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Mike Preston | January 2, 2013
There is really only one more appropriate ending for the Ravens' Ray Lewis, and that won't come for another five years when he takes his place in the NFL Hall of Fame as the greatest middle linebacker ever. Lewis, 37, made the announcement Wednesday he will retire at the end of the season, and even though it was a sad day for Baltimore sports fans, it was a great one also. Unlike John Unitas, Baltimore's other immortal football player, Lewis gets to end his career in a Ravens uniform.
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By Aaron Wilson and The Baltimore Sun | October 5, 2014
INDIANAPOLIS -- When the Ravens drafted rookie inside linebacker C.J. Mosley out of Alabama, this was the kind of performance they envisioned from the former Butkus Award winner and consensus All-American. Mosley was all over the field in a losing cause against the Indianapolis Colts on Sunday. He routinely chased down running backs in pursuit and also recorded his first NFL interception in a 20-13 defeat at Lucas Oil Stadium. “I think he played phenomenal,” said outside linebacker Terrell Suggs.
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By Edward Lee | December 8, 2012
ASHBURN, Va. - In what many would consider the twilight of his career, this middle linebacker has strung together multiple consecutive Pro Bowl appearances while recording more than 100 tackles and serving as the inspiration for his team's defense. Unlike the Ravens' Ray Lewis, however, the Washington Redskins' London Fletcher has largely avoided the injury bug. In fact, as the Ravens and Redskins prepare to meet at FedEx Field in Landover on Sunday, Fletcher is poised to play in his 237th straight game and make his 196th consecutive start.
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The Baltimore Sun | May 8, 2014
Baltimore Sun reporters, columnists and editors react to the Ravens' first-round selection of Alabama linebacker C.J. Mosley with the No. 17 overall pick on Thursday night. Jeff Zrebiec, reporter: The Ravens always say that they draft the best-player-available and not for their biggest need. That was evident again tonight as the Ravens bypassed the top two safeties in the draft - Ha Ha Clinton-Dix and Calvin Pryor - to select C.J. Mosley. The Ravens really needed more depth at middle linebacker but Mosley is not a depth pick.
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By Edward Lee | December 21, 2011
With the Cleveland Browns assured of their fourth consecutive sub-.500 campaign and their eighth in the past nine years, it might be surmised that the Browns have nothing left to play for with just two regular-season games remaining against the Ravens on Christmas Eve and the Pittsburgh Steelers on New Year's Day. That's not the approach that Cleveland middle linebacker D'Qwell Jackson is taking as the Browns prepare to visit M&T Bank Stadium on...
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By Kevin Van Valkenburg and Kevin Van Valkenburg,SUN STAFF | August 10, 2003
COLLEGE PARK - Just a week into fall practices, one thing is apparent about Maryland's linebacking corps: sophomore D'Qwell Jackson is no E.J. Henderson. At least, not yet. Suggesting that Jackson might someday reach that level, however, is not as far-fetched as it might sound. Just ask Terps coach Ralph Friedgen. "I think his instincts are just as good as E.J.'s," Friedgen said yesterday after Maryland completed the first of two practices. "He's looked very good so far. He's a real sure tackler.
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By Kevin Van Valkenburg, The Baltimore Sun | April 21, 2010
It might be the most difficult question that an NFL general manager has to answer, and though the day might not be here yet, the day is fast approaching when Ozzie Newsome and the Ravens will have to answer it, consequences be damned. When do decide to draft Ray Lewis' successor? Making the transition away from away from an aging Hall of Famer who has also been the face of your franchise for more than a decade is a prickly endeavor, and history has shown it can divide the fanbase as well as the locker room.
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By Kevin Van Valkenburg, The Baltimore Sun | April 20, 2010
It might be the most difficult question that an NFL general manager has to answer, and though the day might not be here yet, the day is fast approaching when Ozzie Newsome and the Ravens will have to answer it, consequences be damned. When do decide to draft Ray Lewis' successor? Making the transition away from away from an aging Hall of Famer who has also been the face of your franchise for more than a decade is a prickly endeavor, and history has shown it can divide the fanbase as well as the locker room.
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By Jamison Hensley and Jamison Hensley,SUN STAFF | August 13, 2000
Ray Lewis was causing trouble in the middle again. Lewis, who had one tackle last week in limited action, recorded a team-best five stops, including three for losses, during his one half of work last night. The Ravens middle linebacker led a first-unit that held the New York Jets to 104 yards of offense and no points in the first half of their 10-0 victory. "Every time he steps on the field, he wants to set the tone," coach Brian Billiek said. The game didn't start off perfect for Lewis, who was called for pass interference in the first quarter.
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By Edward Lee and Edward Lee,SUN STAFF | December 17, 2004
ASHBURN, Va. - Washington Redskins middle linebacker Antonio Pierce is realistic about his chances of being invited to the Pro Bowl. "I don't really see it happening," Pierce said. "When you've got a guy like [the Chicago Bears' Brian] Urlacher - I think he's missed, what, six games - he'll still go to the Pro Bowl. The Pro Bowl is a lot about names. Sometimes the coaches and players might vote fairly, but you've got the fans and other people involved and they vote for who they know." Pierce, 26, may be an unknown commodity to a lot of people and even some NFL teams, but to the Redskins, the fourth-year pro from Arizona has been invaluable.
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By Edward Lee and The Baltimore Sun | October 25, 2013
There was a time when Morgan State middle linebacker Cody Acker was more consumed with his tackles total. Aside from the excitement of taking down a running back or sacking a quarterback, Acker enjoyed seeing the numbers increase next to his name after each game. But with age comes maturity, and the junior now concerns himself more with team-wide success than his personal stats. "I think any football player who is a competitor wants to play at a high level," Acker said. "Before, I wanted to make a lot of tackles.
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By Aaron Wilson, The Baltimore Sun | September 8, 2013
Retired Ravens middle linebacker Ray Lewis weighed in on the Aaron Hernandez situation, offering his opinion on the former New England Patriots star tight end during his debut as an ESPN football analyst. During a roundtable discussion with Cris Carter, Keyshawn Johnson and Tom Jackson, Lewis said he believes the Patriots should have had some idea that Hernandez, who remains in jail after pleading not guilty to the charge of murdering Odin Lloyd, was headed down the wrong path.
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By Matt Vensel | August 15, 2013
Before tonight's preseason game against the Atlanta Falcons, Daryl Smith won't dance out of the tunnel at M&T Bank Stadium like Ray Lewis used to do. Smith will, however, be the one who gets to replace Lewis at middle linebacker. With the regular season just three weeks away, Smith appears to have that starting spot locked up. Smith started there against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and had a team-high five tackles in the victory. “Yeah, Daryl is that kind of player,” coach John Harbaugh, asked about Smith always being around the ball, said after the 44-16 win last Thursday.
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By Seth Boster, The Baltimore Sun | August 5, 2013
Brandon Copeland knows he can't be his grandfather. If the 2009 Gilman graduate is to claim a spot as an undrafted rookie free agent on the Ravens' final 53-man roster at the end of the preseason, it can't be in the way Roy Hilton joined the Baltimore Colts as a defensive end in 1965. At least, not exactly. "Now I'm at a totally different position," Copeland said recently after practice at the Under Armour Performance Center, where the former Penn defensive end is trying out as a middle linebacker.
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Mike Preston | August 1, 2013
It is an argument that has gone on for nearly a decade: Who is the greatest player in Ravens history, offensive tackle Jonathan Ogden or linebacker Ray Lewis? The debate seems to have hit an all-time high this week with Ogden, the team's first draft pick ever in 1996, being inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame on Saturday. But there really shouldn't be any more arguments. If you want the total package, which includes being a team leader, a mentor and having charisma while also being one of the best middle linebackers to ever play, then Lewis is No. 1. If you want a player who was truly dominant, an athletic wonder, a great technician and the best to ever play the position in the history of the NFL, then it's Ogden.
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By Aaron Wilson, The Baltimore Sun | April 24, 2013
Eighteen years ago during their inaugural draft, the Ravens landed future Hall of Fame middle linebacker Ray Lewis late in the first round. It was a masterful selection, especially since there were questions surrounding Lewis at that time due to a lack of ideal size. Lewis wound up winning a pair of NFL Defensive Player of the Year awards, providing leadership for two Super Bowl championship teams. Now that Lewis has retired, the Ravens are tasked with replacing him to bolster an inside linebacker spot weakened by Dannell Ellerbe signing with the Miami Dolphins and Jameel McClain still not medically cleared from a spinal cord contusion.
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By Mike Preston and Mike Preston,SUN STAFF | September 6, 1999
Already feeling the effects of outside linebacker Peter Boulware's shoulder injury, the Ravens waived two players yesterday, including third-year middle linebacker Tyrus McCloud.The Ravens were involved in serious trade talks about McCloud with three teams until the 4 p.m. deadline imposed by the NFL to reduce the roster to the mandatory limit of 53 players. The Ravens were also involved in some inquiries about possibly trading reserve quarterback Tony Banks, who might lose his No. 2 job to Stoney Case.
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By Aaron Wilson, The Baltimore Sun | October 14, 2012
It was an extremely costly victory for the Ravens, with team officials concerned Sunday night that middle linebacker Ray Lewis and cornerback Lardarius Webb had suffered potentially season-ending injuries against the Dallas Cowboys. Although magnetic resonance imaging exams will be conducted Monday, there was immediate fear that Lewis tore his right triceps and that Webb tore the anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee, according to multiple sources. Sources cautioned, though, that nothing is concrete on Lewis or Webb until more extensive examinations are performed.
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By Childs Walker, The Baltimore Sun | February 16, 2013
When the Ravens made Ray Lewis their second-ever draft pick, they knew they were getting a highly productive player from the talent-rich University of Miami. What they could not have known was that Lewis would become perhaps the greatest middle linebacker in history and one of the faces of his NFL generation. Through 17 seasons of controversy and excellence, Lewis' Baltimore ride has never been boring: 1996 On April 20, the Ravens select Lewis with their second pick in the first round of the NFL draft, 26th overall.
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By Matt Vensel | January 3, 2013
Every morning, Monday through Friday, blogger Matt Vensel will hook you up with reading material -- mostly on the Ravens but with some other Baltimore sports stuff, too -- to skim through as you slug down coffee and slack off at the start of your workday. That way he'll have an excuse to do the same to start his workday, too. RUNNING IT BACK Ravens linebacker Ray Lewis said Wednesday that he would retire at season's end . ... Mike Preston says that Lewis will retire as the greatest middle linebacker that ever played . ... His Ravens teammates were mostly shocked by the announcement . ... The Ravens have had mixed results recently without Lewis . ... Fullback Vonta Leach and offensive guard Marshal Yanda say they are feeling better . ... Linebacker Jameel McClain, out for the season with a neck injury, does not plan to have surgery in the offseason.
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