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August 12, 2008

Ravens beef up backfield

lo.jpgThe signing of 37-year-old Lorenzo Neal might not seem like much at first glance, but it solves two problems at once. Neal provides much-needed depth at fullback following the release of Justin Green yesterday, and possibly could free up La Ron McClain to occasionally act as a 260-pound tailback.

That might be helpful in the short-term, with injured Willis McGahee figuring to miss almost all of training camp and rookie Ray Rice looking like the Lone Ranger in the offensive backfield. For the rest of the story, here's Jamison Hensley's account from training camp in Westminster.

Lorenzo Neal

Posted by Peter Schmuck at 3:29 PM | | Comments (3)


Burgess - James Johnson and George Sherrill are major league arms.

Forgot to add that we just need to remind the manager that he can use Johnson when the situation warrants.

This is a good move for the Ravens. Neal doesn't have to be an every down player for us to be effective. He could come in on passing downs and short yard situations and really help with pass blocking and lead blocking.

Cam Cameron is familiar with him and was never afraid to use him as a pass catching thread out of the backfield. I can see this offense utilizing the check down receivers a lot, meaning McGahee, Rice, McClain, and now Neal should see the ball in the air a bit this year. The Ravens keep saying they want to stretch the field, but there is no WR on this team that is a real deep threat. Maybe if Figurs had some hands he might be.

The Ravens also picked up another TE, I don't know much about him, but I'd have to bet he is known more as a blocker. We need a big TE that can actually help block. Heap can't do it, Wilcox is undersized as a TE, and Bergen looked bad in the first pre season game.

"J" is for Joe Flacco?

Great move by Ravens. Now they have a 1-2 punch. If Rice matures (or McGahey stops the dance steps) the Ravens will have a 1-2-3 punch like the Skins' Portis, Betts, and Rock Cartwright.

The question remains at QB. I hope we see a great performance by Smith. He is my personal favorite. However, the Ravens really do not have a bonified franchise QB.

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About Peter Schmuck
Peter Schmuck wants you to know that, contrary to popular belief, he is more than just a bon vivant, raconteur and collector of blousy flowered shirts. He is a semi-respected journalist who has covered virtually every sport -- except luge, of course – and tackled issues that transcend the mere games people play. If that isn’t enough to qualify him to provide witty, wide-ranging commentary on the sports world ... and the rest of the world, for that matter ... he is an avid reader of history, biography and the classics, as well as a charming blowhard who pops off on both sports and politics on WBAL Radio. That means you can expect a little of everything in The Schmuck Stops Here, but the major focus will be keeping you up to the minute on Baltimore’s major sports teams and themes, whether it’s throwing up the Orioles lineup the minute it’s announced or updating you on the latest sprained ankle in Owings Mills. Oh, and by the way, that’s Mr. Schmuck to you.

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