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Crow-Magnon
08-01-2009, 09:21 AM
Training Camps are open, so it won't be long until we're knee-deep in AFCN action!

Good luck to you guys this season. I have high hopes for the Ravens and am anxious to see if Flacco makes a great progression into his sophomore year (especially without Mason) and to see how well Oher plays as a rookie OL. I also want to see if Kelly Gregg and Michael Yanda can still play at a high level after crippling injuries last season, and will the Ravens kick themselves late in the season without Stover there to put a game-winning FG through the uprights at crunch time.

What player(s) on the Steelers are you most anxious to see taking snaps come Day One?

Fire Haley
08-01-2009, 09:42 AM
I say it's going to be a closer division this year - we all have much easier schedules.

Who knows - this could be the year we don't go 6-0 in the AFCN....shocking, I know.


Sweed and Mendenhall and Timmons - that's who I'll be watching.

Crow-Magnon
08-01-2009, 10:06 AM
I say it's going to be a closer division this year - we all have much easier schedules.

Who knows - this could be the year we don't go 6-0 in the AFCN....shocking, I know.


Sweed and Mendenhall and Timmons - that's who I'll be watching.

How's Mendenhall looking so far? If not for injury, he looked like he would have had a great season last year.

Sweed deserves a closer look, that's for sure.

Fire Haley
08-01-2009, 10:14 AM
Today is the first practice - we don't know anything yet.

Staying healthy - that's all I really care about.

SteelCityMom
08-01-2009, 10:33 AM
Training Camps are open, so it won't be long until we're knee-deep in AFCN action!

Good luck to you guys this season. I have high hopes for the Ravens and am anxious to see if Flacco makes a great progression into his sophomore year (especially without Mason) and to see how well Oher plays as a rookie OL. I also want to see if Kelly Gregg and Michael Yanda can still play at a high level after crippling injuries last season, and will the Ravens kick themselves late in the season without Stover there to put a game-winning FG through the uprights at crunch time.

What player(s) on the Steelers are you most anxious to see taking snaps come Day One?

I can't wait for the season to start! These last couple of weeks before pre-season and the last month until regular season always drag the most for me.

Best of luck to you guys this year too. What's up with the WR situation? Have they found a replacement for Mason/Bennett yet?

The guys I'll be watching most this year will be Sweed, Mendy and Holmes. I'm hoping Holmes has a big year this year and doesn't let winning last year go to his head too much. He needs to have a big, big year in the regular season IMO. Hopefully Ward will be able to help keep his head on straight, and Sweed as well.

El-Gonzo Jackson
08-01-2009, 11:18 AM
The more that I think of the Ravens pick of Oher, the more I think its their intention to try and have guys with LT skill play both OT's and reduce the rush of Harrison and Woodley.

Its an interesting possible plan, because Oher isnt that great of a run blocker and it may signal a shift away from the running game to McLain, McGahee and Rice.......time will tell.

LVSteelersfan
08-01-2009, 12:13 PM
I agree about watching Holmes closely. Of all the players on the team, he is the one with the potential to have a swelled head because of the playoffs last year. He needs 16 games of the same thing for us to have a great year. Of course, my eyes are on Frank Summers mainly because I am a UNLV alumni and few players ever become stars out of here. It would be great if he turned out to be the next bruising RB/FB in the Steeler tradition. Heaven knows, there is no one else here who fills that role. Plus I hope Urbik ends up being a beast and unseats Stapleton.

HometownGal
08-01-2009, 03:00 PM
Training Camps are open, so it won't be long until we're knee-deep in AFCN action!

Good luck to you guys this season. I have high hopes for the Ravens and am anxious to see if Flacco makes a great progression into his sophomore year (especially without Mason) and to see how well Oher plays as a rookie OL. I also want to see if Kelly Gregg and Michael Yanda can still play at a high level after crippling injuries last season, and will the Ravens kick themselves late in the season without Stover there to put a game-winning FG through the uprights at crunch time.

What player(s) on the Steelers are you most anxious to see taking snaps come Day One?

Thanks for the well wishes, Crow. Good to see you back around! :drink:

Hold your horses. It is reported that Mason has changed his mind about hanging 'em up, which bodes well for Flacco for sure.

http://blogs.nfl.com/2009/08/01/mason-opts-to-return-after-short-lived-retirement/

Mason opts to return after short-lived retirement

Less than a month after surprisingly announcing his retirement, Derrick Mason is making a comeback with the Baltimore Ravens. The veteran receiver will send a letter to the NFL stating his intention to return to the league and is expected to join the Ravens on the field Sunday.

“I needed to evaluate my life, football and my career,” Mason said in a release. “The last several weeks thinking about it and talking with my family was an important time for me and them.”

“I still have an intense fire inside me, and I want to play. My family and I wanted to finish it out the right way. I felt like I had left something undone, and I wanted to finish it.”

When Mason decided to walk away on July 13th, it left the Ravens with Mark Clayton and Demetrius Williams as their most accomplished receivers. Baltimore eventually signed Drew Bennett to a one-year contract, but he retired two days later because he aggravated an old knee injury during his initial tryout.

Mason led Baltimore in catches (80) and receiving yards (1,037) in 2008. As he enters his 13th season in the league, including his fifth with the Ravens, he has 790 receptions for 10,061 yards and 52 touchdowns.

“I think I’m in great shape,” Mason said. “I have been working out, and I was part of the offseason program. I’m ready to get out there with my teammates.”

mmalone
08-01-2009, 03:16 PM
I agree about watching Holmes closely. Of all the players on the team, he is the one with the potential to have a swelled head because of the playoffs last year. He needs 16 games of the same thing for us to have a great year. Of course, my eyes are on Frank Summers mainly because I am a UNLV alumni and few players ever become stars out of here. It would be great if he turned out to be the next bruising RB/FB in the Steeler tradition. Heaven knows, there is no one else here who fills that role. Plus I hope Urbik ends up being a beast and unseats Stapleton.

the first three pre season games, hopefully he plays a good amount, so evryone gets a good look at him. they will know pretty quick if he has the tools, i think he does too. looking forward to seeing parker/summers mendy/summers in those short situations. if it works it will give ben that option and ward and miller will kill em in the secondary off the play action...

RoethlisBURGHer
08-01-2009, 03:18 PM
What's up Crow? Glad to see you found your way back!

I am most interested in Timmons, Sweed, and Mendenhall.

Looks like Mason is back for you guys. I think he retires after this season, he just in the end couldn't let that $4M sitting on the table.

ricksteelers55
08-01-2009, 03:24 PM
Welcome back Crow,you will have to change your pic :p number 57 is now a jet !!!

Mendenhall,Timmons,Sweed and Starks for me are the ones im looking forward to see

Crow-Magnon
08-01-2009, 04:26 PM
Welcome back Crow,you will have to change your pic :p number 57 is now a jet !!!

Mendenhall,Timmons,Sweed and Starks for me are the ones im looking forward to see

Yeah, I need a new avatar. :doh:

Looks like Mason is back for you guys. I think he retires after this season, he just in the end couldn't let that $4M sitting on the table.

and

Hold your horses. It is reported that Mason has changed his mind about hanging 'em up, which bodes well for Flacco for sure

and

Best of luck to you guys this year too. What's up with the WR situation? Have they found a replacement for Mason/Bennett yet?

The "word" has kinda always been that Mason wants/wanted a contract extension, and this "retirement" was a standard ploy to try and force the issue. I don't think it worked quite the way Mason wanted it to. Regardless, while he's not a break-away WR, he certainly is a possession WR. The Ravens have signed a bunch of WR's lately, but none of them are top-tier, so unless Clayton and Williams have true bust-out years, it looks like once again the field will remain unstretched.

The more that I think of the Ravens pick of Oher, the more I think its their intention to try and have guys with LT skill play both OT's and reduce the rush of Harrison and Woodley.

Its an interesting possible plan, because Oher isnt that great of a run blocker and it may signal a shift away from the running game to McLain, McGahee and Rice.......time will tell.

I will agree that Oher's reputation is more of a pass-blocker than it is opening holes for a power running game, but I would have a hard time believing that the GM drafted him just to try and nullify two Steelers LB's and shift the focus away from the other 14 games. I gues time will tell. At least Oher's run blocking did improve in his senior year.

Thank God it's August! One more month of summer and then the real fun begins!

RoethlisBURGHer
08-01-2009, 05:24 PM
I agree with you about Oher, Crow. He may not be the best run blocker, but he can get the job done. But I do think that the Ravens wanted to do their best to neutralize Silverback as Sackzilla.

tony hipchest
08-01-2009, 05:30 PM
How's Mendenhall looking so far? If not for injury, he looked like he would have had a great season last year.

Sweed deserves a closer look, that's for sure.kirwan reports he hears that rahard is in "unbelievable" shape. schefter says he looks bigger, faster, and stronger. both say he is capable of making all the outside speed runs that willie does and capable of pounding it up the middle. it looks like we will have 2 backs who are easilly capable of being top 5 if they were asked to carry the load.

having timmons, sepulveda, sweed, gay, and mendenhall return from injury or ready to take on a more prominent role is like having 5 new free agents who are upgrades over what we had last year.

not to mention our own free agent signings (which happened to be players on our own team) hines, harrison, starks, and heath millions, wh had a great off season.

thats not to even mention our rookies. i cant wait to see what wallace and burnett do for the return games. hood and urbick both seem to be long term stallwarts at their position. at this point, keenan lewis is looking like a cant miss prospect.

im looking most forward to seeing james harrison eat people alive, an improved ike taylor, and a healthy and quick willie parker.

plus the greatness santonio showed in the superbowl and playoffs was just scratching the surface.

i hate to be c)cky but i feel much better than coming off the 15-1 season and heading into our sb year of '05.

Crow-Magnon
08-01-2009, 06:58 PM
having timmons, sepulveda, sweed, gay, and mendenhall return from injury or ready to take on a more prominent role is like having 5 new free agents who are upgrades over what we had last year.

I know exactly how you feel. Having Yanda and Gregg returning to the lineup is a big plus for the Ravens, as will be Dawan Landry.

i hate to be c)cky but i feel much better than coming off the 15-1 season and heading into our sb year of '05.

It's hard NOT to be cocky after a SB victory!

Crow-Magnon
08-01-2009, 07:16 PM
Welcome back Crow,you will have to change your pic :p number 57 is now a jet !!!

Mendenhall,Timmons,Sweed and Starks for me are the ones im looking forward to see

Done! Reed for a Pick Six is always a good one.

JackHammer
08-01-2009, 07:38 PM
I'm really looking forward to seeing Sweed, Mendenhall, and Summers this year. With his size, speed, and ability to get open, Sweed has the potential to be a vast improvement over Washington.

Mendenhall looks to be a big factor in the run game, and seeing what Tony said, he's been working hard in the off season.

Frank the Tank Summers has me excited mostly because he has the coaches excited. He's built like Bettis. He likes to run people over. He has good footwork too. He has all the opportunity to push Carey Davis out of a job this year.

STEELAMANIA
08-01-2009, 07:51 PM
Goodbye Carey Davis.

RoethlisBURGHer
08-01-2009, 07:54 PM
Hey Crow, I got a pic you can use for your avatar!

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v393/Mustangmuscle86/Steelers/Ratbirds%20Smak/polamaluvflacco.jpg

:tt03::flap::sofunny::helmet:

Crow-Magnon
08-01-2009, 08:04 PM
Hey Crow, I got a pic you can use for your avatar!

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v393/Mustangmuscle86/Steelers/Ratbirds%20Smak/polamaluvflacco.jpg

:tt03::flap::sofunny::helmet:


Nah, no good. You can't see anybody's jersey number in that pic! :flap:

Steel_Bus_24
08-01-2009, 10:01 PM
I hope Urbik can step up help get our running game going again

We can't let Ben take all that punishment back there, and having a strong running game is a great way to keep Ben Healthy

BlockMonsta
08-01-2009, 11:05 PM
The Ravens should bench Flacco, I want to see Troy Smith in there. Buckeye nation!

Crow-Magnon
08-02-2009, 06:06 AM
The Ravens should bench Flacco, I want to see Troy Smith in there. Buckeye nation!

Hey, great suggestion! I'll pass that on to Harbaugh. :chuckle:

BlockMonsta
08-02-2009, 06:26 AM
....as you should. Trust me Troy is better then Joe. He's got a good set of wheels, a good arm and he might just challenge the Steelers D:tt03: Joe Cool pssssh...But I did just see a commerical for the Hall of Fame game which is good!

Crow-Magnon
08-02-2009, 06:43 AM
....as you should. Trust me Troy is better then Joe. He's got a good set of wheels, a good arm and he might just challenge the Steelers D:tt03: Joe Cool pssssh...But I did just see a commerical for the Hall of Fame game which is good!

If Troy is better than Flacco, then why did Smith fall to the end of the 5th round in the 2007 draft? Nobody out there wanted a Heisman Trophy QB until the end of the 5th round?

BlockMonsta
08-02-2009, 06:48 AM
Because he is short. He would have won the starting job had he not been sick.

Galax Steeler
08-02-2009, 07:41 AM
That is good news for the ravens mason came back now the roster looks better.

revefsreleets
08-02-2009, 12:34 PM
I hate to play spoiler and give away the ending, but I already know what the Ravens season will be like. 8-8.

So, see ya next August Crow...buh-bye now:sofunny:

Crow-Magnon
08-02-2009, 01:43 PM
I hate to play spoiler and give away the ending, but I already know what the Ravens season will be like. 8-8.

So, see ya next August Crow...buh-bye now:sofunny:

All I can say is....we shall see.

Crow-Magnon
08-02-2009, 06:56 PM
I hate to play spoiler and give away the ending, but I already know what the Ravens season will be like. 8-8.

So, see ya next August Crow...buh-bye now:sofunny:

Actually, no, I can say more. Well, actually I'll ask a question.

What do you base your 8-8 prediction on? Better play within the division by the Browns and Bengals? Better play by the NFC West vs last year's NFC East? Loss of players from last season?

Seriously (if you're serious), what's your 8-8 prediction based on? I see a 11-5 season. 10-6 at worst.

RoethlisBURGHer
08-02-2009, 07:04 PM
Actually, no, I can say more. Well, actually I'll ask a question.

What do you base your 8-8 prediction on? Better play within the division by the Browns and Bengals? Better play by the NFC West vs last year's NFC East? Loss of players from last season?

Seriously (if you're serious), what's your 8-8 prediction based on? I see a 11-5 season. 10-6 at worst.

Well, I was gonna hold off on my Ravens prediction....but here it is:

0-16!!!!!!!!!!! :flap::toofunny:

Crow-Magnon
08-02-2009, 07:09 PM
Well, I was gonna hold off on my Ravens prediction....but here it is:

0-16!!!!!!!!!!! :flap::toofunny:

I SWEAR to you, if that happens, you'll never have to pay for another IC Lite again as long as you live! :drink: :rofl:

steelballs
08-03-2009, 08:46 AM
I SWEAR to you, if that happens, you'll never have to pay for another IC Lite again as long as you live! :drink: :rofl:

I see the Ravens struggling on D this year. Lewis is not in a contract year,
Scott is gone, two thirds of your DB's are gone and a new DC....could be a formula for disaster.

Oher was a nice acquisition for you guys, but to expect too much from this year is a stretch. Gregg will be a plus if he can stay healthy, but I forsee troubles ahead.

Offensively, the return of Mason will simply put you back where you were last year in the receiver corps, no real improvements there and Flacco will have to pass his sophomore test before I deem him a respectable starter. The league has a way of catching up to these second year wonders.

On the Steelers side of the ball...I expect Mendenhall to outshine Wille, Holmes will be much more physical and Harrison, Timmons and Woodley will wreak havoc on the defensive side of the ball.

I see the Steelers having a very good chance of repeating this year if they stay healthy. They had significant injuries last year and got it done and I expect nothing less this year.

Crow-Magnon
08-03-2009, 09:33 AM
I see the Ravens struggling on D this year. Lewis is not in a contract year,
Scott is gone, two thirds of your DB's are gone and a new DC....could be a formula for disaster.

Oher was a nice acquisition for you guys, but to expect too much from this year is a stretch. Gregg will be a plus if he can stay healthy, but I forsee troubles ahead.

Offensively, the return of Mason will simply put you back where you were last year in the receiver corps, no real improvements there and Flacco will have to pass his sophomore test before I deem him a respectable starter. The league has a way of catching up to these second year wonders.

On the Steelers side of the ball...I expect Mendenhall to outshine Wille, Holmes will be much more physical and Harrison, Timmons and Woodley will wreak havoc on the defensive side of the ball.

I see the Steelers having a very good chance of repeating this year if they stay healthy. They had significant injuries last year and got it done and I expect nothing less this year.

Lewis is at the nadir of his career, so while he will no longer be playing for big payouts (which he just got), I think he will be playing to prove something to himself and others. Which is, can a linebacker continue to play at that level after 14 seasons?

Had the Ravens kept Scott and lost Suggs, they'd be in much worse shape. I have feeling that Scott, much like other ex-Ravens LB's like Hartwell and Sharper, will find out they just aren't as good playing elsewhere. The only LB that left the Ravens and continued to be great was Adalius Thomas. Besides, like the Steelers the Ravens always have good LB's in the stable. Jameel McClain or Tavares Gooden will probably be just as good as Scott, and Antwaan Barnes is ready to go, too.

The new DC Mattison knows the players as he was the LB Coach. Since 2001 the Ravens D has had three different coordinators (Lewis, Nolan and Ryan) and it hasn't slowed the defense down a bit.

Oher is an unknown quantity as far as NFL play is concerned. But I think he will turn out to be a great pick. Gregg (so far) appears to be 100% healthy. But that could change quickly.

On the offense I agree with you 100%. Getting Mason back is not a plus, it's an even. The WR corp is no better than it was last year. Unless Demetrius Williams or Mark Clayton really step up, the WR's will have the same impact they had last year, which wasn't much. What I am hopeful about is that Todd Heap will not be called upon to block 2 out of evey 3 plays and he will be back to his previous form of being a threat downfield and across the middle. So far reports from TC are that Heap is in the best shape he's been in years. Getting some good production out of the TE spot would really help Flacco out. And yes, Flacco does need to show that his rookie year was not a fluke and that he has improved his game, especially his decision-making.


As far as your Steelers side of the ball is concerned, I think if Mendenhall is healthy, he is going to be the man in the backfield. Willie is good, but he ain't that good. Mendenhall shows a lot of real promise. I don't know if Holmes will be more physical, but he needs to get more touches. He knows where the end zone is at all times and once he has the ball in his mitts, he is a threat to score.

I have nothing to say about Harrison, Timmons and Woodley that hasn't already been said a thousand times. You have no worries there whatsoever save for fluke injuries.

steelballs
08-03-2009, 09:57 AM
Lewis is at the nadir of his career, so while he will no longer be playing for big payouts (which he just got), I think he will be playing to prove something to himself and others. Which is, can a linebacker continue to play at that level after 14 seasons?

Had the Ravens kept Scott and lost Suggs, they'd be in much worse shape. I have feeling that Scott, much like other ex-Ravens LB's like Hartwell and Sharper, will find out they just aren't as good playing elsewhere. The only LB that left the Ravens and continued to be great was Adalius Thomas. Besides, like the Steelers the Ravens always have good LB's in the stable. Jameel McClain or Tavares Gooden will probably be just as good as Scott, and Antwaan Barnes is ready to go, too.

The new DC Mattison knows the players as he was the LB Coach. Since 2001 the Ravens D has had three different coordinators (Lewis, Nolan and Ryan) and it hasn't slowed the defense down a bit.

Oher is an unknown quantity as far as NFL play is concerned. But I think he will turn out to be a great pick. Gregg (so far) appears to be 100% healthy. But that could change quickly.

On the offense I agree with you 100%. Getting Mason back is not a plus, it's an even. The WR corp is no better than it was last year. Unless Demetrius Williams or Mark Clayton really step up, the WR's will have the same impact they had last year, which wasn't much. What I am hopeful about is that Todd Heap will not be called upon to block 2 out of evey 3 plays and he will be back to his previous form of being a threat downfield and across the middle. So far reports from TC are that Heap is in the best shape he's been in years. Getting some good production out of the TE spot would really help Flacco out. And yes, Flacco does need to show that his rookie year was not a fluke and that he has improved his game, especially his decision-making.


As far as your Steelers side of the ball is concerned, I think if Mendenhall is healthy, he is going to be the man in the backfield. Willie is good, but he ain't that good. Mendenhall shows a lot of real promise. I don't know if Holmes will be more physical, but he needs to get more touches. He knows where the end zone is at all times and once he has the ball in his mitts, he is a threat to score.

I have nothing to say about Harrison, Timmons and Woodley that hasn't already been said a thousand times. You have no worries there whatsoever save for fluke injuries.

I will say that I was happy to hear that Heap is healthy, he hasn't had that luxury for a few years now and he's one player I respect as he's as blue-collar as they come. Flacco will be happy if he stays healthy. I think you underestimate the impact that Scott's departure will cause on D, but only time will tell.

Holmes will be playing about 10 lbs. heavier this year with no fall off in speed. His off-season training regimen has created a beast. I agree he needs more touches and I don't doubt he'll get them as he is truly a TD HO. Willie will be hard pressed to match Mendenhall's physical style and soft hands, but he seems to perform very well when pushed...we'll see.