Ravens’ Lamar Jackson showed rapper Mike Jones some love(VIDEO)

After defeating the Tennessee Titans last Sunday in the wild card game, Ravens QB Lamar Jackson was a happy man. Following his first playoff victory, he showed legendary Houston rapper Mike Jones some love. You remember Mike Jones, whose debut album “Who Is Mike Jones?” dropped in 2005. Jones had many hits on that album, including “Still Trippin” and “Back Then.”

Obviously, based on his reaction, Jackson is a big fan of Jones. When USA Today reporter Mike Jones was called on to ask Jackson a question, the former MVP started laughing, and eventually, he explained why.

Watch below:

NFL announces schedule for Divisional Round next weekend

With the wild card round almost done, the NFL has announced tonight the schedule of sites, dates, and times for the Divisional Playoffs on January 16-17.

Saturday, January 16:

NFC:    4:35 PM (ET)  Los Angeles Rams (11-6) at Green Bay Packers (13-3) (FOX, FOX Deportes)

AFC:    8:15 PM (ET)  Baltimore Ravens or Pittsburgh Steelers at Buffalo Bills (14-3) (NBC, Universo)

Sunday, January 17:

AFC:    3:05 PM (ET)  Cleveland Browns or Baltimore Ravens at Kansas City Chiefs (14-2) (CBS, CBS All Access, ESPN Deportes)

NFC:    6:40 PM (ET)  Tampa Bay Buccaneers (12-5) at New Orleans Saints (13-4) (FOX, FOX Deportes)

Giants’ Williams: ‘We’re basically treating it like the playoffs right now’

Daunting challenges rooted in history, statistics and athleticism will greet the Giants when they face the Baltimore Ravens tomorrow in M&T Bank Stadium.

The Giants haven’t won in Baltimore since Sept. 15, 1963, when they defeated the Colts, 37-28. Okay, that’s misleading because they’ve since played there just twice, but both of those games – also played in December – were eminently forgettable. In 2004, rookie Eli Manning had an 0.0 passer rating and was replaced in a game for performance reasons for the only time in his career in a 37-14 loss. Eight years ago, the Giants lost, 33-14, as the Ravens gained 533 yards (309 passing, 224 on the ground), and owned the ball for more than 39 minutes. And we don’t need to discuss what happened when the teams met in Super Bowl XXXV 20 years ago.

Now the Giants are 5-9 and hoping to end a two-game losing streak in which they scored just 13 total points. They can win the NFC East title if they defeat the Ravens and Dallas and the Washington Football Team loses at least one of its final two games. But a Giants loss coupled with a Washington victory tomorrow will make Washington the division champions.

“Not to think about the playoffs or anything like that, but we’re basically treating it like the playoffs right now,” defensive lineman Leonard Williams said. “We know what’s at stake and we know that we have to win these last two games basically to go to the playoffs. Starting now is basically our playoffs. That’s kind of how we’re treating this game.”

Baltimore, which has defeated the three other NFC East teams, is 9-5, a record perhaps skewered by a COVID-influenced three-game losing streak that forced them to play a Wednesday night game in Pittsburgh without several players, notably quarterback Lamar Jackson. The Ravens scored 121 points in defeating Dallas, Cleveland and Jacksonville the last three weeks.

“Obviously, they’re getting guys back now healthy,” Giants coach Joe Judge said. “They’re really hitting their stride. This is a very good team. It’s going to take everything we have to prepare for them. We have to have our best on Sunday.”

Baltimore will make that difficult. The Ravens are the only team in the top six in the league in both points scored (fourth at 28.8 a game) and points allowed (sixth at 20.5). Baltimore leads the NFL in both rushing yardage per game (172.7) and per carry (5.2). Defensively, the Ravens rank ninth by allowing 343.7 yards a game and their third-down defense is tied for fourth (allowing conversions on just 36.6% of opponents attempts).

The Ravens have plenty of incentive; they’ve not clinched a playoff berth and could miss the postseason at 11-5 if they don’t get help.

Safety Logan Ryan last season played for the Tennessee Titans when they took leads of 14 and 22 points on their way to a 22-12 victory against the top-seeded Ravens in an AFC Divisional Playoff Game in Baltimore.

“The reason why my team had success against the Ravens last year is that we came out, we started fast, we got a lead,” Ryan said. “I think when you get a lead on the Ravens it makes them play behind, it changes their defense and their offensive schemes a little bit from playing from behind. They’re built to play from ahead because they’re really good at running the ball, they’re really aggressive on defense and you want to get those guys behind on the scoreboard early. So, starting fast is a major point for us and be ready to go on Sunday, believe you can win the game. Be ready to go and start fast is definitely a key point for us.”

The Ravens tied the NFL high with seven players selected to the Pro Bowl. One of those excluded was Jackson, the league’s most valuable player in 2019. In 13 games, Jackson has completed 64.8% of his passes and thrown for 21 touchdowns and eight interceptions. He leads all NFL quarterbacks with a team-high 828 rushing yards and has scored seven touchdowns on the ground. After running for 1,206 yards last year, Jackson is the only quarterback in NFL history with at least 800 yards rushing in consecutive seasons.

Jackson is 9-0 in starts against NFC teams.

“I think this guy is a unicorn in terms of how he can play,” Judge said. “He really makes explosive plays with his legs, along with the arm strength and the plays down the field he’s capable of making right there.

“This player is explosive. He’s very elusive, he’s extremely fast, he has great running instincts, he has very good balance and body control, he’s tough to take down, he breaks a lot of tackles. He can get to his top speed very quickly, but then also decelerate and changes direction at will. This is a guy, he’s a much different type of player at that position than really any other quarterback I can think of in the league. Obviously, he’s having a tremendous amount of success with what he does.”

After facing Seattle’s Russell Wilson and Arizona’s Kyler Murray this month, Giants defensive coordinator Patrick Graham has had to devise a plan for another dynamic, multi-dimensional quarterback in Jackson.

“He’s different, he’s very different,” Graham said. “…This guy is so fast, he’s so big, he’s so dynamic with the ball. When you sell out for the run game, he will throw the ball over your head and it will be a touchdown with the targets they have. With Hollywood (Marquise Brown) and (Mark) Andrews. It’s a unique challenge. I’m looking forward to it. Guys have to get ready for it. It’s going to be fun. We just have to see if we can execute.”

Their hopes of staying in the division race might depend on it.

“The weather’s cold, most teams are physical this time of year, most teams run the ball, most teams want to stop the run,” Ryan said. “It’s really about executing your details, executing the game, being good situationally and when we tend to do that, we tend to win the game. To us, it’s about cleaning up our details and executing and getting ready to play the Ravens.”

*Wide receiver Golden Tate will not play because of a calf injury. Tate is fourth on the team with 35 catches for 388 yards. He has two touchdown receptions.

Quarterback Daniel Jones (hamstring/ankle), linebacker Blake Martinez (ankle) and cornerback Darnay Holmes (knee) are questionable.

Via: giants.com

Jags’ Marrone on Ravens: ‘This team was clearly the better team today’

The Jacksonville Jaguars went into Baltimore with little to no shot to beat the Ravens. Obviously, the Ravens(9-5) are a better team than the Jaguars, so for Jacksonville to win this game would have been a long shot, and ultimately, they were routed 40-14.

Jacksonville(1-13) has now lost 13 straight games.

“I mean, I can tell you what I told them in the locker room,” Marrone said after the game. “I told them that, ‘Hey listen, we came out here today and this team was clearly the better team today. There’s a lot of things that—there’s some things, obviously, I thought we did well and then—but for the most part, I’m not going to point those out. Obviously, we weren’t good enough at all those…’ I told the players after the game, kind of gave them—talked to them about our schedule next week, talked about our mindset, talking about playing our last home game, and really trying to put this game behind us quickly and move forward.

The Jaguars knew last night that they would be without their punter Logan Cooke, who did not make the trip to Baltimore due to illness. In his place, K Aldrick Rosas did the punting for Jacksonville. Rosas had three punts with an average of 36 yards, and he fumbled a snap. According to Marrone, losing Cooke was not the reason they lost, but it did change things.

“We were looking at, or I was looking at, the analytics of it for gain of field position, where Aldrick [Rosas] was as far as punting,” Marrone said. “So basically, we kind of expanded that zone more so, where if you’re looking at fourth-and-6 or less, you have a 40 percent chance of really making it. And if we go more than that, then obviously the number decreases, and you’ve got to make some decisions. So I guess my point is, obviously, like anything, you make adjustments when things occur. Did I feel forced to do that? No, I just thought that was the best chance for our team to win the game. And I want to make sure that just because Logan wasn’t able to play, that didn’t cost us the game.”

Jaguars QB Gardner Minshew, who made his first start for the team since October, threw for 226 yards and two touchdowns on Sunday, but he was sacked five times and lost a fumble. After the game, Marrone did not name a starter for next week against the Bears.

“I don’t know,” Marrone said about who will be the starter next week. “I know everyone is going to talk to me about—that’s a question afterward. I knew you guys, I just think right now, I’m really, I really want to be in there to support these players and these coaches right now. And I’m not ready to say this or that, and all this other stuff, or really comment on playing time. And that’s not a knock on Gardner, and it’s not a knock on me not having a decision in my mind right now. My mind right now is totally focused. These guys, it’s tough to see. I know we’re pros, I know it’s like that, but when you see guys trying, they just, whatever it is that causes us not to get there or come with the win.”

Sunday was not all bad news for the Jaguars. The Jets won today, and with the victory, Jacksonville and New York have the same records, but due to strength of schedule(Jaguars having an easier strength of schedule), if the Jaguars and Jets end up with the same record, Jacksonville will get the number one pick. Therefore, the Jaguars could possibly get their hands on Clemson’s Trevor Lawrence, so all is not lost for Jacksonville.

Lamar Jackson tops Pro Bowl voting by fans

Baltimore Ravens quarterback LAMAR JACKSON received 704,699 total fan votes to lead all NFL players in balloting for the 2020 Pro Bowl presented by Verizon. Fan voting ended on Thursday, December 12.

Seattle quarterback RUSSELL WILSON (539,768 votes) ranked second overall, while Kansas City quarterback PATRICK MAHOMES (468,838 votes), Minnesota running back DALVIN COOK (431,748 votes) and Carolina running back CHRISTIAN MCCAFFREY (406,477 votes) rounded out the top five.

Four of the top five vote-getters – Jackson, Mahomes, Cook and McCaffrey – are under the age of 25. Additionally, nine first or second-year players led their conference in votes received at their respective positions.

The BALTIMORE RAVENS led all clubs in total votes received. The SAN FRANCISCO 49ERSNEW ORLEANS SAINTSGREEN BAY PACKERS and SEATTLE SEAHAWKS rounded out the top-five teams to receive the most fan votes.

Pro Bowl rosters will be announced on Tuesday, December 17 live on NFL Network’s Pro Bowl special “NFL Total Access: Pro Bowl Players Revealed” at 8:00 PM ET.

Players for the game are determined by the consensus votes of fans, players and coaches. Each group’s vote counts one-third toward determining the 88 All-Star players who will be selected to the Pro Bowl. The NFL is the only sports league that combines voting by fans, coaches and players to determine its All-Star teams. It was also the first professional sports league to offer online all-star voting in 1995.

The 2020 Pro Bowl presented by Verizon, which kicks off at 3:00 PM ET, will be televised live on ESPN, ESPN Deportes and simulcast on ABC and Disney XD – the third time the game will be available on both broadcast and cable networks.

NFL PRO BOWL TOP-FIVE VOTE-GETTERS

POS.

NAME

TEAM

VOTES

QB

Lamar Jackson

Baltimore Ravens

704,699

QB

Russell Wilson

Seattle Seahawks

539,768

QB

Patrick Mahomes

Kansas City Chiefs

468,838

RB

Dalvin Cook

Minnesota Vikings

431,748

RB

Christian McCaffrey

Carolina Panthers

406,477


NFL PRO BOWL TOP VOTE-GETTERS BY TEAM

TEAM

Baltimore Ravens

San Francisco 49ers

Green Bay Packers

New Orleans Saints

Seattle Seahawks

AFC & NFC LEADING VOTE-GETTERS BY POSITION

POS.

CONF.

NAME, TEAM

VOTES

POS.

CONF.

NAME, TEAM

VOTES

QB

AFC

Lamar Jackson, Baltimore

704,699

DE

AFC

Joey Bosa, L.A. Chargers

252,555

QB

NFC

Russell Wilson, Seattle

539,768

DE

NFC

Nick Bosa, San Francisco

358,911

RB

AFC

Nick Chubb, Cleveland

316,008

DT

AFC

Cameron Heyward, Pittsburgh

221,693

RB

NFC

Dalvin Cook, Minnesota

431,748

DT

NFC

Arik Armstead, San Francisco

273,403

FB

AFC

Patrick Ricard, Baltimore

152,877

OLB

AFC

T.J. Watt, Pittsburgh

251,248

FB

NFC

Kyle Juszczyk, San Francisco

384,200

OLB

NFC

Preston Smith, Green Bay

166,347

WR

AFC

DeAndre Hopkins, Houston

275,684

ILB

AFC

Devin Bush, Pittsburgh

150,548

WR

NFC

Michael Thomas, New Orleans

371,365

ILB

NFC

Bobby Wagner, Seattle

207,026

TE

AFC

Mark Andrews, Baltimore

331,796

CB

AFC

Marcus Peters, Baltimore

231,601

TE

NFC

George Kittle, San Francisco

340,624

CB

NFC

Richard Sherman, San Francisco

259,476

T

AFC

Orlando Brown, Baltimore

188,787

SS

AFC

Jamal Adams, N.Y. Jets

186,068

T

NFC

David Bakhtiari, Green Bay

194,207

SS

NFC

Vonn Bell, New Orleans

98,449

G

AFC

Marshal Yanda, Baltimore

192,580

FS

AFC

Minkah Fitzpatrick, Pittsburgh

209,245

G

NFC

Zack Martin, Dallas

121,529

FS

NFC

Marcus Williams, New Orleans

93,593

C

AFC

Maurkice Pouncey, Pittsburgh

152,128

P

AFC

Brett Kern, Tennessee

93,586

C

NFC

Travis Frederick, Dallas

140,449

P

NFC

Michael Dickson, Seattle

101,965

K

AFC

Justin Tucker, Baltimore

187,814

ST

AFC

Tyler Matakevich, Pittsburgh

87,863

K

NFC

Wil Lutz, New Orleans

106,747

ST

NFC

Raheem Mostert, San Francisco

113,638

RS

AFC

Mecole Hardman, Kansas City

91,358

RS

NFC

Deonte Harris, New Orleans

84,085

Ravens, Chiefs, Patriots, Bills, Seahawks, 49ers can clinch playoff spots in Week 14

It’s that time of the year when teams begin to fight it out for the 12 playoff spots in the NFL, and at this point, the New Orleans Saints are the only team in the NFL that has clinched a playoff berth.

As we enter Week 14, six teams can clinch playoff spots.

Here are the playoff scenarios for Week 14 in the NFL:

AFC

CLINCHED: None

BALTIMORE RAVENS (10-2) (at Buffalo (9-3), Sunday, 1:00 PM ET, CBS)

Baltimore clinches AFC North division title with:

  1. BAL win + PIT loss or tie OR

  2. BAL tie + PIT loss

Baltimore clinches playoff berth with:

  1. BAL win OR

  2. BAL tie + HOU loss or tie OR

  3. BAL tie + TEN loss or tie OR

  4. HOU loss + IND loss or tie + OAK-TEN tie

BUFFALO BILLS (9-3) (vs. Baltimore (10-2), Sunday, 1:00 PM ET, CBS)

Buffalo clinches playoff berth with:

  1. BUF win + OAK loss or tie + HOU loss + IND loss or tie

KANSAS CITY CHIEFS (8-4) (at New England (10-2), Sunday, 4:25 PM ET, CBS)

Kansas City clinches AFC West division title with:

  1. KC win + OAK loss

NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS (10-2) (vs. Kansas City (8-4), Sunday, 4:25 PM ET, CBS)

New England clinches playoff berth with:

  1. NE win OR

  2. NE tie + PIT loss OR

  3. NE tie + HOU loss or tie OR

  4. NE tie + TEN loss or tie OR

  5. HOU loss + IND loss or tie + OAK-TEN tie

NFC

CLINCHED: New Orleans Saints – NFC South Division

SAN FRANCISCO 49ERS (10-2) (at New Orleans (10-2), Sunday, 1:00 PM ET, FOX)

San Francisco clinches playoff berth with:

  1. SF win + LAR loss or tie OR

  2. SF tie + LAR loss

SEATTLE SEAHAWKS (10-2) (at L.A. Rams (7-5), Sunday, 8:20 PM ET, NBC)

Seattle clinches playoff berth with:​

  1. SEA win or tie

Tank on coin toss at Ravens’ game: ‘Maybe I’ll be fighting inside this same stadium in the future’

Baltimore native, Gervonta Davis, received an outpour of support from 80k football fans during Sunday’s Ravens’ home opening game. The two-time world champion was invited by the NFL team to officiate the coin toss for Sunday’s opener at M&T Bank Stadium against the Arizona Cardinals.

This is yet another accomplishment to a rapid-growing list of accolades the rising star has accumulated in his hometown. On August 17th a week before Davis vs. Nunez fight, Davis was invited by the Baltimore Orioles to throw the first pitch at their home game against the Boston Red Sox. To kick off Gervonta’s historical hometown fight, Mayor Jack Young honored the undefeated Baltimore native with a key to the city ceremony on July 24th. A few days later on July 27th, Davis successfully defended his WBA world title in front of a sold-out crowd at Royal Farms Arena. A major milestone for Davis, who became the first Baltimore native to make a title defense in his hometown since Harry Jeffra in 1940. Davis is now a part of a limited list of Baltimore world champions including Joe Gans, who was also the first African American world champion in boxing in 1902, and Vincent Pettaway, a former super welterweight champion who showed his support for the young star by being in attendance at Davis’ hometown fight.

The accumulation of his success in the ring and the love he has for his city has sky-rocketed the twenty-four-year-old to star status. Davis is an integral part of the Baltimore community and he’s shown much gratitude for the love he’s received from his hometown.

“There was a moment when I was standing on the field where everything just stopped, said Davis. It was surreal. I’ve walked out to the ring in front of a sold-out crowd before, but never 80,000 fans. This is a new reach for me and my brand and I’m just thankful to have the support I do from my fans and my city. This is just the beginning, who knows, maybe I’ll be fighting inside this same stadium in the future.”

A city that is known for violence is the same city he credits his success and humble demeanor to. The two-time world champion is making it his responsibility to use his platform to help rebuild the city that raised him, through non-profit initiatives and events such as his recent Back-to-School giveaway held on August 23rd at the Upton Boxing Center, where he was joined by NBA star Carmelo Anthony, and handed out backpacks, school supplies, clothes, and shoes to several hundred community members.

In the midst of creating his legacy and experiencing his recent success, Davis has exemplified leadership and heart and he’s never shied away from admitting the impact Baltimore has had on his burgeoning career. Looking ahead, Davis is set to be recognized for his excellence by the city of Baltimore at the beginning of October with a parade in his honor. He will be joined by Mayor Jack Young and a few other key members of the community. The event is open to the public and an official date will be announced in the coming weeks. 

Photo: Mayweather Promotions

2018 NFL Playoff Scenarios for Week 15

With the NFL season winding down, some teams are fighting for their playoff lives, while others are fighting for seeding.

Here are some playoffs scenarios for Week 15 in the NFL:

NFC

CLINCHED: Los Angeles Rams – NFC West division title

                     New Orleans Saints – NFC South division title

NEW ORLEANS SAINTS (11-2) (at Carolina (6-7), Monday night, 8:15 PM ET, ESPN)

New Orleans clinches a first-round bye with:

1)    NO win + CHI loss or tie OR

2)    NO tie + CHI loss

LOS ANGELES RAMS (11-2) (vs. Philadelphia (6-7), Sunday night, 8:20 PM ET, NBC)​​

Los Angeles clinches a first-round bye with:

1)    LAR win + CHI loss or tie OR

2)    LAR tie + CHI loss

CHICAGO BEARS (9-4) (vs. Green Bay (5-7-1), Sunday, 1:00 PM ET, FOX)

Chicago clinches NFC North division title with:

1)    CHI win OR

2)    MIN loss OR

3)    CHI tie + MIN tie

Chicago clinches a playoff berth with:

1)    CHI tie OR

2)    WAS loss or tie

DALLAS COWBOYS (8-5) (at Indianapolis (7-6), Sunday, 1:00 PM ET, FOX)

Dallas clinches NFC East division title with:

1)    DAL win OR

2)    DAL tie + PHI loss or tie + WAS loss or tie OR

3)    PHI loss + WAS loss

SEATTLE SEAHAWKS (8-5) (at San Francisco (3-10), Sunday, 4:05 PM ET, FOX)

Seattle clinches a playoff berth with:

1)    SEA win OR

2)    SEA tie + MIN loss + CAR loss or tie OR

3)    SEA tie + MIN loss + PHI loss or tie + WAS loss or tie OR

4)    SEA tie + CAR loss or tie + PHI loss or tie + WAS loss or tie

AFC

CLINCHED: Kansas City Chiefs – Playoff berth

KANSAS CITY CHIEFS (11-2) (vs. Los Angeles Chargers (10-3), Thursday night, 8:20 PM ET, FOX/NFL Network/Amazon)

Kansas City clinches AFC West division title and a first-round bye with:

1)    KC win

Kansas City clinches home-field advantage throughout AFC playoffs with:

1)    KC win + NE loss or tie

NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS (9-4) (at Pittsburgh (7-5-1), Sunday, 4:25 PM ET, CBS)

New England clinches AFC East division title with:

1)    NE win + MIA loss or tie OR

2)    NE tie + MIA loss

New England clinches a playoff berth with:

1)    NE win + TEN loss or tie OR

2)    NE tie + BAL loss + TEN loss + IND loss or tie

HOUSTON TEXANS (9-4) (at New York Jets (4-9), Saturday, 4:30 PM ET, NFL Network)

Houston clinches AFC South division title with:

1)    HOU win + IND loss or tie + TEN loss or tie OR

2)    HOU tie + IND loss + TEN loss

Houston clinches a playoff berth with:

1)    HOU win + MIA loss or tie + PIT loss OR

2)    HOU win + MIA loss or tie + BAL loss or tie OR

3)    HOU tie + IND loss or tie + BAL loss + MIA loss OR

4)    HOU tie + IND loss or tie + PIT loss + BAL loss + MIA tie OR

5)    HOU tie + IND loss or tie + PIT loss + BAL win + MIA loss OR

6)    HOU tie + TEN loss or tie + BAL loss + MIA loss OR

7)    HOU tie + TEN loss or tie + PIT loss + BAL loss + MIA tie OR

8)    HOU tie + TEN loss or tie + PIT loss + BAL win + MIA loss

LOS ANGELES CHARGERS (10-3) (at Kansas City (11-2), Thursday night, 8:20 PM ET, FOX/NFL Network/Amazon)

Los Angeles clinches a playoff berth with:

1)    LAC win or tie OR

2)    MIA loss or tie + PIT loss OR

3)    MIA loss or tie + BAL loss or tie OR

4)    MIA loss or tie + IND loss or tie + TEN loss or tie OR

5)    PIT loss + IND loss or tie + TEN loss or tie OR

6)    BAL loss or tie + IND loss or tie + TEN loss or tie​

Ray Lewis talks battles with Steelers HOF center Dermontti Dawson(Video)

Hall of Famer Ray Lewis had many battles on the field throughout his career, especially in his own division. The Pittsburgh Steelers and Baltimore Ravens hate each other, and it showed on the field. For Lewis and the Ravens to have success, they had to go through the Steelers.

Earlier in his career, Lewis had many battles with former Steelers Hall of Fame center Dermontti Dawson. Last Sunday, at the Enrishnees’ Roundtable in Canton, OH., Lewis discussed what it took to play against Dawson and how it helped him to become a better player:

Take a listen:

 

Anquan Boldin on returning to NFL: ‘If I wanted to, I know I could'(VIDEO)

When Anquan Boldin retired from the NFL last August, two weeks after signing with the Buffalo Bills, the goal for Boldin was to do more work in his community.

Recently, the Bills released Boldin from the retired list. Now, if Boldin decides to play again, he can sign with any team he chooses.

Boldin, 37, believes he can still play in the NFL.

“If I wanted to, I know I could,” Boldin said about returning to the NFL.

We caught up with Boldin at Torrey Smith’s Family Fund Charity Basketball game in Baltimore.

He discussed a wide range of things, including what he is up to now, his thoughts on Michael Crabtree to the Ravens, and what happened after the Super Bowl 47 with him and the Ravens.

Take a listen: