com/MaddenVote.

The star-studded list of candidates participating in the play-in round features past Super Bowl winners, perennial Pro Bowlers and some of the most popular players in the NFL including Drew Brees, Arian Foster and Rob Gronkowski. The full list of matchups featured in the play-in round are:

AFC

Ravens Terrell Suggs vs. Ray Rice Jets Mark Sanchez vs. Darrelle Revis
Steelers Troy Polamalu vs. Ben Roethlisberger Bills Stevie Johnson vs. Ryan Fitzpatrick
Browns Joe Thomas vs. Joe Haden Dolphins Reggie Bush vs. Brandon Marshall
Bengals Andy Dalton vs. AJ Green Patriots Wes Welker vs. Rob Gronkowski
Texans Arian Foster vs. Andre Johnson Chargers Phillip Rivers vs. Antonio Gates
Colts Dwight Freeney vs. Robert Mathis Broncos Tim Tebow vs. Von Miller
Jaguars Maurice Jones-Drew vs. Blaine Gabbert Chiefs Dwayne Bowe vs. Derrick Johnson
Titans Jake Locker vs. Chris Johnson Raiders Sebastian Janikowski vs. Shane Lechler

NFC

Bears Jay Cutler vs. Matt Forte Rams Chris Long vs. Brandon Lloyd
Lions Calvin Johnson vs. Matt Stafford 49ers Vernon Davis vs. Patrick Willis
Vikings Percy Harvin vs. Jared Allen Seahawks Marshawn Lynch vs. Earl Thomas
Packers Aaron Rodgers vs. Clay Matthews Cardinals Larry Fitzgerald vs. Patrick Peterson
Falcons Matt Ryan vs. Julio Jones Eagles Michael Vick vs. LeSean McCoy
Saints Drew Brees vs. Jimmy Graham Giants Victor Cruz vs. Jason Pierre-Paul
Panthers Cam Newton vs. Steve Smith Cowboys Jason Witten vs. DeMarcus Ware
Buccaneers Josh Freeman vs. LeGarrette Blount Redskins Brian Orakpo vs. Ryan Kerrigan

The Madden NFL 13 cover vote marks the third-consecutive year that EA SPORTS has asked fans to help shape the face of the Madden NFL franchise through a cover athlete voting campaign.  It also marks the second year of its collaboration with ESPN’s SportsNation.

Madden NFL 13 is developed in Orlando, Florida by EA Tiburon.  For more information about Madden NFL 13, please visit: http://www.ea.com/madden-nfl. To download assets pertaining to the Madden NFL 13 please visit http://maddennfl13.newslinevine.com.

All player participation has been facilitated by National Football League Players Incorporated, the licensing and marketing subsidiary of the NFL Players Association.

EA SPORTS™ is one of the leading sports entertainment brands in the world, with top-selling videogame franchises, award-winning interactive technology, global videogame competitions and breakthrough digital experiences. EA SPORTS delivers experiences that ignite the emotions of sport through industry-leading sports simulation videogames, including Madden NFL football, FIFA Soccer, NHL® hockey, NBA basketball, NCAA® Football, Fight Night boxing, EA SPORTS MMA and Tiger Woods PGA TOUR® golf, and EA SPORTS Active.

For more information about EA SPORTS, including news, video, blogs, forums and game apps, please visit www.easports.com to connect, share and compete.

About Electronic Arts

Electronic Arts (NASDAQ:EA) is a global leader in digital interactive entertainment. The Company’s game franchises are offered as both packaged goods products and online services delivered through Internet-connected consoles, personal computers, mobile phones and tablets. EA has more than 100 million registered players and operates in 75 countries.

In fiscal 2011, EA posted GAAP net revenue of $3.6 billion. Headquartered in Redwood City, California, EA is recognized for critically acclaimed, high-quality blockbuster franchises such as The Sims™, Madden NFL, FIFA Soccer, Need for Speed™, Battlefield™, and Mass Effect™. More information about EA is available at http://info.ea.com.

EA SPORTS, EA SPORTS Active, The Sims and Need for Speed are trademarks of Electronic Arts Inc. Mass Effect is a trademark of EA International (Studio and Publishing) Ltd.  Battlefield is a trademark of EA Digital Illusions CE AB.  John Madden, NFL, FIFA, NHL, NBA, NCAA, Tiger Woods, and PGA TOUR are trademarks of their respective owners and used with permission.  Twitter is a registered trademark of Twitter, Inc.  All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners.

Officially Licensed Product of National Football League Players Incorporated.

About SportsNation

SportsNation is a live sports television show born from the Internet, fueled by fan interaction and focused on fun.  The show, which has the youngest and most male audience on the ESPN network, features discussions of the day’s hottest sports topics but also smaller stories that generate buzz on the Web but are overlooked by other shows.  Feeding off the theory that if two heads are better than one, 200,000 heads are better than two, SportsNation engages hundreds of thousands of sports fans across the country via ESPN.com’s SportsNation page (http://espn.go.com/sportsnation/).

About ESPN Games and EA

ESPN’s long-standing relationship with EA produces deep brand integrations into console gaming titles such as EA SPORTS NCAA Football 12 and Fight Night Champion.  Additionally, the relationship in 2011 produced the biggest ESPN poll vote ever for the Madden NFL 12 cover vote, logging nearly 13 million votes, the most ESPN votes ever for a joint collaboration.  The Emmy award-winning EA Virtual Playbook also most recently extended to boxing and golf in 2011.

###

PLAY-IN ROUND VOTING THRU FACEBOOK & OPEN WEB

Thanks for your interest in SportsNation’s Madden NFL 13 Cover Vote.

EA Sports and ESPN’s SportsNation have chosen two players from each NFL team to be included in a social play-in round for the Madden NFL 13 cover.

Starting March 7th on SportsNation’s Facebook page and on voting matchups called ‘sapplets’ or ‘widgets’ embedded across open web (info below), fans will be able to vote on matchups from each NFL team to send one representative into the final bracket of 32 players at ESPN.com/MaddenVote on March 21st.

If you choose to embed one of the 32 individual voting ‘sapplets’, you can use the next page that includes all 32 embed codes for all 32 NFL teams. They post to your site much like a YouTube clip and can increase time spent on your site as well as traffic by generating debate about matchups.

The social Play-in vote launches on Wednesday, March 7th and closes two week later on Wednesday, March 21st. The Facebook tab and voting ‘sapplets’ will be live during those two weeks.

CHEAT SHEET:

WAY TO EMBED:

  • Go to page 2. Find your team.
  • Copy the embed code.
  • Paste the embed code onto your website where you would embed a YouTube clip.
  • The voting platform is ready and interactive on your page!
  • Please Note: do NOT embed on Tumblr and do NOT change the height & width

Canvas

NEW embed Code

49ers Vote

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Chiefs Vote

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Broncos Vote

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Chargers Vote

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Raiders Vote

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Cardinals Vote

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Rams Vote

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Seahawks Vote

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Dolphins Vote

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Jets Vote

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Bills Vote

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Patriots Vote

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Giants Vote

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Redskins Vote

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Eagles Vote

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Cowboys Vote

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Texans Vote

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Colts Vote

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Titans Vote

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Jaguars Vote

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Falcons Vote

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Panthers Vote

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Buccaneers Vote

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Saints Vote

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Browns Vote

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Ravens Vote

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Bengals Vote

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Steelers Vote

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Vikings Vote

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Lions Vote

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Bears Vote

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Packers Vote

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Don’t Stop Believin’: An introspective look at the future of the Ravens, Steelers, and Redskins

Posted on 27 February 2012 by Brandon Eyring


 

The 2011 NFL season left fans of local teams in disbelief. The Ravens, Steelers and Redskins all did not meet expectations. For Ravens fans, their worst nightmare was realized in the final minute of the AFC Championship. Not only did Lee Evans shove a dagger to the chest of the organization when he dropped the winning touchdown, Raven Nation was stunned to the core when Billy Cundiff, Pro Bowl place kicker, pushed his potential game-tying kick wide left. Some cursed, some stood motionless, all were trying to take in the most unimaginable end to a season for Raven fans. The season was over in Baltimore, just like that. Wounds of recent playoff heartbreaks were ripped open.

The Ravens archrival suffered similar shock and awe when they were “Tebowed” in the opening round of the playoffs. Despite their 12-4 record, the defending AFC champion Steelers, although injury plagued, succumbed to the 8-8 Denver “Tebows”, I mean Broncos.

Washington Redskin fans have been used to losing for over 20 years, culminating merely six winning seasons in that time span. It was no surprise, but still upsetting, to ‘Skins fans that had to witness another embarrassing season from their team, finishing a measly 5-11 after starting a promising 3-1.

But that is the glass half empty perspective. Let’s mix in a pinch of optimism to the proverbial Kool-Aid: The Ravens finished 13-5, won the AFC North division for the 3rd time in last 8 years, and swept their archrival Pittsburgh Steelers. Many Ravens fans say sweeping the Steelers makes this season complete regardless of playoff woes. Beside the point of a good season, those types of statements should illustrate the intensity of the Pittsburgh-Baltimore rivalry.

 

Fans of the Steel Curtain can be proud that their team the finished with the 3rd best record in the AFC at 12-5, sent seven elite players to Hawai’i for the annual Pro Bowl, and can boast they beat the AFC champion New England Patriots (unlike their rival Ravens) 25-19 in week 8. The dominant play of speedster Mike Wallace at receiver is another plus for Steeler Nation looking into the future. The Pro Bowl wide-out caught 72 balls for 1,193 yards and has given the Steelers a versatile deep threat that demands the respect of every secondary in the league. His play tends to move defenders out of the box leaving more holes for halfbacks Rashad Mendenhall, Mewelde Moore, and Isaac Redman. Mike Wallace will continue to be a huge part of their offense in years to come, despite owner Art Rooney’s plea for a more “blue collar” running style offense, because he forces defenses to gameplan for his deep threat.

Now onto the Super Bowl champion Washington Redskins. Do not be alarmed, I understand how ridiculous that statement sounds, but it is the humorous statement you will hear from diehard ‘Skins fans looking to extract any bit of optimism from this season, because they did in fact sweep the true Super Bowl champion New York Giants. The Redskins swept them in decisive victories: 28-14 at home and 23-10 in the Meadowlands. Beating a Super Bowl champion is something to brag about for Redskins fans amongst their buddies. Many Redskin fans gain a sense of pride and hope in their team upon such an accomplishment because it makes them believe in the potential for the team going into the future. Perhaps the Redskins are only a player, or ten, away from a serious playoff contender? Maybe having a good quarterback could get them over the hump? *cough, cough, RG3? cough, cough*

The future of all three teams is bright. A few key players in certain positions can be the defining move to putting their team in the Super Bowl. For the Ravens, I am assuming free agent Ray Rice will resign with the team as contract negotiations are currently underway leaving the biggest concerns to be on the offensive line, with wide receiver and pass rusher being far seconds. Ravens Pro Bowl center, and Walter Payton NFL Man of the Year recipient, Matt Birk is expected to retire after 14 seasons in the league. Former Pro Bowl center Andre Gurode was snatched up before the season started, and was versatile on the O-line, filling in nicely when a few of the starters went down with injuries throughout the year. But, he is now a free agent and is probably out the door, although Gurode has hinted he enjoyed his stay with the Ravens and would like to continue with the team. We will have to wait and see how the picture unfolds, but it is my guess that Gurode would start at center if he resigns. Left guard is another position of worry for the Ravens. Their Pro Bowl starter Ben Grubbs is a free agent and is expected to cash in big from a team outside of Baltimore, where that team is remains to be seen. Regardless, his loss would leave a huge hole in the offensive line, unlike the hole Raven fans are used to him making. Whether through the draft, or free agency, the Ravens are going to have to bring in a new guy that can fill the shoes of Grubbs if he does not get franchise tagged. The franchise tag is the only option I can predict for Baltimore to keep Grubbs at this point.

Cordy Glenn, guard from Georgia, and Kevin Zeitler, from Wisconsin, are two names that come to mind to should still be on the board for the Ravens in the first or second round. All-American David DeCastro from Stanford would be the ultimate steal of the draft if he slips to 29th, he is drawing comparisons to future Hall of Famer Steve Hutchinson from the Minnesota Vikings. However, it is likely he will go in the middle of the first round.

If Ozzie Newsome, Baltimore Ravens general manager who makes all player personal decisions, decides to address their other issues, here is how the draft may play out: linebacker Dont’a Hightower from National Champion Alabama in the first round is a very likely possibility. The All-American would address pass rushing needs and solidify the linebacker corp for years to come. Even Travis Lewis from Oklahoma in the second round is a name to be considered.

If the Ravens decide to go in a separate direction, and if he is still on the board at number 29, Kendall Wright from Baylor could be playing in purple next season. Wright was Heisman Trophy winner Robert Griffin III’s favorite target this past season, submitting staggering numbers including 108 receptions with 1663 receiving yards for 14 touchdowns. He would provide an outstanding third option for Joe Flacco to complement number one receiver Anquan Boldin and rookie sensation Torrey Smith. Two other wide receivers to look out for in the draft is Mohamed Sanu out of Rutgers, who caught 115 passes and amassed 1206 yards with 7 touchdowns, could be a second round pick, also keep an eye on Oklahoma WR Ryan Broyles. Although he tore his ACL in a game against Texas A&M earlier in the past college season, he may be one of the best wide receivers to ever play college football. Broyles is the FBS record holder of career receptions with 349; keep in mind he missed half of his senior season! If the Ravens could snag him in the second or possibly third round, his upside is too undeniable to pass on.

The Pittsburgh Steelers have had one group that has held them back for a number of years: offensive line. Repairing their Achilles Heel should be the main focus this offseason. Lack of depth, and just lack of adequate football players, has hampered the Steeler offense. Their best weapons are their speedy receivers, and Big Ben shouldn’t have to constantly make the incredible scramble plays he is known for in order to complete the majority of his passes. The risk of injury is too great for the 6’5” 240 pound QB, which showed when he suffered a high ankle sprain against the lowly Cleveland Browns. If the Steelers offense wants to make any progression, OL needs to be addressed. Particularly tackle and guard (Maurkice Pouncey is a stud at center).  At tackle, Willie Colon, their best offensive linemen before the arrival of Pounecy, sat on injured reserve for an entire season once again after tearing his tricep muscle. Johnathon Scott practiced new ways to get beat by defenders at his left tackle position throughout 2011. Max Starks had to fill in for Scott after only the second game in the season. This was a shock considering Starks missed the entire 2010 season with a neck injury, decided to show up at training plus-400 pounds, and Pittsburgh sent him packing, later asking him to come back when he lost significant weight and replaced Scott at left tackle. Starks played surprisingly well only to suffer what many believe to be a career ending injury to his ACL at the end of the season. Amongst the negative, the only possible bright spot for the Steelers at tackle may be from rookie Marcus Gilbert. He filled in nicely for Colon at the beginning of the season and many fans believe he is the heir apparent at left tackle.

When you look to the offensive guard position on the Pittsburgh Steelers, they have three currently on the roster, and none of them are very proficient at their craft compared to others around the league. They will have to improve this position during the NFL draft. If I were in charge of the Pittsburgh Steelers draft team, my biggest look would be to Georgia guard Cordy Glenn as I have already mentioned. He was one of the best run-blocker in college football this season and would fit perfectly in the future scheme of the Steelers since they’re trying to reclaim their “blue collar” image on offense by predominantly running the football.

If Glenn is off the board by pick 21, or the Steelers decide to answer a few of their other position needs, look for Michigan State defensive tackle Jerel Worthy to replace Chris Hoke and a one-foot-out-the-door Casey Hampton. Worthy is exactly the type of player needed to play in the Steeler 3-4 defensive scheme. He has the ability to shed blocks and demand multiple blockers, which would free the stellar linebackers to make plays.

The only other true need for Pittsburgh is inside linebacker. Lawrence Timmons is going to be a great player in the NFL for years to come, but James Farrior and Larry Foote are showing their age after 15 and 10 seasons in the league, respectively. Both of their contracts expire after the 2012-2013 season, so it is very likely the Steelers may want to look for life after Foote and Farrior. A great pick for Steel City in the third round could be Keenan Robinson, linebacker out of Texas. Robinson has tremendous speed from sideline to sideline and pursues ball carriers until they are on the ground. He would provide a lot of run support and is especially proficient at stretching runs to the outside. The beauty of this pick is Pittsburgh does not have to play him right away so he can learn how to be a NFL linebacker from some of the leagues best.

Redskins, I have not forgotten about you!

There are a lot of interesting possibilities for the Washington Redskins this offseason. First and foremost, the Redskins need a quarterback. Rex Grossman (16 TD’s, 20 INT’s) and John Beck (2 TD’s, 4 INT’s) are not helping their team win football games, in fact their horrendous performance is perhaps the reason the Redskins played so poorly this past season. Understanding the ‘Skins need a new signal caller, why not bring in the best? The possibility of all-universe quarterback Peyton Manning following the precedent of great QB’s playing out their career with a new team (Montana with Chiefs, Unitas with Chargers, Namath with Rams, etc.) has sparked a lot of interest in Washington.

Besides their obvious needs to attain a quality quarterback, the Redskins will have to give him weapons. WR Jabar Gaffney (68 rec, 947 yds, 5 TDs), TE Fred Davis (59 rec, 796 yds, 3 TDs), and WR Santana Moss (46 rec, 584, 4 TDs) were the leading receivers in Washington this past season. Daniel Snyder and Co. will need to find better-quality threats if they are to make a run at the playoffs. Sanu could be an option in the second round of the draft, but head coach Mike Shanahan will look to improve the tight end situation.

Fred Davis is one failed drug test from sitting out an entire season after being suspended four games from multiple failed drug tests, and Chris Cooley missed most of 2011 with a broken finger and bum knee. In this day and age of the NFL, athletic tight ends are at a premium. To a successful offensive team in the NFL having a dominant tight end is necessary. Note the Patriot’s Rob Gronkowski (90 rec, 1327 yds, 17 TDs), the 15-2 Green Bay Packer’s Jermichael Finley (55 rec, 767 yds, 8 TDs) and the top passing offense in NFL history New Orleans Saint’s Jimmy Graham (99 rec, 1310 yds, 11 TDs). With that said, Washington will give Clemson TE Dwayne Allen a good look in the 2nd/3rd round. He has a big 6’4” 255 pound frame which makes him a strong, solid athlete with good hands. He is an outstanding talent that can be used in a bunch of ways under offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan.

As far as the 6th overall pick, I am really not sold on Robert Griffin III being taken by the Redskins for a few reasons. First, RG3 will be playing much better defenses than in the Big 12 which only featured one top 25 ranked defense. Second, there has been a tendency for running-oriented quarterbacks throughout NFL history to bust. Running QB’s to fail to develop their passing skills because they crutch on their running ability when plays break down. Third, the Redskins have been unsuccessful for a number of years on offense, and an experimental talent with limited weapons is asking for a major bust in RG3. Lastly, he surprisingly struggles in big games. I say surprisingly because one would not expect a Heisman trophy winner to be under such a label. But examining his record shows the truth; he threw two interceptions with only one touchdown against the conference champion Oklahoma State Cowboys, which was a repeat performance (two INT’s, one TD) of Baylor’s game in 2010 versus then conference champion Oklahoma Sooners. No doubt Griffin had tremendous performances in college, noting his five touchdown game against TCU to start the season, but he has a considerable drop in production on the biggest stage. It leaves me with an uneasy feeling for RG3’s future if the Redskins draft him when he will be pitted against NFL defenses each week.

Washington should either trade their high draft pick to accumulate more draft picks to better suit all their tremendous needs. But, if they decide to use the pick, WR’s Justin Blackmon for Oklahoma State or Alshon Jeffery out of South Carolina would be tremendous weapons for any QB Washington decides to add to their roster. With a premiere weapon in their arsenal, the Redskins could draft a quarterback in the second round in the nature of Boise State QB Kellen Moore, Arizona QB Nick Foles, or an intriguing possibility of pairing Blackmon with his college quarterback from Oklahoma State Brandon Weedon. Both would already possess remarkable chemistry from their time in college.

All in all, the Raven’s, Steeler’s, and Redskin’s front offices have a lot of work to do this offseason. Like I said, they are merely a few players away at key position at being the envy of the NFL.

 

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Ravens Among Super Bowl XLVII Favorites

Posted on 06 February 2012 by WNST Staff

Courtesy of Bovada, (www.Bovada.lv, Twitter: @BovadaLV). Included below are 2013 Super Bowl odds, updated odds on where Peyton Manning ends up, and a quote from Bovada.lv Sportsbook Manager, Kevin Bradley on why next season’s SB odds where so tough to make.

2013 SUPER BOWL XLVII ODDS

 

Green Bay Packers                    6/1

 

New England Patriots                 7/1

 

New Orleans Saints                   8/1

 

Philadelphia Eagles                    12/1

 

Pittsburgh Steelers                    12/1

 

Houston Texans                         12/1

 

Baltimore Ravens                       14/1

 

New York Giants                        15/1

 

San Diego Chargers                   16/1

 

New York Jets                           16/1

 

San Francisco 49ers                  18/1

 

Dallas Cowboys                         18/1

 

Detroit Lions                              18/1

 

Atlanta Falcons                         22/1

 

Chicago Bears                           30/1

 

Arizona Cardinals                       30/1

 

Miami Dolphins                          35/1

 

Cincinnati Bengals                     40/1

 

Indianapolis Colts                       50/1

 

Tennessee Titans                       40/1

 

Oakland Raiders                        50/1

 

Carolina Panthers                      50/1

 

Denver Broncos                         50/1

 

Kansas City Chiefs                    50/1

 

Seattle Seahawks                      60/1

 

Buffalo Bills                               60/1

 

Washington Redskins                60/1

 

Minnesota Vikings                     75/1

 

St. Louis Rams                          75/1

 

Tampa Bay Buccaneers             75/1

 

Cleveland Browns                       100/1

 

Jacksonville Jaguars                   100/1

 

What team will Peyton Manning be a member of for game 1 of the 2013 Regular Season?

 

Arizona Cardinals                       2/1

 

Washington Redskins                5/2

 

Miami Dolphins                          3/1

 

New York Jets                           7/2

 

Indianapolis Colts                       7/1

 

“With Peyton Manning’s situation it has made setting next year’s Super Bowl Odds very difficult and a reason you will see teams like Arizona and Miami at lower odds than what they would be in case Manning signs there.  As for the Colts, even though there is a slim chance he stays they are at 50-1 but if he does leave will shoot up to around 100-1 and if stays would drop down to around 15-1, just goes to show the importance of a guy like Peyton.”

 

-Kevin Bradley, Bovada.lv Sportsbook Manager

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Wrapping Up A Week at Radio Row in Indy

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Wrapping Up A Week at Radio Row in Indy

Posted on 04 February 2012 by Glenn Clark

It was another incredible week of Super Bowl coverage for us here at AM1570 WNST.net. Both “The Morning Reaction” with Drew Forrester and Luke Jones as well as “The Reality Check” with Glenn Clark emanated from Radio Row at Super Bowl XLVI in Indianapolis every day. “Nasty” Nestor Aparicio was also part of the daily fun.

In case you missed anything we did, here is a list of the guest segments available for your consumption right now in the BuyAToyota.com Audio Vault here at WNST.net.

-Adam Sandler (Actor)

-Matt Birk (Baltimore Ravens C)

-Chuck Pagano (Indianapolis Colts Head Coach, former Ravens DC)

-Curt Schilling (Former Baltimore Orioles/Boston Red Sox/Arizona Diamondbacks/Philadelphia Phillies Pitcher)

-Shannon Sharpe (Former Baltimore Ravens/Denver Broncos Hall of Fame TE, CBS)

-AJ Green (Cincinnati Bengals WR)
-Ingrid & Sarah Harbaugh (Wives of John & Jim Harbaugh)

-Jim Schwartz (Detroit Lions Head Coach)

-Mike Smith (Atlanta Falcons Head Coach)

-Marcus Allen (Hall of Fame RB)
-Larry The Cable Guy (Comedian)

-Priest Holmes (Former Baltimore Ravens/Kansas City Chiefs RB)

-Vanilla Ice (Musician/Actor)
-Will Forte (Actor/Comedian/Saturday Night Live alum)

-Lynn Swann (Former Pittsburgh Steelers Hall of Fame WR)
-Greg Ballard (Mayor of Indy)

-Dustin Keller (New York Jets TE)
-Jason Taylor (Former Miami Dolphins DE)
-Frank Caliendo (Comedian)

-Jay Mohr (Actor/Comedian)

-David Feherty (Golf Channel)

-Mike Haynes (Former New England Patriots Hall of Fame CB)
-Brian Billick (Former Baltimore Ravens coach FOX/NFL Network)
-Herm Edwards (Former New York Jets/Kansas City Chiefs coach, ESPN)

-Dick Vermeil (Former Super Bowl winning St. Louis Rams coach)
-Marv Levy (Buffalo Bills Hall of Fame coach)

-Joe Theismann (Former Washington Redskins QB, NFL Network)

-Lorenzo Neal (Former Baltimore Ravens/San Diego Chargers FB)
-Rich Gannon (Former Oakland Raiders QB, CBS)
-Antonio Pierce (Former NY Giants LB)

-Jack Youngblood (Los Angeles Rams Hall of Fame DE)

-Dhani Jones (Former Cincinnati Bengals LB)

-Robbie Gould (Chicago Bears Kicker)
-Morten Anderson (Former New Orleans Saints/Atlanta Falcons Kicker)
-Bonnie Bernstein (ESPN/University of Maryland alum)
-Peter King (SI/NBC)
-Lesley Visser (CBS)
-Sal Paolantonio (ESPN)
-Laura Kaeppeler (Miss America 2012)

-Chrissy Teigen (SI Swimsuit Issue model)
-Will Witherspoon (Tennessee Titans LB)

(More on Page 2…)

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Top 10 Baseball Distractions

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Top 10 Baseball Distractions

Posted on 23 January 2012 by Glenn Clark

Honorable Mention: NBA-Charlotte Bobcats @ Washington Wizards (Wednesday 7pm from Verizon Center live on Comcast SportsNet), Washington Wizards @ Houston Rockets (Friday 8pm from Houston live on Comcast SportsNet), Washington Wizards @ Charlotte Bobcats (Saturday 7pm from Charlotte live on Comcast SportsNet), Chicago Bulls @ Washington Wizards (Monday 7pm from Verizon Center live on Comcast SportsNet/NBA TV); Women’s College Basketball: Virginia Tech @ Maryland (Thursday 7pm Comcast Center); Golf: PGA Tour Farmers Insurance Open (Thursday & Friday 3pm live on Golf Channel, Saturday & Sunday 3pm live on CBS. All golf from La Jolla, CA); Monster Jam (Friday-Sunday Verizon Center); Boxing: Friday Night Fights-Ruslan Provodnikov vs. David Torres (Friday 9pm from Airway Heights, WA live on ESPN2); High School Basketball: Parkville @ Perry Hall (Wednesday 6:30pm), Perry Hall @ Kenwood (Friday 7pm)

10. Miranda Lambert (Thursday 7:30pm 1st Mariner Arena); Matt Nathanson (Sunday 6:30pm Rams Head Live); Marc Broussard (Monday 8pm Rams Head on Stage); Big Head Todd and the Monsters (Friday 8pm 9:30 Club); Ryan Adams/Jason Isbell (Tuesday 7:30pm Strathmore); Widespread Panic (Tuesday/Wednesday 8pm Fillmore Silver Spring); FUEL (Saturday 1:30pm Sandy Point State Park)

I feel as though I really shouldn’t admit how much I enjoy this song “Faster” by Matt Nathanson. It’s just that I can’t help it…

Ditto for “Rocksteady” by Marc Broussard…

Ryan Adams has made about a million songs in his life. None top this…

I saw FUEL like five times between 2000-2001. Make fun all you want, but you know you’ll be singing along to this…

9. Maryland State Police Polar Bear Plunge (Friday-Saturday Sandy Point State Park); Baltimore Winter Restaurant Week (Tuesday-Sunday); “Luck” premieres on HBO (Sunday 9pm); 50/50” and “Real Steel” available on Blu-Ray/DVD (Tuesday)

You know who’s part of Restaurant Week? A spot I can’t name (because they’re not a sponsor) but who makes the best salad in Charm City…

You know who it is. And you know it’s fantastic.

Also, did everyone see 50/50? I thought it was one of the best movies of 2011 (Clip NSFW)…

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The Reality Check Final Regular Season NFL Power Rankings

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The Reality Check Final Regular Season NFL Power Rankings

Posted on 04 January 2012 by Glenn Clark

Glenn Clark’s Rankings…

32. St. Louis Rams (Last Week:  32)

At least Indy has their coach?

31. Indianapolis Colts (LW:  31)

Best loss ever.

30. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (LW:  26)

This was historic.

29. Minnesota Vikings (LW:  30)

I hope they have faith in Christian Ponder.

28. Cleveland Browns (LW:  28)

You’d imagine they’ll spend a lot of time looking at a certain Heisman Trophy winner.

27. Washington Redskins (LW:  27)

Need a lot.

26. Jacksonville Jaguars (LW:  29)

What if Blaine Gabbert really isn’t any good?

25. Buffalo Bills (LW:  24)

That win over the Pats earlier in the season could go down as the last great moment in Buffalo Bills history.

24. Carolina Panthers (LW:  23)

Defense needed.

23. Miami Dolphins (LW:  21)

The Matt Moore situation is intriguing.

22. Kansas City Chiefs (LW:  22)

Neither Kyle Orton nor Matt Cassel is a long-term option.

21. Seattle Seahawks (LW:  17)

Marshawn Lynch is a nice piece to build around at least.

20. Arizona Cardinals (LW:  20)

Step 1-who’s your quarterback?

19. New York Jets (LW:  16)

I think they have to stick with Mark Sanchez.

18. Chicago Bears (LW:  25)

They have real reason to have high hopes for 2012.

17. Tennessee Titans (LW:  15)

Matt Hasselbeck might be the better quarterback, but they’ll need to turn to Jake Locker next season.

16. Oakland Raiders (LW:  12)

This Hue Jackson/new GM situation could be interesting.

15. Dallas Cowboys (LW:  13)

I’m not sure how they go about improving.

14. Philadelphia Eagles (LW:  19)

Right move to bring back Andy Reid…I think.

13. San Diego Chargers (LW:  18)

How in the hell can Norv Turner stay employed?

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Let’s Back Our Way Into the 15-7-0

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Let’s Back Our Way Into the 15-7-0

Posted on 02 January 2012 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. Matt Flynn may have just earned himself a boatload of money Sunday.

Perhaps Flynn’s success had much more to do with the Green Bay Packers’ scheme & wide receivers and even the Detroit Lions’ less than exceptional defense than the former LSU quarterback himself. But as he enters free agency, Flynn may have just made himself a viable option for teams that won’t enter 2012 with Andrew Luck on their roster.

Of course, 80 of his 480 yards and one of his five touchdowns came on this play to Ryan Grant. I’m pretty sure Ryan Chell could have made this throw…

The Packers can sit back and wait to find out who they’ll play in the divisional round while the Lions get to visit the Superdome next weekend. But I’d say it’s pretty much a toss-up as to who has the more difficult road ahead.

In an unrelated story, the Packers went with Pat Lee as their kick returner for the New Year’s Day game. He did something stupid…

And one more-here’s Packers LB Brad Jones handling a fan who ran out onto Lambeau Field…

2. The New England Patriots scored 49 unanswered points Sunday. I’m not really sure how to follow that up.

Much like the Fins a week earlier, the Buffalo Bills worked Charm City into a lather with hopes of ruining the Pats’ run to the Number 1 seed. Also much like the Fins, the Bills for some reason must have thought New England would quit when they fell behind early. But after spotting the Bills 21 points, the Patriots would go on to score the next 49.

But they can’t possibly win the AFC of course because their defense isn’t good enough.

Right.

You’ll see a lot of funny things in 2012. I’ll go ahead and guess that there won’t be many funnier than this Drayton Florence flop…

Also of note in this game was Bills WR Stevie Johnson, who exposed a “Happy New Year” message on an undershirt after scoring a touchdown…

It’s a shame Tom Brady didn’t have a “Happy 28 Point Beatdown” undershirt to respond with. For a semi-decent receiver, Johnson is about a full-fledged clown.

3. I still have no idea why he’s headed to Arkansas State, but Gus Malzahn made the Chick-Fil-A Bowl a lot of fun to watch.

Before departing his Offensive Coordinator gig at Auburn, Malzahn pulled out a bunch of tricks (including a Statue of Liberty Play of all things) to help beat Virginia in the Georgia Dome…

Elsewhere on New Year’s Eve Levi LaVallee and Robbie Maddison were doing extreme sport jumping of some sort on ESPN that may or may not have been amazing. None of us really know and none of us really bothered to watch. But technically it happened!

How did I spend my NYE you ask? At a place I can’t name because they aren’t a sponsor. They ARE however the home of Sweet Potato Tots and the “Billy Goat’s Gruff”…

It was a 14 out of 10.

4. There’s something about David Akers throwing a touchdown that I really enjoy.

I’d show you video of the play, but it’s not available on YouTube. Instead, those of you who REALLY wanna see it can check it out here and the rest of you can look at this picture of Elsa Hosk. We’ll all meet back at the local saloon.

The San Francisco 49ers clinched the #2 seed in the NFC thanks to their win over the St. Louis Rams. In Baltimore, we just want to say Thank You again. We can’t really say it enough.

The Rams will fire Steve Spagnuolo according to reports. Also according to reports, it will be cold this week.

5. Credit Gary Kubiak for not kicking an extra point Sunday. Now it’s time to go win a Wild Card playoff game.

The Houston Texans didn’t need to beat the Tennessee Titans Sunday for any tangible reason. They didn’t, thanks to Kubiak’s decision to go for 2 late (a decision that backfired after a Joel Dreessen false start and a snap sailed over the head of QB Jake Delhomme-who replaced a banged up T.J. Yates). Let’s take a look at the video board…

Earlier in the game, Bryan Braman made an awesome play…

The Texans host the Cincinnati Bengals in the first round of the postseason. If they win, the Texans visit M&T Bank Stadium in the divisional round. I would think most of us would be pretty happy with that matchup, especially considering the Steelers could be another option.

6. Texas A&M’s Ryan Swope is probably the best receiver you didn’t talk about this season.

Here’s video of the Aggies’ win over Northwestern in the Meineke Car Care Bowl of Texas. You voted it “the video I’m least likely to watch this week” in an informal poll I just took…

Here was Wildcats coach Pat Fitzgerald’s reaction when he found out I was going to show the highlights of the game…

7. For as much as we laughed at them this season, the Philadelphia Eagles look capable of being dangerous in 2012.

Of course, that’s the only if Michael Vick stays healthy…and we all know that’s a significant “if.”

The highlight of the day in Philly happened well before Philly kicked the tar out of the Washington Redskins. It happened when Skins OC Kyle Shanahan tried to pump his team up before the game. It was HILARIOUS…

Kyle Shanahan makes Cam Cameron look popular.

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