Tag Archives: Baltimore Ravens

NFL team established in 1996 after the Cleveland Browns moved. They play the Washington Redskins in preseason annually and in the regular season every four years. They have updated the Colts marching band song.

This Sunday – 4 NFL games and a winter storm for a 235 mile stretch of I-95

This Sunday, at 1 p.m. in an approximately 235 miles span of Interstate 95, there are four NFL games taking place, each located within 2 miles of the East Coast’s main highway:

Kansas City Chiefs at Washington Redskins, Fex Field, Landover, Md.
Minnesota Vikings at Baltimore Ravens, M&T Bank Stadium, Baltimore, Md.
Detroit Lions vs. Philadelphia Eagles, Lincoln Financial Field, Philadelphia, Pa.
Oakland Raiders at New York Jets, MetLife Stadium, East Rutherford, N.J.


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There is also a winter storm warning, in particular the D.C. region. From Capital Weather Gang – Winter storm watch issued for much of D.C. area Sunday into Monday:

The onset of precipitation across the area is most likely between mid-morning and noon with the precipitation probably starting as snow but changing to sleet and or freezing rain by late afternoon (in most spots)…

…Snow is likely for the commute to FedEx field (and for the Ravens game in Baltimore) with the snow changing to sleet and freezing rain during the game. Sleet or freezing rain is likely for the drive home.

The storm will also hit Philadelphia and the New York area, though seemingly not as hard around game time. Accuweather says:

While a large amount of snow is not expected, the city could receive its first inch or two of snow of the season, joining some of the northern and western suburbs from Friday night’s storm.

Warmer air is forecast to move in during the storm Sunday evening through Monday, causing a changeover to a wintry mix, then rain from the coast to inland areas.

In short, travel on the I-95 corridor could be pretty tough on Sunday, though most major Northeast Corridor traffic bypasses Philadelphia via the New Jersey Turnpike. On the other hand, MetLife Stadium is directly adjacent to the Turnpike. FedEx Field can be bypassed by using the Baltimore-Washington Parkway (unless you are a truck) and the opposite side of the Capital Beltway. M&T Bank Stadium is right near the terminus of the B/W Parkway, but the Harbor Tunnel Thruway provides a bypass too.

There is also a New England Patriots vs. Cleveland Browns game in Foxborough, but the forecast there is sunny and 34°.

I don’t know how much these games impact I-95 in general (an interesting question), but whatever that is could be magnified this Sunday.

Yes, I’m aware I-95 isn’t technically continuous between Pennsylvania and New Jersey

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Redskins vs. Ravens Q&A and prediction with DJ

I invited a former co-worker, “DJ,” to talk about the Washington Redskins vs. Baltimore Ravens game this Sunday. I previously blogged a little about the matchup and my feelings about whether it is a rivalry, so go read that too.

Now that you are back from reading that link above, let’s get started.


WFY: How tough was it not having football after the Bob Irsay stole the Colts like a thief in the night in 1984? Do you hate the Indy team? I feel bad for Baltimore that it happened – they made Art Donovan cry and that is unforgivable in my book.

DJ: Not having football was no fun, but I didn’t really remember having it before since I was not too old when they left town. I don’t hate the Indy team (although my dad doesn’t care for them at all), and in fact I have been to Lucas Oil Stadium a couple of times. I do realize the history here though, so for the Baltimore Colts fans, I know how much having a team means to them.

WFY: What was your reaction to getting the Browns from Cleveland?

DJ: Knowing what Baltimore Colts fans went through losing a team through my dad and others, I understand their sadness over the loss of the original Browns. After reading the details of the move, it still was not handled well, but they did get a team pretty quick so I am glad they didn’t have to wait long for that, and they were able to keep the name and the full history of their original team.

WFY: Did the choice of Ravens as a team name work for you then? What about the purple and black uniforms? I feel kin of bad that Baltimore went from those beautiful Colts uniforms to the Ravens look. Also, what in the name of Tony Siragusa were they thinking when they wore black jerseys against the Steelers? I mean, switching to your enemy’s jersey color when you host them is just strange.

DJ: I like the name and the colors. The Colts were gone, didn’t make sense to try to go back to that. And I have no idea why they changed the color, so I have no real reaction. The loss doesn’t help my thoughts on that either!!

WFY: Did you ever make it to Memorial Stadium for football? What do you enjoy about whatever the current Ravens stadium is called? Why doesn’t it have a grass field? The two other closest stadiums (FedEx Field a mere 37 miles down I-95 and Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia) have grass. If they had to sacrifice Hammerjacks for a stadium, couldn’t they have at least kept a grass field?

DJ: I never went to a Colts game. I did get to Memorial Stadium when the current stadium was under construction, saw Brett Favre play with Green Bay against the Ravens, so was pretty cool. And sorry, I have no opinion on grass vs. fake — the field looks the same to me from the seats!! :P

WFY: Is Joe Flacco an elite quarterback?

DJ: He is good quarterback, can absolutely be an elite quarterback.

WFY: What is the latest on linebackers Terrell Suggs and Ray Lewis? How has the Ravens defense been without Ray Ray for most of the season?
DJ: Ray is a leader, but he isn’t the entire defense. He is missed, but there are other guys who are great too. Love Terrell, hate seeing him on the sidelines with injury, so happy to see him in the game.


WFY: Is Ray Rice going to just run up and down the field on the Skins on Sunday? What other weapons do the Ravens have on offense?

DJ: Ray Rice is great, love when he breaks away and scores, but there are others who make the offense work as well. Loving Dennis Pitta, and love some of the Torrey Smith catches. And Boldin…love that guy!

WFY: Have you seen much of Robert Griffin III play? Are you concerned about what he’s capable of against the Ravens defense?

DJ: RG3 is definitely electric — very smart and mature, and great QB. Not worried about what he is capable of — know what the Ravens are capable of too. Ed Reed or Jacaoby Jones interception(s) maybe? :)

WFY: Is Sunday’s game considered a rivalry game by Ravens fans? What do you think of John Harbaugh stumping for the Ravens to be Washingtonians’ second team?

DJ: Ravens/Steelers is a real rivalry, but I know the beltway rivalries are fun too! And I haven’t paid attention to any stumping — I recognize the Redskins Nation is solid/diehard.

WFY: Are you happy the band brought back the Baltimore Colts song with updated lyrics? I can’t believe they didn’t use it in the first place. Also, did you see The Band That Wouldn’t Die?

DJ: No thoughts on the Colts song since I didn’t know the song before (again, wasn’t too into the Baltimore Colts due to time they left and my knowledge of them), and didn’t see The Band That Wouldn’t Die, but my dad did and he loved it.

WFY: Is a crabcake and a National Bohemian the quintessential Ravens gameday meal? Or would that be a Heavy Seas instead of Natty Boh? Can you get either of those beers in the stadium?

DJ: I don’t buy much food in the stadium, but most of the places nearby have crabcakes on their gameday menu, so I definitely am a diehard for one during tailgating. And I can’t speak for Natty Boh since I don’t drink it — honestly I am guessing it is served inside, but I don’t like it. And I don’t know Heavy Seas at all :P

WFY: Care to make a friendly wager on this game? Now, you aren’t in the office any more, but how about on Tuesday during the staff meeting the loser has to sing the winner’s fight song via the telephone?

DJ: I am not a wagering person (went to Vegas, didn’t spent a dime in the casinos), and I don’t know the words to the song and can’t carry a tune, but I can call into the meeting (only between 11 and 11:30 since I have meetings already scheduled) to have you acknowledge the Ravens win. :P

Final score prediction will be completely wrong (I am terrible at these things), but lets go with 24-21 Ravens win!

WFY: I’m not delighted to predict that the Ravens will defeat the Redskins 24-20, but if DC pulls it out, I’ll happily send your the lyrics to Hail to the Redskins.

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Redskins vs. Ravens prediction and classic D.C. vs. Baltimore video

A Washington Redskins vs. Baltimore Ravens guest prognosticator post is coming, but I thought I’d do a little post just for fun.

WTOP radio is pushing this as a local rivalry, probably because they have a couple of Baltimore fanboys in their sports department. This isn’t a rivalry on two fronts though.

  1. Baltimore isn’t local to Washington, its regional. I can see FedEx Field in Landover, Md., where the Redskins play from an Alexandria overpass I go over most days. That stadium is also visible from other parts of Northern Virginia and D.C. That is local. The Ravens stadium is not visible from any part of the D.C. area.
  2. The other reason this isn’t a rivalry is because they only play each other every four years in the regular season. I have mentioned before that I’d like it to become an interconference rivalry annually. The potential for many regional/intrastate interconference games exists and I was hoping with an eighteen game season we’d see them added. However, since that seems to be off the table, I don’t see this happening anytime soon if ever.

* * *

FedEx Field, for all of its shortcomings (which are overstated), is superior to the NFL stadium approximately 37 miles up I-95 because it has grass. It may be torn up and muddy (DC Sports Bog, The Post), but that will always be superior to the shameful artificial turf in Baltimore.

* * *

Sports on Earth has a great preview of the game in this week’s NFL Lowdown which includes this:

Redskins cornerback DeAngelo Hall was walking around on crutches earlier in the week. Suddenly, the clutches broke free of Hall and got open for a 20-yard reception. Hall chased the crutches down the sideline and somehow managed to horse-collar tackle them, earning a 15-yard penalty. Hall complained about the flag to his orthopedist. Dan Snyder responded to the incident by calling Hall an All-Pro, showering him with money and saying dumb things about the Giants.

* * *

History is about where it happened and not the corporation involved. As far as I am concerned, the Ravens are the poorly dressed descendants of the Baltimore Colts. Here’s some great video of the pregame of a Monday Night Football match-up between the Redskins and the Colts at Memorial Stadium from 1978.

39-year old Billy Kilmer had just been renamed starting QB, replacing Joe Theismann. This would be Kilmer’s final season.

The Redskins had just switched to gold facemasks — Kilmer looks weird in it. ’78 was also the last year for gold pants until 2010.

This was the first year the Colts wore white facemasks.

This was also the final Monday Night game at Memorial Stadium, inclusive of the two years the Ravens played there.

Joe Washington highlights are featured, but as a Colt. He joined the Redskins a few years later and was a key part of the offense that led the Redskins to two consecutive Super Bowls, one of which the Redskins won.

The Colts upset the Redskins that night (Pro Football Reference), . The Redskins stumbled to an 8-8 finish. The Colts went 5-11, but were 3-2 with Bert Jones at QB.

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Uninformed NFL predictions – Conference championship games

The Northeast corridor is well represented in the NFL championship Sunday with 3 teams playing. At least one will move on to the Super Bowl. This is the best Sunday in pro football, better than the Super Bowl which is amateur night and about things like ads and half-time shows.

Baltimore Ravens at New England Patriots

About 400 miles of Interstate 95 separate the two stadiums. I guess I’m grudgingly rooting for Baltimore because the thought of the Ravens going to Indianapolis for a Super Bowl is kind of funny. Oh and I like their marching band too.

I think the Patriots win though, because I’ll take the Pats offense can overcome the Ravens defense better than the Ravens offense can overcome the Pats defense. If Ray Rice has a big game, which he didn’t against the Houston Texas, Baltimore has a chance. I also think New England wins because it keeps Penn State from having a full time coach for another two weeks.

PATRIOTS 34 Ravens 24

New York Football Giants at San Francisco 49ers
The battle of I-80! Or the Lincoln Highway! I’m filled with nostalgia for the NFL I loved before I went to college. Two flagship teams wearing excellent old-school (for the most part) uniforms playing on a real grass field that will probably be coming up in clumps. Candlestick Park is one of the few NFL stadiums left that has any character for the television viewer. I cannot wait to watch this game.

The sloppy field probably favors the 49ers with their run gun and stout defense. However, San Francisco gave up over 30 points last week at home to the Saints. I picked the Giants to go to the Super Bowl, so I guess I have to keep picking them. I think Eli Manning is in the zone and the Giants defense knows it is time to play. They have been through this before with head coach Tom Coughlin. Either way, I’m rooting for the winner of this game to win the Super Bowl too. I always liked the NFC better anyway.

Giants 24 49ERS 20

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Uninformed NFL predictions – Divisional Playoffs

New Orleans Saints at San Francisco 49ers

The Niners haven’t been in the playoffs in ten years. They can run the ball though and are playing at home. Weather is apparently going to be pretty good, but Saints are still a dome team. Plus, the ghost of Jim Mora may show up. I’m going with the 49ers at Candlestick.


Denver Broncos at New England Patriots

If the Broncos can get to Tom Brady, they have a shot. Still, I’ll take the Pats and their playoff experience in a night game in Foxboro over Tim Tebow.

Houston Texans at Baltimore Ravens

The Ravens are hosting their first playoff game in a while. This seems like the kind of game they lose, despite a strong crowd and Houston using a third string QB. I’m rooting for the Ravens too, I’d love to see them troll Indianapolis.

New York Football Giants at Green Bay Packers

The Packers were nearly unstoppable, but the G-men are peaking at the right time and have won in Green Bay in the playoffs before, so I’m taking them in the upset. I did predict they’d make it to the Super Bowl.

GAMBLOR DISCLAIMER: If you need these predictions to place bets on these games, I don’t know what to tell you.

Okay, the Jim Mora thing was a little forced.

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Red jerseys, Strasburg’s dip problem, all stars and other DC sports observations

SEEING RED: DC United has joined the Nationals (alternate), Capitals (home) and Redskins (home) in having a red jersey as part of their uniform. DCU’s new alternate jerseys debuted this past weekend. Later this season, the Wizards (Mystics too, I think) will also go red for their road jerseys for the 2011-2012 season. Somebody needs to get a star from each team and pose them all in front of the Capitol all wearing red and holding a DC flag or something.

SPEAKING OF CAPS JERSEYS: Tonight is Dino Ciccarelli Night, so the Caps are wearing their original sweaters (like the one I got 4 years ago) or at least the Winter Classic knockoffs.Somebody count the number of stars on the sleeve and see if it is historically accurate. No word on if Ciccarelli is taking a limo to the game, though I’m certain Champions of Georgetown is closed. Also scheduled to appear — former mascot WINGER.

DIP: Stephen Strasburg is still trying to give up chewing tobacco (The Post) and wants to set a good example though isn’t going to tell anybody what to do, even though he is.

STRASBURG HEALS LITTLE LEAUGER’S ELBOW: Well not, not quite, but Strasburg has corresponded with a Richmond-area little leaguer who threw out his elbow too (The Mechanicsville Local).

ALL STARS: Alex Ovechkin had an assist, a goal and a penalty that required a penalty shot in the NHL All Star Game. D’Angelo Hall was MVP of the Pro Bowl which says a lot about the Pro Bowl, maybe even more than the NFC going up 42-0 and winning 55-41. I’m glad I watched neither game.

BORDER WAR: WeLoveDC asks where the boundary between Redskins and Ravens country is in Maryland — I submitted, based on what Brad said, the Patuxent River. Sadly, the same cannot be said for the Nats – Orioles divide. Also, yinzers jumped into that post and mentioned it was Steeler Nation everywhere, which sounds better than Western Pennsylvania Diaspora, I suppose.

SUPER BOWL XVIII: Joe Gibbs threw Russ Grimm under the bus for losing Super Bowl XVIII. Grimm’s karmic punishment — his jersey is being sold with the wrong number, #63 instead of #68. Oh and never getting a head coaching job.

Lastly, did you know that the Nats have won on the road more recently than the Wiz?

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Redskins vs. Ravens and other regional matchups should be annual

When the NFL goes to 18 games (it seems inevitable) the schedule should include a regular interconference rivalry game for each team. Currently, the Washington Redskins and Baltimore Ravens, separated by a mere 35 miles of pavement on Interstate 95, only have quadrennial matchups in the regular season. Sure, there is preseason, but no reasonable fan its that counts for regional bragging rights. Well, maybe Ravens fans do, because after Saturday night’s performance, the Redskins fans certainly can’t (The Post). Burgundy and Gold fans may dislike the Ravens a little more now. Too bad they can’t have a rematch that counts. If it were up to me, they’d play each other every season, alternating venues.

We know the battle of New York/New Jersey between the Giants and Jets is well-received. I am sure that the state of Texas would be on board with annual Dallas Cowboys vs. Houston Texans matchups, just as Pennsylvania would be for the Philadelphia Eagles and Pittsburgh Steelers playing each other. There is also potential for some neutral site games — Eagles and Steelers in State College; Cowboys vs. Texans in Austin, etc.

Here is a list I created several years ago with some natural interconference rivalries and ones that admittedly are a little forced.

Intrastate

Washington Redskins vs. Baltimore Ravens
New York Giants vs. New York Jets
Philadelphia Eagles vs. Pittsburgh Steelers
San Francisco 49ers vs. Oakland Raiders
Dallas Cowboys vs. Houston Texans
St. Louis Rams vs. Kansas City Chiefs
Miami Dolphins vs. Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Adjoining states

Cleveland Browns vs. Detroit Lions
Chicago Bears vs. Indianapolis Colts
Arizona Cardinals vs. Denver Broncos (shared corner might have to do)

Beyond those teams there are some other rivals that are kind a little forced, but commonality can be found between some of them.

Opposite ends of the coast

San Diego Chargers vs. Seattle Seahawks

Frozen tundra

Green Bay Packers vs. Buffalo Bills

Expansion partners

Carolina Panthers vs. Jacksonville Jaguars

Jazz vs. Country

New Orleans Saints vs. Tennessee Titans

Um, I-75, I guess

Atlanta Falcons vs. Cincinnati Bengals

What’s left

New England Patriots vs. Minnesota Vikings

Okay, what’s your take on this idea and these pairings?

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Angelos doesn’t just hate the Nats & DC, he hates the Ravens too

EXCLUSIVE: It was Peter Angelos vs. Steve Bisciotti in latest skirmish over MASN & Ravens TV rightsWNST
While it is well established that Baltimore Orioles and MASN owner Peter Angelos hates the Washington Nationals and the greater Washington D.C. region, it is less well-known that he hates the Baltimore Ravens too. The wannabe megalomaniac apparently scuttled a deal with the Ravens to air team programming that had been approved in principle in April. It is alleged that Angelos ended the deal because he could not deal directly with Ravens owner Steve Biscotti, who preferred to delegate the responsibilities to more qualified employees.

So, is the lesson of all of this not to take the slights by Angelos and MASN personally because he hates Baltimoreans too? Nah, I think the lesson is that Angelos ruins everything he is involved in and we should still crush him at every opportunity and never buy tickets to Orioles games.

The story above is from a Baltimore radio station that dislikes Angelos even more than me.

H/T @the506

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The Band That Wouldn’t Die looks good

I have a soft spot for the Baltimore Colts.

While my antipathy towards Baltimore’s baseball team is well documented, I have said on a few occasions that the Colts moving out of Baltimore is probably the worst franchise relocation in professional sports history. The fans were great, the team had great, memorable players and a marching band with a catchy fight song. The team moved away ultimately because the owner, Bob Irsay, was a really nasty individual who was also an alcoholic. Indianapolis was and still is completely unworthy of those horseshoe helmets and uniforms.

Noted film director Barry Levinson, a Baltimore native, has made a documentary for ESPN 30 for 30 about that marching band, “The Band That Wouldn’t Die.” The band played on even after the team abandoned them and eventually became the Marching Ravens after the Cleveland Browns (another bad move, but one that was corrected almost immediately) came to Baltimore. The whole story gets told tonight at 8 p.m.

It looks pretty good.

UPDATE: It is pretty good, great even. It is completely one-side anti-Irsay, pro-Baltimore fan propaganda, but really well done propaganda. Here is the first part:

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NFL Playoffs: Conference Championship predictions

HOME team capitalized

Baltimore over PITTSBURGH
The Steelers beat the Ravens twice this season by a combined seven points. Even though the Steelers are at home and have a strong defense and better offense, I have a gut feeling the Ravens defense is just going to be better. This means I expect a low scoring game of course. I think the Ravens overcome having a rookie QB in Joe Flacco and the Steelers lose another AFC Championship game at home.

Philadelphia over ARIZONA
I do not think of the Eagles as a team of destiny, just a better team than the Cardinals. Either way, the NFC will send a Cinderella team to the Super Bowl. I think the Eagles have the focus they will need for some reason, having been in this situation so many times before.

These picks are for recreational purposes only and should not be used by degenerate gamblers.

Last week: 2-2

, , ,

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