Tag Archive | "Tavares Gooden"

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Part 2 – Aftermath of a meltdown…who stays, who goes, now what?

Posted on 17 January 2011 by Drew Forrester

What do you do when you’ve been to the post-season three straight years and you can’t make it to the Super Bowl?

You could do what the Orioles do every off-season when they’re lamenting how they once again went 65-97 and finished so far back in the A.L. East race they were lapped heading into September: You could complain about being in the AFC…or the AFC North.

But that’s not the Ravens style. The Ravens aren’t complainers. They’re in the AFC and they’re in the AFC North and they need to figure out the combination to this lock the Steelers have applied to them over the last three years.

And then you have the Colts. They’ll always be around with what’s-his-name at quarterback. Same with the Patriots. They’re not going anywhere, either. The Jets look solid. The Chargers, Raiders and Chiefs are all worthy of at least keeping an eye on.

So what do the Ravens do on the heels of another playoff dismissal at the hands of the Steelers? First, please understand I’m making all of these assessments and reactions based on the notion that there WILL be football played in 2011. If the CBA issue alters the NFL’s course of business next season, there’s obviously a chance some of the changes either WILL or WON’T happen based on the league’s new financial structure.

For starters, let’s get the coordinators discussion over and done with so we can move on to other pressing matters that are actually up for discussion.

As I reported via Twitter on Sunday around 8am, Ravens sources tell me John Harbaugh will retain all three of his coordinators in 2011.

That word was passed on to me by two team executives on Saturday night. On both occasions, the reaction was swift and similar in content. “John is very satisfied with his coaching staff and the coordinators aren’t going anywhere, unless, of course, they don’t want to return here.”

It would seem, with that information at our disposal, that Cam Cameron, Greg Mattison and Jerry Rosburg will all be on staff next season.

I opined a few weeks back that I thought Cameron would NOT be retained in 2011 if the Ravens didn’t make the Super Bowl. Personally, if I ran the club? Truth? I wouldn’t bring Cameron back. I think he showed time and time again that he either doesn’t have the right feel for the game from a down-and-distance standpoint or he’s just too much of a gambler for my liking when the clock and the score dictates a more conservative approach. Both of those examples played out on Saturday in Pittsburgh, where he followed through with an attacking mindset in the 3rd quarter even with Baltimore pinned deep in their own territory and losing momentum by the play.

But I don’t run the team and my opinion doesn’t mean jack-squat. John Harbaugh hires and fires his coaching staff and it appears he’s bringing his three coordinators back in 2011.

The ONLY point of contention with Harbaugh and his staff would be intervention from Steve Bisciotti, but one team source indicated on Saturday that Bisciotti too is pleased with Harbaugh and his various coaches and department heads.

“Now is not the time to overreact,” said a team executive in the hours after Saturday’s loss. “Having the owner step in and upset the apple cart after three successful seasons isn’t our way of doing things.”

OK, I’ll agree on that one. Three years ago John Harbaugh was hired to change the direction of the football team. He has done that, with help from Cameron, Mattison and Rosburg.

Now…here’s Drew’s opinion on what the Ravens need to do in 2011.

It’s simple in theory.

The Ravens need an infusion of speed.

They need a fast, stretch-the-field, reliable wide receiver.

They need a speedy, menacing defensive end who can put his hand in the dirt and chase after the quarterback.

And they’re in need of linebackers who can not only play the pass, but can chase the quarterback too when the blitz call has their number on it. Dannell Ellerbe, Jameel McClain and Tavares Gooden — all are decent-enough pro players. But none are the answer to the team’s linebacking issues.

The Ravens probably need a bigger, faster number one cornerback, but their defensive woes are more connected to pass rush than secondary coverage. With all due respect to the more-than-acceptable job that Chris Carr and Josh Wilson gave in 2010, neither of those guys (continued)

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Ravens LB Dannell Ellerbe steals former alma mater rivalry to describe Steelers-Ravens: “Good, Old-Fashioned Hate”

Posted on 14 January 2011 by Ryan Chell

The week of preparation is finally over and on Saturday, the Baltimore Ravens and the Pittsburgh Steelers will hit the field and put their long-standing AFC North and divisional rivalry to the test with a chance to advance to the conference championship on the line.

The Ravens (13-4)-entered the postseason as the five-seed in the AFC playoffs-defeated the Kansas City Chiefs Sunday 30-7 on the road in their opening wild card matchup, and now along with the Jets and Patriots facing off in the other Divisional game, the Ravens are determined to get over the hump known as the Pittsburgh Steelers.

Several Ravens players joined “The Morning Reaction” this week to discuss their eagerness to punish the hated Steelers, and making the AFC Championship by beating them would make it that much more worth it.

“I know the playoff atmosphere is going to be crazy,” linebacker Dannell Ellerbe told Drew Forrester of “The Morning Reaction” earlier this week, “because when we played Pittsburgh earlier this year it was a lot like a playoff game, and that was a regular season game.”

Ellerbe has played well in the recent weeks with the injury to linebacker Tavares Gooden, giving Ellerbe more of an opportunity to showcase his skills again to coach John Harbaugh in the attempt to get out of the dreaded “doghouse”.

Punter Sam Koch also joined Drew and Glenn Clark on Thursday and re-iterated the same point.

“We’re such a closer team this year from last,” Koch said. “And it’s just a vibe that were going to go out and we’re going to do it this year. A lot of people are excited, and we’re all ready to see where we are and where we’ll end up.”

And it would get even better for the Ravens to host the AFC Championship game should the cards play out for them on Sunday.

“It will be a lot of fun,” the Ravens punter said. “It would be even nicer if the Jets beat the Patriots.”

Both Koch and Ellerbe talked about the difficulty though of playing up in a hostile environment of Heinz Field, and with the stakes higher, it makes the challenge of having a solid game of football that much harder.

Koch and Ellerbe both challenged the Ravens fans to be present, active, and lively on Saturday on the road to make it that much harder for the Steelers to concentrate on their game plan.

“We’re going to need every fan we can get there,” Koch added.”Whenever you were going to Pittsburgh or they were coming here, everybody wanted to go to the game, and everybody is cheering you on. It’s just a great atmosphere and it’s going to be a lot of fun.”

Koch compared the Pittsburgh-Ravens rivalry to the rivalries his alma mater, Nebraska, has with Oklahoma and Colorado, but times ten.

Ellerbe meanwhile compared it to his college-the University of Georgia-and its rivalry with in-state foe Georgia Tech.

The name of that rivalry game?

Good, Old-Fashioned Hate.

And while Ellerbe said he feels the same way toward the Steelers, he did admit that the rivalry takes on a bigger result in the professional leagues of football as opposed to the amateur level of college football.

“It’s different now because we’re in the NFL and more is at stake right now,” Ellerbe said.

“It would be great to get this win and get the best out of three this year and move on in the playoffs.”

WNST has you covered for Saturday’s game versus Pittsburgh! WNST-We Never Stop Talking Baltimore Sports!

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Live From Owings Mills: Carr Misses Practice, Harbaugh Says He’ll Play

Posted on 13 January 2011 by Glenn Clark

OWINGS MILLS, Md. — The Baltimore Ravens (13-4) held their final open practice Thursday before Saturday’s AFC divisional playoff showdown with the Pittsburgh Steelers (12-4) at Heinz Field.

WR Donte’ Stallworth (illness) returned to practice Thursday and was a full participant, but the news wasn’t as good for two injured Ravens.

CB Chris Carr (thigh) did not participate in practice Thursday after being listed as a limited participant Wednesday. WNST.net learned from a source Carr pulled his hamstring during Wednesday’s practice.

When asked about Carr’s status, Head Coach John Harbaugh said simply “he’ll play” before announcing he wouldn’t field any further questions about injuries.

Carr wouldn’t confirm as quickly.

“I’m feeling allright” said the cornerback. “It’s later in the year, so nobody is feeling great; I guess. I’m planning on playing. I’m doing everything to prepare the same way. Hopefully I’ll be ready to go.”

Carr wouldn’t confirm the injury was a pulled hamstring when asked by reporters.

C Matt Birk (knee) did not participate in in practice for a second straight day Thursday.

All three Ravens who missed the Wild Card round win over the Kansas City Chiefs at Arrowhead Stadium due to injury are expected to be available Saturday. WR/KR David Reed (wrist), S Tom Zbikowski (back) and LB Tavares Gooden (shoulder) were full participants for a second straight day Thursday.

For the Steelers, S Troy Polamalu (ankle) returned to practice and participated fully. CB Bryant McFadden (abdomen) was also a full participant.

DE Aaron Smith (triceps) was a limited participant.

NOTES: Hear from Harbaugh and WR TJ Houshmandzadeh now in the BuyAToyota.com Audio Vault here at WNST.net……P Sam Koch joined Drew Forrester Thursday on “The Morning Reaction” on AM1570 WNST, that chat is available in the Audio Vault as well…..TE Ed Dickson is scheduled to join Forrester Friday morning at 7:25……32 degrees and snow showers are expected in the Steel City for game time Saturday according to Weather.com/The Weather Channel……The Ravens will hold a walkthrough Friday before traveling to Pittsburgh Friday night. Friday’s walkthough is closed to the media

-G

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Live From Owings Mills: Suggs Takes Shot at Steelers With Shirt

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Live From Owings Mills: Suggs Takes Shot at Steelers With Shirt

Posted on 12 January 2011 by Glenn Clark

OWINGS MILLS, Md. — The Baltimore Ravens (13-4) returned to practice Wednesday at 1 Winning Drive, continuing preparations for Saturday’s AFC divisional playoff showdown with the Pittsburgh Steelers (12-4) at Heinz Field.

Unlike the other AFC divisional showdown this weekend, (New England Patriots-New York Jets), the buildup to the AFC North rematch had included little in the way of bulletin board material.

LB Terrell Suggs changed that Wednesday when he stepped to the podium.

suggs
(Photo property of WNST.netApologies for offensive imagery)

Suggs wore a “Hey Pittsburgh!” shirt during his media availability session Wednesday. The shirt was showing a purple bird giving the middle finger.

“(This) ain’t no message” said the Pro Bowl pass rusher. “Like I always say, I put on for my city. They rep their city and I’m repping mine.”

Suggs said the Pittsburgh-Baltimore rivalry holds a special place in his heart.

“To me, it’s definitely the best rivalry in sports. When it comes to football, it’s the most physical game of the year. It’s going to be a physical gang fight, just like the first two games were.”

According to Suggs, this wasn’t the first time the middle finger has been involved in the series.

“When we go down there, they always hit us with the ‘Number Ones’. I don’t know how they act here because I’ve been in the locker room by the time all the fans get here. I’m pretty sure we’ve been hitting them with the ‘Number Ones’.”

When asked if he was worried the shirt could give the Steelers some extra motivation, Suggs was confident in his answer.

“Do I seem worried? This game is going to be what it is regardless. It’s a physical dogfight. I’m not expecting (anything) different. This is the shirt I wore this morning, this is just the shirt I chose.”

Future Hall of Fame LB Ray Lewis was much more guarded when asked if he ‘liked’ the Steelers.

“I like pizza” said Lewis. “I like a lot of things, there’s a lot of things I don’t like. Are the Steelers in the ‘like’ or ‘don’t like’ category? Well since I’m a Baltimore person, I’m going to say ‘don’t like’.”

Lewis’ message when he saw Suggs’ shirt?

“You’re going to start a war.”

RAVENS SIGN HARDY: The Ravens have signed WR James Hardy to a reserve/future contract, per a FoxSports.com report.

Hardy was a 2nd round (41st overall) pick by the Buffalo Bills out of Indiana in the 2008 NFL Draft. He was cut by the Bills before the start of the 2010 season.

In his brief NFL career, Hardy has just 10 catches for 96 yards and two touchdowns. He was a first team All-Big Ten performer in his junior (and final) season with the Hoosiers.

As a reserve/future signing, Hardy does not go on the team’s 53 man roster and is not eligible to participate in the postseason. Instead, he will have the opportunity to make the team out of Training Camp this summer (should he remain on the roster through OTA’s).

Ravens Offensive Coordinator Cam Cameron is also an Indiana alum.

PRACTICE REPORT: All Ravens who missed the Wild Card playoff win over the Kansas City Chiefs at Arrowhead Stadium were on the practice field Wednesday.

LB Tavares Gooden (shoulder) and S Tom Zbikowski (back) were full participants. WR/KR David Reed (wrist) was not even listed on the injury report.

C Matt Birk (knee) did not participate in practice, neither did WR Donte’ Stallworth (illess). CB Chris Carr (thigh) was a limited participant with what is believed to be a pulled hamstring.

Suggs (knee) and S Ed Reed (ribs) were not listed on the injury report.

Multiple Ravens players again switched jersey numbers for Wednesday’s session. Among them was Suggs, who wore the #4 of punter Sam Koch.

For the Steelers, S Troy Polamalu (ankle) did not participate in practice Wednesday. CB Bryant McFadden (abdomen) and DE Aaron Smith (triceps) were limited participants.

NOTES: Hear from Lewis, Suggs, QB Joe Flacco, TE Todd Heap, RB Ray Rice, WR Anquan Boldin and DE Cory Redding now in the BuyAToyota.com Audio Vault here at WNST.net……Director of Player Personnel Eric DeCosta & LB Dannell Ellerbe joined Drew Forrester Wednesday on “The Morning Reaction” on AM1570 WNST, both chats are also available in the Audio Vault……Jeff Triplette will officiate Sunday’s game, his crew will include members of Ed Hochuli’s regular crew……The Ravens will hold their final open practice of the week Thursday, Head Coach John Harbaugh is scheduled to meet with reporters

-G

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Morning Reaction Tuesday Top 7 Ravens

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Morning Reaction Tuesday Top 7 Ravens

Posted on 11 January 2011 by Glenn Clark

Here are our Top 7 Baltimore Ravens from their 30-7 AFC Wild Card playoff win over the Kansas City Chiefs Sunday at Arrowhead Stadium…

Glenn Clark’s Top 7…

7. Terrence Cody

cody

6. Terrell Suggs

suggs

5. Anquan Boldin

boldin

4. Dawan Landry

landry

3. Chris Carr

carr

2. Joe Flacco

flacco

1. Todd Heap

heap

Drew Forrester’s Top 7…

7. Ray Lewis

raylewis

6. Terrence Cody

cody

5. Anquan Boldin

boldin

4. Dawan Landry

landry

3. Chris Carr

carr

2. Joe Flacco

flacco

1. Todd Heap

heap

(Most photos courtesy of the Kansas City Star)

SEASON TOTALS:


Glenn:
29. Morgan Cox (1 point)
29. Tavares Gooden (1 point)
26. David Reed (2 points)
26. Willis McGahee (2 points)
26. Le’Ron McClain (2 points)
23. Ed Dickson (3 points)
23. Marshal Yanda (3 points)
23. Kelly Gregg (3 points)
22. Ben Grubbs (4 points)
20. Terrence Cody (5 points)
20. Michael Oher (5 points)
18. TJ Houshmandzadeh (7 points)
18. Jarret Johnson (7 points)
16. Chris Carr (8 points)
16. Lardarius Webb (8 points)
15. Josh Wilson (10 points)
13. Cory Redding (12 points)
13. Fabian Washington (12 points)
12. Dawan Landry (13 points)
11. Sam Koch (17 points)
10. Billy Cundiff (18 points)
9. Todd Heap (23 points)
8. Ed Reed (25 points)
7. Derrick Mason (29 points)
5. Terrell Suggs (30 points)
5. Ray Lewis (30 points)
4. Haloti Ngata (42 points)
3. Ray Rice (46 points)
2. Anquan Boldin (49 points)
1. Joe Flacco (66 points)

Drew:
30. Ed Dickson (1 point)
30. Jason Phillips (1 point)
25. Morgan Cox (2 points)
25. TJ Houshmandzadeh (2 points)
25. Jameel McClain (2 points)
25. Brandon McKinney (2 points)
25. Dannell Ellerbe (2 points)

24. Cory Redding (3 points)
23. Marshal Yanda (4 points)

20. Willis McGahee (5 points)
20. Le’Ron McClain (5 points)
20. Michael Oher (5 points)
18. Lardarius Webb (6 points)
18. Fabian Washington (6 points)
14. Terrence Cody (8 points)
14. Tavares Gooden (8 points)
14. Josh Wilson (8 points)

14. Jarret Johnson (8 points)
12. Dawan Landry (11 points)
12. Sam Koch (11 points)
11. Todd Heap (15 points)
10. Chris Carr (19 points)
8. Ed Reed (20 points)
8. Billy Cundiff (20 points)
7. Derrick Mason (22 points)
6. Haloti Ngata (32 points)
5. Terrell Suggs (35 points)
4. Ray Lewis (36 points)
3. Anquan Boldin (37 points)
2. Ray Rice (50 points)
1. Joe Flacco (77 points)

If you missed the explanation of why these players made the list on “The Morning Reaction” Tuesday on AM1570 WNST, hit the BuyAToyota.com Audio Vault here at WNST.net!

Flexing my mic muscles since 1983…

-G

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Live From Owings Mills: Harbaugh, Ravens Face Short Week of Prep For Steelers Battle

Posted on 10 January 2011 by Glenn Clark

OWINGS MILLS, Md. — Players from the Baltimore Ravens (13-4) took Monday off, but Head Coach John Harbaugh returned to 1 Winning Drive following a 30-7 AFC Wild Card playoff win over the Kansas City Chiefs (10-7) 24 hours earlier at Arrowhead Stadium.

Harbaugh met with reporters Monday to look ahead to Saturday’s AFC Divisional Round playoff battle with the Ravens’ AFC North rival Pittsburgh Steelers (12-4) at Heinz Field.

The Steelers will come into Saturday’s game well rested, having not played since a Week 17 win over the Cleveland Browns January 2nd. The Ravens however will play Sunday just six days after their first playoff contest.

“There is definitely an advantage to having the time off from a rest perspective” the coach said Monday.

Harbaugh did argue that the Ravens could gain an advantage over the Steelers thanks to a solid performance in KC.

“There’s probably an advantage to playing from a ‘being sharp’ perspective. We’ll try to take advantage of the things that are strengths in our factor and hope the things that are strengths in their factor will be minimized by the way that we approach what we do. I’m very confident we can get our guys rested and recovered and ready to go on Saturday.”

Harbaugh also expressed his belief that the Ravens defense will benefit from having not been taxed much in the Wild Card playoff win.

“I think it’s a factor” said the Coach. “We had 40 plays. It’s better than playing 80 plays.”

The Ravens gave players off Monday (instead of the customary NFL Tuesday off-day) and delayed practice to 3:30 Tuesday afternoon to try to create more rest.

INJURY UPDATE
: Two Ravens who missed Sunday’s game probably could have been able to play, according to Harbaugh.

LB Tavares Gooden (shoulder) and WR/KR David Reed (wrist) both missed the playoff opener despite practicing in the week leading up to the game.

“We had some guys that were just more healthy” Harbaugh said Monday. “I think David can go. He’s getting better catching the ball, he made a lot of progress last week. Tavares could have played, but the more healthy probably gave us a little more at that point.”

Aside from Reed & Gooden, S Tom Zbikowski (back) also missed Sunday’s game due to injury. The Ravens reported nothing on their official postgame injury report, meaning no players left the game and were unable to return.

Harbaugh also noted the possibility S Ed Reed may miss some practice this week as he deals with the apparent death of his brother (Brian Reed) with family in Louisiana.

“We’ve left that up to Ed” said the coach. “I know that Ed knows this team inside and out. We haven’t talked to him yet today. So I think it’s going to kind of depend on the circumstances down there, what he feels he needs to do with his family. But we’ll give him a lot of leeway.”

NOTES: Hear from Harbaugh now in the BuyAToyota.com Audio Vault at WNST.net……C Matt Birk joined Drew Forrester Monday on “The Morning Reaction” on AM1570 WNST, that chat is available in the Audio Vault as well……Greg Gumbel and Dan Dierdorf will call Saturday’s game for CBS……The Ravens will return to practice Tuesday afternoon, Harbaugh is scheduled to meet with reporters following practice

-G

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Ravens-Chiefs “Purple Haze” Live Chat 1pm

Posted on 09 January 2011 by Glenn Clark

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Greetings from Arrowhead Stadium, where the Baltimore Ravens (12-4) will face the Kansas City Chiefs (10-6) in an AFC Wild Card playoff showdown. Today’s game will air live on CBS (WJZ 13 in Charm City) with Jim Nantz and Phil Simms on the call. We will be chatting about the game in our “Purple Haze” live chat, which you can join here.

The winner of today’s game will advance to face the Pittsburgh Steelers (12-4) at Heinz Field next Saturday in the AFC divisional round.

Here are today’s inactives…

RAVENS
-
DT Arthur Jones
FB Jason McKie
TE Davon Drew
TE Dennis Pitta
LB Tavares Gooden (shoulder)
S Tom Zbikowski (back)
WR David Reed (wrist)
DT Lamar Divens

CHIEFS-
WR Quinten Lawrence
FB Mike Cox
S Reshard Langford
LB Charlie Anderson
C Rudy Niswanger
WR Chris Chambers
DT Anthony Toribio
QB Tyler Palko (3rd QB)

The Chiefs are in red tops and white pants today. The Ravens are in white tops and black pants.
Mike Carey’s crew will officiate today’s game.

Come chat with us!

-G

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Live From Owings Mills: Reed’s Brother Missing, Harbaugh Reacts to Jim’s Hiring, Suggs & Ngata Questionable

Posted on 07 January 2011 by Glenn Clark

OWINGS MILLS, Md. — The Baltimore Ravens (12-4) held their final open practice Friday at 1 Winning Drive ahead of Sunday’s AFC Wild Card playoff showdown with the Kansas City Chiefs (10-6) at Arrowhead Stadium.

The brother of Ravens safety Ed Reed (Brian Reed) went missing Friday in Louisiana, according to WWL-TV in New Orleans.

The younger Reed reportedly jumped into the Mississippi River in St. Charles, La. to elude authorities. Police attempted to stop Brian Reed Friday morning when his car matched the description of a car believed to have driven another car off the road.

According to the WWL report, police believe the younger Reed may have been driving a stolen car.

When reached for comment Friday by WNST.net, a source very close to Ed Reed said the Pro Bowl safety had no comment and was continuing to gather information.

Ravens Head Coach John Harbaugh said in a Friday night conference call he had not yet had a chance to talk to his star defender.

“I love Ed Reed” said Harbaugh. “Our thoughts and our prayers are with the Reed family. We’re just praying like crazy that Ed’s brother is okay.”

INJURY REPORT: After missing practice Wednesday & Thursday, DT Haloti Ngata (thigh) and LB Terrell Suggs (knee) both returned to practice Friday.

Harbaugh said Friday “I feel good about them” and added “I think they’ll be okay” for Sunday’s game.

Suggs was a bit more coy about his status for Sunday’s game, claiming he was “50-50″ to play.

Ngata and Suggs were both listed as questionable for Sunday’s game, as were S Tom Zbikowski (back), LB Dannell Ellerbe (head), LB Tavares Gooden (shoulder), CB Josh Wilson (head) and S Ed Reed (chest). Those six were all listed as limited participants Thursday.

Five Ravens were listed as probable for Sunday’s game; LB Jameel McClain (back), C Matt Birk (knee), WR Derrick Mason (abs/ankle), OT Michael Oher (knee/ankle) and WR/KR David Reed (wrist).

For the Chiefs, G Brian Waters (illness) and WR Quinten Lawrence (illness) were listed as probable for Sunday’s game.

HARBAUGH’S BROTHER JOINS NFL RANKS: Jim Harbaugh, the younger brother of John Harbaugh and a former Ravens quarterback; agreed Friday to a five year deal to leave Stanford and become the head coach of the San Francisco 49ers.

“I’m very happy he’s not in the AFC” the elder Harbaugh said Friday night in a conference call.

With the Ravens slated to face the NFC West next season, the two coaches will have a chance to face off in Charm City.

“My dad (former Western Michigan & Western Kentucky coach Jack Harbaugh) said he’s just going to take a walk during that one” John Harbaugh joked.

Harbaugh told reporters his younger brother consulted with Ravens owner Steve Bisciotti during his decision making process.

NOTES: Hear from Harbaugh, Suggs and Oher now in the BuyAToyota.com Audio Vault here at WNST.net……OL Marshal Yanda joined Drew Forrester Friday on “The Morning Reaction” on AM1570 WNST, that chat is available in the Audio Vault as well……The Ravens practiced indoors Friday after practicing outside Wednesday & Thursday. The Ravens were in good spirits; with many players wearing each others’ jerseys. LB Ray Lewis and LB Jarret Johnson swapped jerseys, as did S Dawan Landry and DT Haloti Ngata. S Ed Reed wore QB Joe Flacco’s jersey, Suggs wore P Sam Koch’s jersey……Suggs was fined $15,000 for punching Bengals WR Jerome Simpson in the team’s Week 17 win over the Cincinnati Bengals at M&T Bank Stadium……Weather.com/The Weather Channel predicts 34 degrees and snow showers for Sunday’s game in KC……The Ravens will hold a walkthrough Saturday morning before traveling to Kansas City Saturday night. Saturday’s walkthrough will be closed to the media

-G

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Live From Owings Mills: Mattison Says Suggs, Ngata Will “Be Fine” For Sunday

Posted on 06 January 2011 by Glenn Clark

OWINGS MILLS, Md. — The Baltimore Ravens (12-4) returned to practice Thursday at 1 Winning Drive, inching closer to an AFC Wild Card playoff showdown with the Kansas City Chiefs (10-6) Sunday at Arrowhead Stadium.

After missing practice Wednesday, S Ed Reed (chest) and C Matt Birk (knee) each returned to the practice field Thursday. Reed was a limited participant, Birk participated fully.

DT Haloti Ngata (thigh) and LB Terrell Suggs (knee) did not participate in practice for a second straight day. Ngata was forced to leave the team’s Week 17 win over the Cincinnati Bengals at M&T Bank Stadium in the 2nd half.

“They’re boycotting, they don’t like the cold weather” joked Defensive Coordinator Greg Mattison about the absence of the two Pro Bowl defenders. “It’s not a concern. They’ll both be fine. It’s us knowing where we are in the season, knowing we’ve had a lot of football games. Those two guys have played so well and they understand the defense so well that if they do have a little bump or bruise or something like that it’s best to get them 100% rather than running around.”

S Tom Zbikowski (back), was a limited participant in practice for the second straight day. He’s hoping to return to the field for the first time since leaving the team’s Week 14 win over the Houston Texans at Reliant Stadium in the first half. Zbikowski was listed as a limited participant Wednesday.

Zbikowski told reporters Thursday he “feels better”, but wouldn’t commit to being ready to return to face KC.

LB Dannell Ellerbe (head), LB Tavares Gooden (shoulder), LB Jameel McClain (back) and CB Josh Wilson (head) were all limited participants in practice for a second straight day. WR Derrick Mason (abs/ankle), OT Michael Oher (knee/ankle) and WR/KR David Reed (wrist) were all full participants for a second straight day.

For the Chiefs, WR Dwayne Bowe (illness) returned to practice after missing Wednesday. Bowe was listed as a full participant. G Brian Waters (illness) missed a second straight day, WR Quinten Lawrence (illness) also missed practice Thursday.

NOTES: Hear from Mattison, Offensive Coordinator Cam Cameron, Special Teams Coordinator Jerry Rosburg and LB Jarret Johnson now in the BuyAToyota.com Audio Vault here at WNST.net……CB Cary Williams joined Drew Forrester Thursday on “The Morning Reaction” on AM1570 WNST, that chat is available in the Audio Vault as well……OL Marshal Yanda is scheduled to join Forrester Friday morning at 7:15……Mike Carey’s crew will officiate Sunday’s game……The Ravens will return to practice Friday at 1 Winning Drive, Head Coach John Harbaugh is scheduled to meet with reporters following practice

-G

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Live From Owings Mills: Haloti Ngata Named Ravens MVP

Posted on 05 January 2011 by Glenn Clark

OWINGS MILLS, Md. — The Baltimore Ravens (12-4) returned to practice Wednesday at 1 Winning Drive, continuing preparations for Sunday’s AFC Wild Card playoff battle with the Kansas City Chiefs (10-6) at Arrowhead Stadium.

DT Haloti Ngata was announced Wednesday as the Ravens 2010 Most Valuable Player award, as voted on by media members who cover the team on a daily basis. (This columnist was amongst those who voted for Ngata.)

Ngata set a career high with 5.5 sacks this season and tied career highs with 63 tackles and 5 pass deflections.

“That’s pretty cool” said Ngata after being informed he had won. “I felt like this year has been a little different just with my pass rush, I felt like I got a little better there. Hopefully I can continue to improve and just get better. Hopefully I can be around (Baltimore) more often, because I love being here, I love the guys, I love the fans.”

Ngata will be an important factor as the Ravens go up against the league’s top rushing offense (164.2 yards per game) Sunday in KC.

“(They’re a) great running team, I think everybody knows that” said Ngata. “Their O-Linemen (are) experienced, they’ve got a lot of guys who have been around and they do well moving guys around. Hopefully we can do what we want to do and stop the run first and make them a one dimensional team.”

Ngata was an important cog for a Ravens defense that was pretty good against the run (ranked 5th in the NFL), allowing just 93.9 yards per game.

“We love when teams like to run” added Ngata. “If we can take away their best thing, that’s an advantage for us.”

The Chiefs finished the year with two backs amongst the Top 20 in rushing in the league. RB Jamaal Charles (who finished 2nd in the league with 1,467 yards to go with give touchdowns) is somewhat similar to Tennessee Titans RB Chris Johnson according to Ngata.

“(He’s) just real shifty and quick to the hole. He’s just so fast and quick, he does a lot of things really well. He definitely is different from last year.”

Chiefs RB Thomas Jones also ranked in the Top 20 amongst the league’s rushing leaders; finishing with 896 yards and 6 TD’s.

“Jones is a little bigger” said Ngata. “I think he’s able to hit between the tackles a little bit better. He’s a little bit more patient than Charles.”

In their 2009 matchup at M&T Bank Stadium, the Ravens allowed the Chiefs just 29 yards rushing, including only 8 yards for Charles.

Ngata succeeds RB Ray Rice, who was voted the team’s MVP in 2009.

CARR NAMED “GOOD GUY”: In addition to Team MVP, reporters covering the team on a daily basis also voted a winner of the annual “Media Good Guy” award.

CB Chris Carr was announced as the winner of the award for the 2010 season Wednesday.

“If I won, everybody else must be pretty bad” Carr joked. “I understand that the fans want to hear truth. I try never to lie. Maybe I won’t say how I really feel, but I won’t go up there and give a lie to you guys. I always try to be insightful and truthful to everybody because fans want to hear stuff. They want to be honest and they want accountability as well. I just try to do that every week.

LB Jarret Johnson had received the award in 2009.

INJURY REPORT: Four Ravens did not participate in practice Wednesday.

C Matt Birk (knee), LB Terrell Suggs (knee), S Ed Reed (chest) and Ngata (thigh) were all held out. None are believed to be in serious jeopardy of missing Sunday’s game.

S Tom Zbikowski (back) returned to the practice field Wednesday for the first time since leaving the team’s Week 14 win over the Houston Texans early. He was one of five Ravens who were limited participants in practice. LB Dannell Ellerbe (head), LB Tavares Gooden (shoulder), LB Jameel McClain (back) and CB Josh Wilson (head) were also limited participants.

Head Coach John Harbaugh said he’s “optimistic” Zbikowski can see the field Sunday.

WR/KR David Reed (wrist/head) was a full participant in practice Wednesday; he hasn’t played since suffering a concussion in the team’s Week 15 win over the New Orleans Saints. WR Derrick Mason (abs/ankle) and OT Michael Oher (knee/ankle) were also full participants.

Chiefs WR Dwayne Bowe (illness) missed practice Wednesday. Head Coach Todd Haley did not seem concerned about Bowe’s Sunday status during his Wednesday conference call with Charm City reporters.

Chiefs G Brian Waters (illness) also missed practice Wednesday.

NOTES: Hear from Harbaugh, Ngata, Carr, Rice, QB Joe Flacco and LB Ray Lewis now in the BuyAToyota.com Audio Vault here at WNST.net……Jim Nantz will call Sunday’s game for CBS, he joined Drew Forrester Wednesday on “The Morning Reaction” on AM1570 WNST. That chat is available in the Audio Vault as well……CB Cary Williams is scheduled to join Forrester Thursday at 7:15am……The Ravens will return to practice Thursday, Coordinators Cam Cameron, Greg Mattison and Jerry Rosburg are scheduled to meet with the media

-G

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