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Jan 26

Ravens tell Justin Forsett that they want him back in 2015

The Pro Bowl running back said the Ravens want their top rusher in 2014 back with the team next season.

In simplest terms, Justin Forsett was a pleasant surprise for the Ravens.

Forsett totaled 1,266 yards and eight touchdowns in 2014, after beginning the season in a timeshare with Bernard Pierce and Lorenzo Taliaferro. Emerging as Baltimore’s best running back, Forsett quickly made an impression on Ravens fans with his exceptional vision and deceptive power.

Forsett was only signed to a one-year deal and thus will be a free agent when the new league year begins. But in an interview with NFL.com, Forsett said the Ravens have told him they want him back in 2015.

“That is the plan, they gave me my shot, they trusted me and believed in me enough to give me that shot so I’d like to stay,” Forsett said.

It’s important to note that Forsett had his best season as a running back in Gary Kubiak’s offensive system that features a zone-blocking scheme. New offensive coordinator Marc Trestman did say that that he plans on keeping the same zone-blocking principles in place.

If so, and the offensive line is able to continue opening up holes for the running backs, it wouldn’t be out of the question for Forsett to have a good two or three more years at a high level. At 29, Forsett has had little wear on his body in the NFL since this was his first year carrying this big of a load.

Forsett by no means is a long-term option given his age. But with the way he progressed through a full 16 games plus the playoffs, he hasn’t showed any signs of slowing down yet.


Jan 26

Ravens offense struggled against the AFC South

Last season the Ravens offense struggled versus the AFC South’s defenses.

Marc Trestman’s defense is similar to Gary Kubiak’s but with small differences. Hopefully, one of those small differences leads to better performances against out-of-division teams.

Four of the Ravens worst offensive outputs came against the AFC South. A game against the Colts, where the Ravens couldn’t convert on fourth down after getting the ball to the Colts’ 3-yard line, were only able to come up with a field goal after the Colts fumbled a punt on their own 15, and a three out of 13 third down conversion rate. They also had less than 100 yards rushing coming against a bad rushing defense and allowed the Colts’ no-name pass rushers to have a big day.

Against the Titans, the Ravens didn’t do bad, as Justin Forsett had over 100 yards rushing and two touchdown and he won the AFC Offensive Player of the Week. Joe Flacco threw a touchdown pass to Torrey Smith, but the Ravens offense was still stagnant versus a defense that was mediocre against the pass and awful against the run.

Against the Jaguars the Ravens couldn’t get anything going on the ground and the Ravens only offensive score came off of a Joe Flacco to Owen Daniels touchdown pass. Again this was against a mediocre passing defense and a poor rushing defense.

The Texans were a complete debacle for the Ravens as Joe Flacco was pressured all day, the run game went nowhere, and Flacco could hardly complete a pass. While the Texans had a quality rushing defense, their passing defense ranked 26th outside of J.J. Watt.

Perhaps the fact that Kubiak spent eight seasons in the AFC South and that gave them enough time to study his offense is the cause of the Ravens struggles versus the South. Whatever the cause is, the Ravens don’t have to immediately figure that out, as the Ravens only have to play the Jacksonville Jaguars at M&T Bank Stadium next season.

Trestman won’t face the NFC North next season either, so perhaps the Ravens’ offense won’t have teams too familiar with what they’ll try to do each week.

Jan 26

Josh Gordon fails drug test, could be subject to suspension

The wide receiver is facing a year long suspension again for violating the NFLs’ drug policy.

Some people just never learn.

Half a year after getting a season-long suspension for violating the NFL’s drug policy, that later got renegotiated to 10 games, Browns receiver Josh Gordon is facing another season long suspension for violating the NFL’s drug policy, according to ESPN’s Adam Schefter. Subsequent reports indicate he tested positive for alcohol.

It’s been a long fall for Gordon, who at this point last year was playing in the Pro Bowl after having a breakout season in only 12 games, after being suspended for four games last year.

This doesn’t look good for Gordon, who gave a lackluster performance during the last five games of the Cleveland Browns season and was suspended for the Week 17 finale against the Baltimore Ravens because he showed up late to a walkthrough on Saturday because he was partying the previous night.

This brings up new issues for the Browns about Gordon’s reliability and now makes their hole at wide receiver larger.

Jan 26

Monday Ravens links: C.J. Mosley, Elvis Dumervil stand out in Pro Bowl

Read what others are writing about the Baltimore Ravens.

C.J. Mosley concludes successful rookie season in Pro Bowl

Rookie inside linebacker C.J. Mosley finished his first season in the NFL with an appearance in the Pro Bowl, something not many rookies get to accomplish, writes The Baltimore Sun’s Aaron Wilson.

Ravens news, notes on Terrence Cody and positions of need

The Baltimore Sun’s Jeff Zrebiec writes about the Terrence Cody situation, as well as what positions of need the Ravens will need to look at this offseason.

Ravens make familiar impact in Pro Bowl

ESPN.com’s Jamison Hensley writes that once again the Ravens’ players represented in the Pro Bowl had an impact on the annual all-star game.

Grady Jarrett calls Ray Lewis his uncle

BaltimoreRavens.com’s Ryan Mink writes that NFL prospect Grady Jarrett, who played college football at Clemson, says that Ray Lewis was like an uncle to him while growing up.

Elvis Dumervil shows defense is alive in Pro Bowl

Ravens outside linebacker Elvis Dumervil proves that the NFL’s Pro Bowl can still showcase some solid defense, writes BaltimoreRavens.com’s Garrett Downing.

Jan 25

3 Mistakes the Baltimore Ravens Can’t Afford to Make This Offseason

After a promising 2014 season, the Baltimore Ravens are on the verge of becoming a Super Bowl contender again.

After winning it all in 2012, Baltimore endured a rebuilding 2013 season that saw it go 8-8 and miss the playoffs. The Ravens rebounded to go 10-6 and make the playoffs this past season.

From there, Baltimore whipped the Steelers in Pittsburgh before narrowly losing at New England in the divisional round. 

The Ravens looked like a championship contender in both games, and they could become one in 2015 if they avoid making several potential mistakes this offseason. 

Here’s a look at the biggest items Baltimore cannot afford to miss on.

Begin Slideshow

Jan 25

Ravens unrestricted free agent predictions

Which free agents do the Ravens retain?

LS Morgan Cox

Kevin McDermott and Patrick Scales both had struggles when Cox went down, making him more valuable to the Ravens. Cox shouldn’t be too hard to retain, as bidding wars don’t erupt over long snappers.

CB Danny Gorrer

Gorrer has familiarity with the Ravens and I can see him getting brought back as a special teamer or just for competition in camp.

S Darian Stewart

Stewart was mediocre as a safety. He could get brought back on a cheap contract for depth and as competition for Terrence Brooks in camp.

S Jeromy Miles

See Darian Stewart, but he has value as a special teamer.

DT Lawrence Guy

Guy was good for depth on the defensive line. He could be brought back for cheap, especially if Haloti Ngata gets cut, Chris Canty retires, and Kapron Lewis-Moore isn’t healthy.

OG Will Rackley

Rackley suffered a season ending injury in training camp. And apparently he wasn’t good in Jacksonville anyway. No need to re-sign him.

CB Aaron Ross

Ross is 32 and he suffered a season-ending Achilles tear in training camp. No need to re-sign him.

TE Owen Daniels

Daniels was a good weapon for Joe Flacco, as well as being a good blocker. The only way I see him going to Denver is if they lose Julius Thomas, and I don’t think that happens. I see him getting a 2 year $3 million deal to stay as a Raven.

RB Justin Forsett

Forsett was a pleasant surprise when the Ravens were in big need of one. That being said he’s 30, there’s younger runningbacks on the market this offseason (DeMarco Murray, Shane Vereen, Roy Helu, Mark Ingram) and the draft is loaded with talent at the position. I think he signs a two-year $3 million deal to stay here.

QB Tyrod Taylor

Taylor isn’t all that good, even by backup standards. He’s had poor performances when deployed for mop-up duty, and when given extended playing time in Week 17, he threw the game-sealing pick-six. Keith Wenning probably gets the job next year.

OLB Pernell McPhee

McPhee had a break-out 2014 season and a team with plenty of cap space in need of a guy like him could pay him much more than the Ravens can or will. In short, nothing we haven’t seen here before.

WR Torrey Smith

Smith isn’t a No. 1 receiver. He has questionable hands, questionable short-to-intermediate route-running, and disappears at times. But he’s a good No. 2. I think Baltimore re-signs Torrey for five years and $32.5 million.

Jan 25

Grading the 2013 Ravens draft class

How did the class fare in their second year?

Matt Elam

Elam looks to have gotten worse than he was in 2013. He couldn’t tackle, he couldn’t cover and he frequently was out of place. The best performance the Ravens got out of him was as a slot corner in Week 2 against Pittsburgh. Things aren’t looking very bright for Elam as it looks like he’s lost his starting job in 2015 and if he doesn’t pick it up next season, he might be one of the very few busts the Ravens have drafted in the first round.

Grade: F

Arthur Brown

After scarcely playing in 2013, Brown was on the inactive list for most of 2014 and he only played on special teams when he was activated. Why he was benched is still unknown, but I’m still optimistic about his potential. Maybe he’s good or maybe him being on the bench hasn’t allowed him to show that he isn’t NFL caliber. Hopefully it’s the former.

Grade: D

Brandon Williams

This is where things start to get better. After serving only as a rotational player in 2013, Williams took the starting job as nose tackle and never let go of it. Williams was a dominant force up the middle vs. the run and the pass. He especially showed up during Haloti Ngata’s four game suspension this season and during the playoffs. He definitely looks like a keeper on the defense.

Grade: A

John Simon

Simon was put on the Ravens practice squad because there was too much depth at the linebacker position. On October 7, the Houston Texans signed him to their active roster.

Grade: D

Kyle Juszczyk

Juszczyk is a quality option in the passing game for Joe Flacco and he relieved any concerns of him being a run-blocker as he excelled in that area.

Grade: A

Rick Wagner

Wagner was PFF’s No. 1 right tackle and when teamed up with Marshal Yanda, they were the best right side of an offensive line in the league.

Grade: A

Kapron Lewis-Moore

Lewis-Moore tore his Achilles in training camp and didn’t play this year. He expects to be back for OTA’s.

Grade: Incomplete

Ryan Jensen

Jensen was on the practice squad, apparently getting treatment for his sleep apnea. He was elevated to the 53 man roster on Week 17, and hopefully he can keep it in 2015.

Grade: Incomplete

Aaron Mellette

Mellette was released during minicamp, as his knee was still unhealthy.

Grade: N/A

Marlon Brown (undrafted)

The second year receiver had a dip in production, as training camp struggles, and the improved receiving corps pushed him down the depth chart initially, but he had a strong second half of the season. Hopefully he can build off that in 2015.

Grade: C

Brynden Trawick (undrafted)

Trawick was mostly just a special-teamer in 2014. Same as last year.

Grade: C

Overall

The draft class has a first round player who looks like a dud, a second rounder who’s a question mark, as well as two sixth round picks who have yet to step onto the field. They cut a seventh-rounder and a fourth rounder who is a role player on a different team. Williams, Juszczyk, Wagner and Brown save this class from being a total waste.

Grade: C-

Jan 25

Pro Bowl 2015: Rosters, rule changes, game time, TV schedule, online streaming and more

Find information here on the 2015 Pro Bowl game time, TV channel, rule changes, full rosters for Team Cris Carter and Team Michael Irvin.

For those that enjoy exhibition football at its finest, the Pro Bowl is for you.
Four Ravens players will represent their organization Sunday night, with Justin Forsett and C.J. Mosley on Team Carter, coached by John Harbaugh, and Elvis Dumervil and Marshal Yanda on Team Irvin.
Here’s all the information you need for tonight’s Pro Bowl:

How to watch

Date: Sunday, January 25, 2015
Time: 8 p.m. ET
Channel: ESPN
Online streamingWatchESPN
Location: University of Phoenix Stadium, Glendale, Arizona
RostersTeam CarterTeam Irvin
Coaches: Jason Garrett | John Harbaugh

Some rules

Via NFL.com

Game within the Game — A two-minute warning will be added to the first and third quarters and the ball will change hands after each quarter. This will increase the opportunities for quarterbacks to direct “two-minute drills,” which are especially exciting for fans.

No Kickoffs — The coin toss will determine which team is awarded possession first. The ball will be placed on the 25-yard line at the start of each quarter and after scoring plays.

Cover Two and Press Coverage – The defense will be permitted to play “cover two” and “press” coverage. In previous years, only “man” coverage was permitted, except for goal line situations.

Stopping of the Game Clock — Beginning at the two-minute mark of every quarter, if the offense does not gain at least one yard, the clock will stop as if the play were an incomplete pass. This rule will make the team with the ball attempt to gain yardage toward the end of each quarter.

Game Timing — The game clock will start after an incomplete pass on the signal of the referee, except inside the last two minutes of the first half and the last five minutes of the second half.

Play Clock — A 35-second/25-second play clock will be adopted instead of the typical 40-second/25-second clock.

Sacks – The game clock will not stop on quarterback sacks outside of the final two minutes of the game. Currently, the game clock stops in these situations outside of two- minutes of the second and fourth quarters.

Here are the rosters for the game:

Team Carter

Coach

John Harbaugh

Offense

QB Andrew Luck
QB Drew Brees
QB Andy Dalton
RB Jamaal Charles
RB Justin Forsett
RB Alfred Morris
FB John Kuhn
WR Antonio Brown
WR A.J. Green
WR T.Y. Hilton
WR Jordy Nelson
TE Martellus Bennett
TE Greg Olsen
OT Joe Staley
OT Duane Brown
OT Ryan Clady
OG Josh Sitton
OG Evan Mathis
OG Mike Pouncey
OC Maurkice Pouncey
OC Jason Kelce

Defense

DE J.J. Watt
DE Mario Williams
DE Calais Campbell
DT Marcell Dareus
DT Dontari Poe
DT Kyle Williams
OLB Justin Houston
OLB Connor Barwin
OLB Tamba Hali
ILB C.J. Mosley
ILB Lawrence Timmons
CB Patrick Peterson
CB Antonio Cromartie
CB Aqib Talib
CB Sam Shields
Donte Whitner
Glover Quin
Antoine Bethea

Special teams

Cody Parkey
Pat McAfee
PR Devin Hester
ST Justin Bethel
LS Jon Dorenbos

Team Irvin

Coach

Jason Garrett

Offense

QB Tony Romo
QB Matthew Stafford
QB Matt Ryan
RB DeMarco Murray
RB Mark Ingram
RB C.J. Anderson
FB Marcel Reece
WR Odell Beckham Jr.
WR Randall Cobb
WR Emmanuel Sanders
WR Golden Tate
TE Jimmy Graham
TE Jason Witten
OT Tyron Smith
OT Joe Thomas
OT Trent Williams
OG Zach Martin
OG Marshal Yanda
OG Kyle Long
OC Travis Frederick
OC Nick Mangold

Defense

DE Cameron Wake
DE Robert Quinn
DE DeMarcus Ware
DT Aaron Donald
DT Geno Atkins
DT Sheldon Richardson
OLB Von Miller
OLB Clay Matthews
OLB Elvis Dumervil
ILB Luke Kuechley
ILB D’Qwell Jackson
CB Joe Haden
CB Vontae Davis
CB Brent Grimes
CB Chris Harris
T.J. Ward
Eric Weddle
Mike Adams

Special teams

Adam Vinatieri
Kevin Huber
PR Darren Sproles
ST Darrell Stuckey
LS L.P. Ladouceur


Jan 24

Abdullah Leads North to 34-13 win over South in Senior Bowl

Nebraska’s Ameer Abdullah rushed for 73 yards and added 40 receiving, leading the North to a 34-13 victory over the South on Saturday in the Senior Bowl, punctuating his college career in his home state.

Jan 24

Senior Bowl gameday thread

There’s probably a future Raven in this game, and it’s going to be a much better game then the Pro Bowl.

Discuss potential Ravens draftees below.

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