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Some actual news which came out of “State of the Ravens” presser…

The last few years the message has been the same from owner Steve Bisciotti and G.M. Ozzie Newsome at their annual “State of the Ravens” affair— “we need a better pass rush”, “our offense needs to get better”, “we want to run the ball more”, “we need to find a true number one wide receiver.”

Here thanks to The Sports Daily reporters Chris Rolling and Zach Kruse are some actual news items coming out of the press conference last week:

Ravens expect Terrell Suggs to come back for 2017 season

by Zach Kruse

The Baltimore Ravens may lose receiver Steve Smith Sr. to retirement this offseason, but the team isn’t expecting veteran outside linebacker Terrell Suggs to follow him into life after the NFL.

According to general manager Ozzie Newsome, the Ravens are planning on Suggs, who turns 35 next October, to come back for the 2017 season.

From Jamison Hensley of ESPN:

https://twitter.com/jamisonhensley/status/818903405406130181

Suggs had eight sacks and three forced fumbles for the Ravens in 2016, but he’ll need surgery to repair a biceps injury he suffered in October.

A 14-year NFL veteran, Suggs missed all but one game in 2015 after tearing his Achilles’ tendon in the season opener. He recovered in time to play in 15 of 16 games this season.

Suggs will add at least one more year to a legendary career in Baltimore. A first-round pick of the Ravens in 2003, Suggs has produced 114.5 sacks and 30 forced fumbles, while earning six trips to the Pro Bowl and an NFL Defensive Player of the Year award in 2011. He was also part of a Ravens team that won Super Bowl XLVII in February of 2013.

Suggs is currently 21st in NFL history in sacks, but he could jump as high as 17th with at least 10 sacks next season. Among active players, Suggs trails only Julius Peppers, DeMarcus Ware and Dwight Freeney in sacks.

Even with Suggs likely to return in 2017, expect the Ravens—a team that finished with only 31 sacks this past season—to pursue a pass-rusher in free agency or the NFL draft.

Zach Kruse | January 10, 2017 at 5:43 pm | Categories: News, NFL | URL: http://wp.me/p7JG02-2xRG

Ravens owner wants fewer commercials during games

by Chris Roling

Fans of every NFL team just became huge supporters of Baltimore Ravens owner Steve Bisciotti.

Bisciotti, like pretty much anyone else, thinks the excessive number of commericals hurts the NFL product for viewers. That said, he also noted in a recent interview that reducing the number of commericals would hurt the players. Ryan Mink of the Ravens’ official website captured the comments:

“It doesn’t take a genius to figure out that nobody wants to see two minutes of commercials, come back, kick the ball and then go to a minute-and-a-half of commercials. I’ve thought that was absurd since I was 20 years old.”

“Again, if you change that, it could mean a reduction in income, but that’s going to hit the players more significantly than it’s going to hit the owners. I still don’t know any owner that’s in this business because of the money.

It’s an interesting balancing conversation. The players will mostly object to anything impacting their wallets and rightfully so given the nature of the sport.

But then again, a better viewing experience might help stem the tide of cable droppages, if not encourage fans to attend more games. It could also simply help bring more fans to the sport, perhaps balancing the budget scales if the league loses money by axing the number of ads.

This is one of many issues facing the league this offseason. In Bisciotti, fans who want to see fewer ads have an ally.

Chris Roling | January 17, 2017 at 12:06 pm | Categories: News, NFL, The Sports Daily | URL:http://wp.me/p7JG02-2yJP

Ravens don’t count out Steve Smith ending retirement

by Chris Roling

Is Baltimore Ravens wideout Steve Smith really retired?

The guy who made his career on gritty, physical play doesn’t seem like one to hang up the cleats. This is especially the case after a season in which he caught 70 passes for 799 yards and five touchdowns, improvements on the year prior.

Count Ravens owner Steve Bisciotti as one of the skeptical many, as captured by ESPN’sJamison Hensley:

“I haven’t given up hope that Steve Smith is going to come walking in here in September,” Bisciotti said with a smile. “We’ll see about that character. I wouldn’t count him out.”

Hensley says Bisciotti was joking, but knowing Smith, his walking back through that door halfway through training camp next summer wouldn’t be anything close to a surprise.

Smith, of course, made his retirement letter public last week:

https://twitter.com/89SteveSmith/status/817344533272870912

The Ravens could sure use another year out of Smith, who at the age of 37 finished second on the team in receiving. Baltimore has plenty of avenues to upgrade the weapons around Joe Flacco this year, but having a reliable veteran stick around is as good as it sounds.

More importantly, the fans would love another year out of Smith. At the end of the day, everyone should want to see Smith do what is best for himself and his family. But like Bisciotti hints, it’s hard not to think that might be his unannounced return.

Chris Roling | January 11, 2017 at 9:49 am | Categories: News, NFL, The Sports Daily | URL: http://wp.me/p7JG02-2xWu
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