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Late for Work 11/30: Snow, Rain Possible For ‘SlobberKnocker’

Plus, NFL denied Harrison’s fine appeal, and who’d be a bigger loss – Oher or McClain?

Posted by Sarah Ellison on Tuesday, November 30th, 2010 at 9:10 am | Categories: Late For Work, Sarah Ellison

Snow, Rain Possible For ‘SlobberKnocker’

Peter King predicts one of the all-time “slobberknockers” Sunday night in the Inner Harbor when the Steelers come to town.

The slobberknocker could get sloppier as rain and snow showers are possible and temperatures could dip as low as 30 degrees, according to AccuWeather.com.

The battle for control of the AFC North is still five days out, so we’ll want to keep an eye on changing weather patterns.

NFL Denies Appeal of Fines by Steelers’ James Harrison

Pittsburgh Steelers linebacker James Harrison sought to reduce the punishment levied out for two illegal hits he delivered in October.

According to Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, the NFL denied Harrison’s appeal of the fines, which totaled $95,000.

First there was the $75,000 fine for hitting Cleveland Browns receiver Mohamed Massaquoi. The other, for $20,000, came two weeks later for hitting New Orleans Saints quarterback Drew Brees. That doesn’t count a third possible fine after a roughing the passer penalty on Buffalo Bills quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick last Sunday.

“They said it was multiple occurrences and called it an egregious act,” said Harrison’s agent, Bill Parise.

Harrison visits M&T Bank Stadium Sunday and you’d hope the egregious hits don’t persist. The Ravens suffered three injuries to starters last week, and an illegal hit on Joe Flacco or a receiver or tight end going over the middle would increase the likelihood of another injury.

Who’d Be A Bigger Loss: Oher or McClain?

Talking about Harrison brings up an interesting question, one that a fan asked of the Baltimore Sun’s Ken Murray yesterday.

“Ken, which player would be the bigger [loss] for the Ravens? Michael Oher or Le’Ron McClain, if one could not play against the Steelers?”

Mike Florio of PFT.com said Oher’s primary task on Sunday night would be to keep Harrison from “separating Joe Flacco’s head from his body.” If Oher can’t go, that task would likely fall to his backup Oniel Cousins.

Who would you consider to be the bigger loss if he can't play against the Pittsburgh Steelers?

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On the other hand, without Le’Ron McClain, the power running game, which normally notches up in December, takes a hit. Beyond that, the offense’s personnel groups and formations change quite a bit. The Ravens don’t have another fullback on their roster, which means either a tight end or a running back would try to fill the shoes of the two-time Pro Bowler.

“Without McClain, there is a reduced running game, “Murray explained. “Without Oher, you have no quarterback. I don’t like Oneil Cousins’ chances against the Steelers after seeing what happened last year. My feeling is Oher will try to go, and depending on his ability to use the knee, play or not. Wrong two guys to be hurt going into a Steelers’ game.”

Both players are invaluable, and the Ravens feel they have solid backup options to successfully move forward. But who would you consider the bigger loss if he couldn’t go Sunday?


Would Roethlisberger’s Injury Prevent Him from Playing Sunday?

USA TODAY’s Sean Leahy wonders if Ben Roethlisberger’s foot injury (he suffered an ankle sprain in a win against the Bills) is serious enough to threaten to keep him out of Sunday’s game at Baltimore.

Just like Head Coach John Harbaugh is doing with the information on his three injured starters, expect the Steelers to hold the real answer to Leahy’s question close to the vest.

None the less, here’s Leahy’s feelings on the matter:

“There is no bigger game left on the Steelers’ schedule than Sunday’s visit to archrival Baltimore,” wrote Leahy. “Roethlisberger missed the team’s loss to the Ravens in Week 4 while he served a suspension, and he will likely need more than a foot sprain to keep him out of the next matchup.”

For the record Harbaugh expects Big Ben to play, but the head coach said the team will be ready for any potential changes.

Cardinals Could Look To Bulger Next Season

Backup quarterback Marc Bulger’s contract with the Ravens is up after this season. Baltimore has yet to use his services in a regular-season game, but other teams could use him as a starter now.

One of those teams is the Arizona Cardinals, who ESPN’s Adam Schefter says should have signed Bulger last offseason. For now, they are stuck without a long-term solution at the position. They currently have Derek Anderson and rookies Max Hall and John Skelton on their roster.

“Just as another former St. Louis Ram, Kurt Warner, once shined for the Cardinals, Bulger could do the same,” wrote Schefter. “Arizona should have signed him last offseason when it had the chance, but Bulger wanted more than the Cardinals were willing to pay. They might get another chance this offseason.

“If they could do that, and then draft another young quarterback relatively high, that might be the best plan. But there is work to do at the position, as you and everyone can see.”

If Bulger and the Ravens don’t renew a contract, it would leave a job open in Baltimore. Who would be Flacco’s next backup?

More Than a Dual Threat: Ray Rice

A great 71-second commercial posted by nikesportswear on YouTube entitled “More Than a Dual Threat: Ray Rice.”



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