Recent stories by Mike Preston

Stevenson working hard toward another lacrosse national championship

5:42 PM EDT, April 18, 2014

Mike Preston: Stevenson working hard toward another lacrosse national championship

It's been almost a year since Stevenson won the Division III national championship in men's lacrosse, and coach Paul Cantabene still hasn't taken a vacation.

Ravens' offseason closes AFC North gap

9:30 PM EDT, April 14, 2014

Mike Preston: Ravens' offseason closes AFC North gap

On paper, the Ravens have picked up significant ground on the rest of the AFC North. They retained most of their key players in free agency and upgraded in other areas.

 Under heightened pressure, Johns Hopkins' Pietramala reinvents himself

3:20 PM EDT, April 11, 2014

Mike Preston: Under heightened pressure, Johns Hopkins' Pietramala reinvents himself

Johns Hopkins men's lacrosse coach Dave Pietramala appears to be cool while the whirlwind blows around him.

 Ward-Schultz connection lifts No. 1 Loyola past Navy in 2OT, 7-6

5:21 PM EDT, April 5, 2014

Ward-Schultz connection lifts No. 1 Loyola past Navy in 2OT, 7-6

Attackmen Justin Ward and Brian Schultz had put themselves in this game-winning situation at least a hundred times, first with the Maryland RoughRiders, their club team, and then later in college.

To stabilize right tackle, Ravens should look to draft

10:52 PM EDT, April 7, 2014

Mike Preston: To stabilize right tackle, Ravens should look to draft

The Ravens can't seem to tackle this problem.

No. 1 Loyola men's lacrosse has chemistry of a champion

2:07 PM EDT, April 4, 2014

Mike Preston: No. 1 Loyola men's lacrosse has chemistry of a champion

With five weeks remaining before the NCAA men's lacrosse tournament, there is no clear-cut favorite to win the championship, but No. 1 Loyola Maryland appears to be the team to beat.

By not signing LeGarrette Blount, Ravens made a big mistake

6:49 PM EDT, April 1, 2014

Mike Preston: By not signing LeGarrette Blount, Ravens made a big mistake

With a lot of local attention over the weekend focused on running back Ray Rice's recent indictment on a charge of aggravated assault and Opening Day for the Orioles, some big news went unnoticed.

Kerwick's life lessons define Cornell lacrosse

1:51 PM EDT, March 28, 2014

Mike Preston: Kerwick's life lessons define Cornell lacrosse

When Cornell's lacrosse program was going through troubled times last fall and the early part of the winter, interim head coach Matt Kerwick's mind shot back to the summer of 2012.

No. 8 Virginia beats No. 10 Hopkins in lacrosse, 11-10 in OT

8:48 PM EDT, March 22, 2014

No. 8 Virginia beats No. 10 Hopkins in lacrosse, 11-10 in OT

Virginia midfielder Greg Coholan scored his third goal of the game with 1:09 left in overtime as the No. 8 Cavaliers defeated No. 10 Johns Hopkins, 11-10, in college lacrosse Saturday.

Ravens retooling; now it's up to Flacco

8:38 PM EDT, March 17, 2014

Mike Preston: Ravens retooling; now it's up to Flacco

The next move is up to quarterback Joe Flacco.

Ravens hitting bargain basement

12:14 AM EDT, March 25, 2014

Mike Preston: Ravens hitting bargain basement

Ravens general manager Ozzie Newsome is in his bargain-basement mode these days.

Hopkins-Virginia lacrosse rivalry still a Stanwick story

1:37 PM EDT, March 21, 2014

Hopkins-Virginia lacrosse rivalry still a Stanwick story

For four seasons, Johns Hopkins lacrosse coach Dave Pietramala had to find a way to defend Virginia attackman Steele Stanwick. On Saturday, the roles will be reversed because No. 8 Virginia has to find a way to stop his brother Wells, an attackman for the No. 10 Blue Jays.

Ravens still have work to do with the offensive line

6:52 PM EDT, March 12, 2014

Mike Preston: Ravens still have work to do with the offensive line

The Ravens have had success in the first two phases of rebuilding their offense, but there is still a major concern about the third.

No. 3 Loyola Md. holds off Army, 7-6, for 6th straight win

6:18 PM EDT, March 15, 2014

No. 3 Loyola Md. holds off Army, 7-6, for 6th straight win

No. 3 Loyola Maryland had to battle two opponents Saturday. The Greyhounds had to play through the emotions of a big win against Duke last Sunday and then take on a tough Army team.

In signing wide receiver Steve Smith, Ravens make a statement that's loud and clear

8:34 PM EDT, March 14, 2014

Mike Preston: In signing wide receiver Steve Smith, Ravens make a statement that's loud and clear

While free-agent wide receiver Steve Smith was in town visiting the Ravens, they rolled out the red carpet. He had a nice dinner, an evening on the town, and private meetings with general manager Ozzie Newsome, coach John Harbaugh and offensive coordinator Gary Kubiak.

No. 5 Loyola sprints to 14-7 win over No. 6 Duke in men's lacrosse

9:49 PM EDT, March 9, 2014

No. 5 Loyola sprints to 14-7 win over No. 6 Duke in men's lacrosse

Duke coach John Danowski tried a number of combinations, including flip-flopping his goalie twice, but the Blue Devils had no solutions for Loyola's offense Sunday night.

Loyola defenseman Joe Fletcher has added a word to the lacrosse lexicon with his lock-down skills

3:18 PM EST, March 7, 2014

Mike Preston: Loyola defenseman Joe Fletcher has added a word to the lacrosse lexicon with his lock-down skills

The term around the Loyola lacrosse team is "Fletched," as in the opposing attackman got "Fletched." Or when the Greyhouds' star defenseman runs away from two attackmen after stealing a ground ball, they both got "Fletched."

The Ravens need Monroe, but not at a franchise-tag price

8:10 PM EST, March 3, 2014

Mike Preston: The Ravens need Monroe, but not at a franchise-tag price

The Ravens made a smart move by not putting the franchise tag on left offensive tackle Eugene Monroe on Monday. That's a designation used on a player who is one of the best at his position.

Time for shot clocks to be visible on lacrosse fields

5:51 PM EST, February 28, 2014

Mike Preston: Time for shot clocks to be visible on lacrosse fields

Visible 30 second shot clocks will soon appear on lacrosse fields, but not soon enough for a lot of college coaches.

Dennis Pitta should be paid a tight end's salary

9:33 PM EST, February 24, 2014

Mike Preston: Dennis Pitta should be paid a tight end's salary

The Ravens and Dennis Pitta are still far from reaching a new contract, but hopefully they aren't haggling over whether Pitta should get paid as a wide receiver or a tight end.

Lacrosse recruiting starting way too young

7:36 PM EST, February 21, 2014

Mike Preston: Lacrosse recruiting starting way too young

Luke Shilling doesn't have a driver's license yet, but he is on the road to success in lacrosse.

Duke knows the challenge of repeating

1:36 PM EST, February 7, 2014

Mike Preston: Duke knows the challenge of repeating

Duke lacrosse coach John Danowski has been down this road before, but not with so many bumps.

The fall has come quickly for Rice

5:03 PM EST, February 17, 2014

Mike Preston: The fall has come quickly for Rice

Few pro athletes have fallen out of favor so quickly in Baltimore as Ravens running back Ray Rice.

Manning should consider walking away, even after a tough loss

6:56 PM EST, February 3, 2014

Mike Preston: Manning should consider walking away, even after a tough loss

When the Seattle Seahawks' Percy Harvin returned the opening kickoff of the second half 87 yards for a touchdown, all the anxious moments turned toward Denver Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning.

Kubiak will need time to teach Flacco, mold Ravens offense

6:49 PM EST, January 30, 2014

Mike Preston: Kubiak will need time to teach Flacco, mold Ravens offense

The Ravens hired one of the best offensive minds in the NFL as Gary Kubiak was named the team's offensive coordinator , but don't expect miracles in the 2014 season.

Analyst says the Ravens can make a few improvements with this year's draft

6:45 PM EST, February 10, 2014

Mike Preston: Analyst says the Ravens can make a few improvements with this year's draft

Despite the team's failure to make the NFL playoffs for the first time in six years, an overhaul of the offensive coaching staff and possible salary cap problems, ESPN draft analyst Mel Kiper Jr. believes the Ravens could be serious contenders again in 2014.

John Harbaugh has to make the most of this opportunity

11:45 PM EST, January 27, 2014

Mike Preston: John Harbaugh has to make the most of this opportunity

The Ravens already have a theme for the 2014 season. It's called "One Chance," produced by Steve Bisciotti, written by Ozzie Newsome and starring John Harbaugh.

Who's best for the Ravens' offense? Try ex-Detroit Lions coordinator Scott Linehan.

9:16 PM EST, January 23, 2014

Mike Preston: Who's best for the Ravens' offense? Try ex-Detroit Lions coordinator Scott Linehan.

Even as the Ravens' search for an offensive coordinator appears to be moving away from him, former Detroit Lions assistant Scott Linehan would be their best option.

Super Bowl will come down to the team with the better defense

4:14 PM EST, January 20, 2014

Mike Preston: Super Bowl will come down to the team with the better defense

It's hard to root against Denver Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning because of his sustained standard of success. He runs the offense like a conductor leads a symphony.

Picking an offensive coordinator just the first step to fixing Ravens

8:50 PM EST, January 16, 2014

Mike Preston: Picking an offensive coordinator just the first step to fixing Ravens

Ravens head coach John Harbaugh said there was an outpouring of candidates for the team's offensive coordinator position, which was expected, since the Ravens are one of the NFL's top franchises.

A productive offseason hinges on whether the Ravens, Suggs can reach an agreement

6:45 PM EST, February 14, 2014

Mike Preston: A productive offseason hinges on whether the Ravens, Suggs can reach an agreement

The line in the sand has to be drawn soon.

The best NFL matchup this weekend doesn't include the Patriots

7:00 PM EST, January 13, 2014

Mike Preston: The best NFL matchup this weekend doesn't include the Patriots

Peyton Manning versus Tom Brady. It used to be the NFL's ultimate matchup because it featured the modern era's top quarterbacks.

Bisciotti is patient, but won't tolerate more failure

6:41 PM EST, January 8, 2014

Mike Preston: Bisciotti is patient, but won't tolerate more failure

Owner Steve Bisciotti appeared calm and in a relatively good mood during the annual "State of the Ravens" address. He was disappointed in the team for failing to make the playoffs for the first time in six seasons, but not too upset.

If Caldwell doesn't go, Ravens should keep him

6:57 PM EST, January 2, 2014

Mike Preston: If Caldwell doesn't go, Ravens should keep him

As Jim Caldwell lines up interviews with the Detroit Lions and the Washington Redskins for vacant head coaching positions, there are some who would prefer he'd get one of those jobs so the Ravens could hire a new offensive coordinator.

Ravens should bring back Arthur Jones, but let a couple of others go

9:09 PM EST, December 30, 2013

Mike Preston: Ravens should bring back Arthur Jones, but let a couple of others go

Now that the 2013 season is over, the Ravens will begin part two of their rebuilding process. There won't be the cleansing of superstar talent like last offseason, but it will be almost as interesting.

Ravens took a series of chances in 2013 that didn't pay off

7:30 PM EST, December 29, 2013

Mike Preston: Ravens took a series of chances in 2013 that didn't pay off

The Ravens took a lot of gambles for the 2013 season, and they lost most of them.

The Patriots took advantage of a predictable Ravens' offense

9:35 PM EST, December 23, 2013

Mike Preston: The Patriots took advantage of a predictable Ravens' offense

The Ravens have less than a week to achieve an offensive harmony that has eluded them all season.

Terrell Suggs is missing the sizzle in his game

5:30 PM EST, December 19, 2013

Mike Preston: Terrell Suggs is missing the sizzle in his game

Is there any sizzle left in T-Sizzle?

Bengals have talent and home advantage, and a good chance of losing to Ravens

8:18 PM EST, December 26, 2013

Mike Preston: Bengals have talent and home advantage, and a good chance of losing to Ravens

As long as the Bengals reside in Cincinnati, there is always hope the Ravens will win. And if the Ravens can't find a way to win, the Bengals might find a way to lose.

Ravens missed a chance to prove they belong with the top-notch teams

11:06 PM EST, December 22, 2013

Mike Preston: Ravens missed a chance to prove they belong with the top-notch teams

The Ravens said they were treating the matchup with the New England Patriots as a playoff game, and they got a look at what a top-notch playoff team with an elite quarterback looks like.

Ravens are going to need touchdowns if they want to extend their season

9:25 PM EST, December 17, 2013

Mike Preston: Ravens are going to need touchdowns if they want to extend their season

It would appear the Ravens are heading into trouble because they struggle scoring touchdowns inside the red zone. The latest display came Monday night when the Ravens had to settle for six field goals from Justin Tucker to defeat the Detroit Lions, 18-16.

Ravens show they are ready for prime time

12:04 AM EST, December 17, 2013

Mike Preston: Ravens show they are ready for prime time

Now, everyone will take the Ravens seriously.

Luck is back on the Ravens' side at the right time of year

7:42 PM EST, December 8, 2013

Mike Preston: Luck is back on the Ravens' side at the right time of year

The Ravens had so much luck a year ago that it appeared to all have run out. There was the fourth-and-mile check down pass to Ray Rice in San Diego and the Mile High Miracle pass to Jacoby Jones in the postseason.

The Ravens' offense takes on whatever personality fits week to week

6:20 PM EST, December 12, 2013

Mike Preston: The Ravens' offense takes on whatever personality fits week to week

There are few moments during a season when NFL coaches are completely honest and Ravens coach John Harbaugh had one of those Monday afternoon.

We may never see first-class defense in the NFL again

7:15 PM EST, December 9, 2013

Mike Preston: We may never see first-class defense in the NFL again

Former head coach turned NBC commentator Tony Dungy was sitting in the studio and acted as if he'd just unleashed the secret of the NFL season when he said the chink in the Denver Broncos' armor was their defense.

After a dark season, the Ravens get just the late-season spark they need

1:08 AM EST, November 29, 2013

Mike Preston: After a dark season, the Ravens get just the late-season spark they need

This could be the spark the Ravens need to make a late-season run.

11:36 PM EST, November 28, 2013

Mike Preston: Mike Preston's Report Card

QUARTERBACK

Steelers-Ravens primetime matchup no longer looks like a dud

6:47 PM EST, November 25, 2013

Mike Preston: Steelers-Ravens primetime matchup no longer looks like a dud

A few weeks ago there was laughter around the NFL because the primetime game Thanksgiving Day featured two losing teams: the Ravens and the Pittsburgh Steelers. But now, there is a renewed excitement.

Time for the Ravens to  give this team back to the defense

4:16 PM EST, November 21, 2013

Mike Preston: Time for the Ravens to give this team back to the defense

The Ravens need to go old school this weekend and for the rest of the season.

Wildcat might give Ravens QB Joe Flacco the kick he needs

7:16 PM EST, November 24, 2013

Mike Preston: Wildcat might give Ravens QB Joe Flacco the kick he needs

Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco appeared to get the message Sunday.

Pride is going to have to carry the Ravens through the last part of the season

9:31 PM EST, November 17, 2013

Mike Preston: Pride is going to have to carry the Ravens through the last part of the season

The Ravens don't play like a championship caliber team but play with the heart of defending champions.

Ravens need one big wide receiver to complement Torrey Smith

5:59 PM EST, November 18, 2013

Mike Preston: Ravens need one big wide receiver to complement Torrey Smith

If the NFL draft was held today, the Ravens should find themselves a big, tall wide receiver.

In one weekend, the Ravens became the team to beat in the AFC North

5:21 PM EST, November 14, 2013

Mike Preston: In one weekend, the Ravens became the team to beat in the AFC North

Once the Ravens had defeated the Cincinnati Bengals on Sunday, reality returned to the AFC North and the Ravens still appear to be the team to beat in the division.

The Ravens need a lot of things but they really need a playmaker

5:47 PM EST, November 7, 2013

Mike Preston: The Ravens need a lot of things but they really need a playmaker

It was inevitable. As soon as the Ravens endured a losing streak without Ray Lewis, there was going to be a barrage of questions about leadership.

Replacing Ray Rice isn't the answer to the Ravens' offensive woes

6:47 PM EST, November 11, 2013

Mike Preston: Replacing Ray Rice isn't the answer to the Ravens' offensive woes

The answer appears to be simple, but there are no quick fix solutions. There is no magic wand or fantastic scheme.

The Ravens need a little hope if they want to return to the postseason

5:49 PM EST, November 4, 2013

Mike Preston: The Ravens need a little hope if they want to return to the postseason

Ravens fans are living on the hopes of last season.

Joe Flacco earned the big contract, but he needs a supporting cast

10:26 PM EST, November 3, 2013

Mike Preston: Joe Flacco earned the big contract, but he needs a supporting cast

The answer to one of the biggest questions about the 2013 season is almost clear now.

The Ravens shouldn't be able to claim a win against the Bengals

7:51 PM EST, November 10, 2013

Mike Preston: The Ravens shouldn't be able to claim a win against the Bengals

The game should have ended in a tie.

Ravens are facing 'must win' on Sunday

6:49 PM EDT, October 28, 2013

Mike Preston: Ravens are facing 'must win' on Sunday

The Ravens aren't officially at the halfway point of the 2013 season, but they face a "must win" situation Sunday in Cleveland against the Browns.

If the Ravens want to improve, it is time to say 'bye'

9:51 PM EDT, October 20, 2013

Mike Preston: If the Ravens want to improve, it is time to say 'bye'

The Ravens need a bye week.

There is only one answer for the Ravens' running game troubles

6:01 PM EDT, October 17, 2013

Mike Preston: There is only one answer for the Ravens' running game troubles

When Ravens head coach John Harbaugh was asked recently about fixing his offense, particularly the running game, he said there wasn't enough time to entertain such a discussion.

Gambling didn't pay off for John Harbaugh and the Ravens

7:33 PM EDT, October 13, 2013

Mike Preston: Gambling didn't pay off for John Harbaugh and the Ravens

Ravens coach John Harbaugh has to modify his philosophy.

Joe Flacco took a licking and kept on ticking

8:21 PM EDT, October 6, 2013

Mike Preston: Joe Flacco took a licking and kept on ticking

Joe Flacco's numbers hardly told the story. They were mediocre, but Flacco wasn't. The greatness of his play was drenched in a T-shirt, soiled on his pants and clearly evident from the slow walk out of the locker room.

Moving forward means the Ravens have to leave behind the excuses

6:13 PM EDT, October 31, 2013

Mike Preston: Moving forward means the Ravens have to leave behind the excuses

It is the time of year for victories, not excuses.

Ravens are looking up to the Bengals in the AFC North

6:33 PM EDT, October 21, 2013

Mike Preston: Ravens are looking up to the Bengals in the AFC North

The Cincinnati Bengals are starting to assert themselves in the AFC North, and that's scary.

Ravens can't afford to take a step back against the Steelers

6:24 PM EDT, October 14, 2013

Mike Preston: Ravens can't afford to take a step back against the Steelers

The Ravens can do more than just beat the Pittsburgh Steelers on Sunday. They can bury them for the remainder of the 2013 season.

 Ravens have potential, but lack consistency

6:50 PM EDT, October 10, 2013

Mike Preston: Ravens have potential, but lack consistency

Five weeks into the NFL season, the Ravens still haven't shown much improvement.

Getting back to the run is going to be the key for the Ravens

6:30 PM EDT, September 30, 2013

Mike Preston: Getting back to the run is going to be the key for the Ravens

The Ravens have taken this NFL is a pass-happy league thing too far.

Ravens secondary is going to face quite the test against the Packers

6:31 PM EDT, October 7, 2013

Mike Preston: Ravens secondary is going to face quite the test against the Packers

The Ravens had a character win against Miami on Sunday. Because of injuries, they were low on receivers as well as offensive linemen. They were playing in heat and had not won a game on the road this season.

Ed Dickson isn't frustrated by his slow start, he's motivated

5:17 PM EDT, September 26, 2013

Mike Preston: Ed Dickson isn't frustrated by his slow start, he's motivated

After three games, Ravens tight end Ed Dickson has more dropped passes than catches. He got booed in the home opener and his playing time in the pass offense might be decreasing.

Preston: Ravens offense is a work in progress

7:54 PM EDT, September 23, 2013

Mike Preston: Preston: Ravens offense is a work in progress

Ravens coach John Harbaugh raised a few eyebrows Sunday afternoon when he said the Ravens offense was as far along as it could be following the team's 30-9 win over the Houston Texans.

Like Sunday's loss, some games make you yearn for the past

8:26 PM EDT, September 29, 2013

Mike Preston: Like Sunday's loss, some games make you yearn for the past

Maybe before the creation of the salary cap nearly 20 years ago, a loss like this one would be a good indication of where the team was headed.

Ravens waited until Week 3 to make a big statement

7:11 PM EDT, September 22, 2013

Mike Preston: Ravens waited until Week 3 to make a big statement

Few picked the Ravens to beat the Houston Texans Sunday and no one predicted a Ravens blowout. Three weeks into the NFL season, the Ravens made a huge statement in a big game.

Preston: There is no need to worry about Ravens kicker Justin Tucker

4:43 PM EDT, September 19, 2013

Mike Preston: Preston: There is no need to worry about Ravens kicker Justin Tucker

Maybe if it was a veteran kicker and he missed two field goals in the previous game, the concern wouldn't be so great. But when it is Justin Tucker and it is only game No. 2 of his second season, there is a lot of interest.

Ravens still working on developing receivers

4:35 PM EDT, September 12, 2013

Mike Preston: Ravens still working on developing receivers

Despite high praise for being one of the best drafting teams in the NFL, the Ravens still have one significant area to improve: developing wide receivers.

Ravens fans just need a little patience

6:39 PM EDT, September 9, 2013

Mike Preston: Ravens fans just need a little patience

The Ravens were beaten soundly by the Denver Broncos last Thursday night, but it was no big deal. If they lose that convincingly to the Cleveland Browns at home Sunday, then it is time for concern.

Ravens don't need to rock the boat at running back

9:10 PM EDT, September 16, 2013

Mike Preston: Ravens don't need to rock the boat at running back

This is no time for a running-back controversy, and there doesn't need to be one soon.

Ravens need to find someone who can catch the ball

1:18 AM EDT, September 6, 2013

Mike Preston: Ravens need to find someone who can catch the ball

The warning sign came early in the game, as soon as the first offense went onto the field. The Ravens started Marlon Brown, an undrafted rookie, at wide receiver.

Defensive line could be the Ravens' best

9:46 PM EDT, August 19, 2013

Mike Preston: Defensive line could be the Ravens' best

After the Atlanta Falcons pummeled the Ravens' defensive front last week with 170 rushing yards on 40 carries, coordinator Dean Pees was not pleased. Against the Carolina Panthers on Thursday night, he expects the unit to be better.

Being the underdog is a familiar spot for the Ravens

5:37 PM EDT, September 2, 2013

Mike Preston: Being the underdog is a familiar spot for the Ravens

It appears to be an improbable task but not impossible.

Depth is a concern for the Ravens offensive line

5:31 PM EDT, August 26, 2013

Mike Preston: Depth is a concern for the Ravens offensive line

It is not the beginning of the football season unless there are questions about the Ravens offensive line.

Ravens offense failed to build any sort of momentum against Panthers

11:44 PM EDT, August 22, 2013

Mike Preston: Ravens offense failed to build any sort of momentum against Panthers

There is only one preseason game remaining before the 2013 regular season begins, and there is still no indication how the Ravens offense will perform in the opener against the Broncos in Denver.

Jimmy Smith still struggling to prove he was worth a first-round pick

10:18 PM EDT, August 15, 2013

Mike Preston: Jimmy Smith still struggling to prove he was worth a first-round pick

The Ravens are running out of excuses and cornerback Jimmy Smith is running out of time.

Ravens haven't distanced themselves from Week 1 loss just yet

8:02 PM EDT, September 15, 2013

Mike Preston: Ravens haven't distanced themselves from Week 1 loss just yet

It is two weeks into the regular season, and there is still a lot to learn about the 2013 Ravens because nothing much came out of Sunday's 14-6 win over Cleveland. The same weaknesses that were exposed last week against Denver showed up again against the Browns.

Want something positive from loss? Injured trio looked good in return

11:41 AM EDT, August 23, 2013

Mike Preston: Want something positive from loss? Injured trio looked good in return

Despite their first loss in preaseason to the Carolina Panthers, the Ravens had to be delighted with the performances of three injured players who received their first substantial playing time Thursday night.

Preseason hasn't been a good start for Joe Flacco

6:22 PM EDT, August 16, 2013

Mike Preston: Preseason hasn't been a good start for Joe Flacco

It isn't time to worry yet, but at least keep an eye on the situation.

Ravens banking on 'trash heap' with Brandon Stokley, Dallas Clark

8:31 PM EDT, August 12, 2013

Mike Preston: Ravens banking on 'trash heap' with Brandon Stokley, Dallas Clark

The last time the Ravens visited the "trash heap" for a receiver, they traded a fourth-round draft pick to the Buffalo Bills for Lee Evans in 2011. And now, they've brought in tight end Dallas Clark and wide receiver Brandon Stokley.

For hungry Ravens coach John Harbaugh, yesterday's gone

9:13 AM EDT, September 4, 2013

Mike Preston: For hungry Ravens coach John Harbaugh, yesterday's gone

There are no fancy slogans this season, like "Play like a Raven," or talk of 53 mighty, mighty men.

We'll never see another tackle like Jonathan Ogden

9:40 PM EDT, August 3, 2013

Mike Preston: We'll never see another tackle like Jonathan Ogden

As he delivered his induction speech into the Pro Football Hall of Fame Saturday night, Ravens offensive tackle Jonathan Ogden was as cool and humble as he was on the field during his 12 seasons in Baltimore.

Jonathan Ogden vs. Ray Lewis: Who was the greatest Raven?

10:36 PM EDT, August 1, 2013

Mike Preston: Jonathan Ogden vs. Ray Lewis: Who was the greatest Raven?

It is an argument that has gone on for nearly a decade: Who is the greatest player in Ravens history, offensive tackle Jonathan Ogden or linebacker Ray Lewis?

Ravens' game No. 1 fails to give an answer about No. 2 receiver

9:50 PM EDT, August 9, 2013

Mike Preston: Ravens' game No. 1 fails to give an answer about No. 2 receiver

Before the start of training camp, the Ravens were looking for a No.2 wide receiver.

Art Donovan wasn't from here, but he epitomized Baltimore

8:12 PM EDT, August 4, 2013

Mike Preston: Art Donovan wasn't from here, but he epitomized Baltimore

There was a message left on the office phone one cold night in 2001, but the caller didn't leave his name. It was just an old raspy voice wanting to say hi.

It's time for the Ravens to bring back Vonta Leach

8:46 PM EDT, July 28, 2013

Mike Preston: It's time for the Ravens to bring back Vonta Leach

The Ravens were just finishing the short-yardage period at practice and rookie fullback Kyle Juszczyk had been getting stuffed like a turkey in preparation for Thanksgiving. He got rocked by safety James Ihedigbo and then by linebackers Arthur Brown and Bryan Hall.

Bryant McKinnie overweight? Hey, no surprise there.

9:57 PM EDT, July 25, 2013

Mike Preston: Bryant McKinnie overweight? Hey, no surprise there.

Not breaking news: Ravens left offensive tackle Bryant McKinnie wasn't on the practice field for the first full day of training camp.

Ravens 'D' shows promise in the preseason opener

10:31 PM EDT, August 8, 2013

Mike Preston: Ravens 'D' shows promise in the preseason opener

As a group, the first-team defense was intact for nearly a quarter and the signs were good.

Suggs may have a new look but he is the same Suggs

6:31 PM EDT, July 23, 2013

Mike Preston: Suggs may have a new look but he is the same Suggs

The new T-Sizzle is pretty much the same as the old T-Sizzle.

Diversity efforts in lacrosse slow to pay off, but it's a start

7:44 PM EDT, June 17, 2013

Mike Preston: Diversity efforts in lacrosse slow to pay off, but it's a start

When Chazz Woodson, a midfielder for Major League Lacrosse's Ohio Machine, stated recently that a racial epithet had been directed at him three times during his collegiate career at Brown, once by an opposing player and twice by teammates, the old myth about lacrosse resurfaced.

With training camp next month, Ravens have built strong contender once again

7:05 PM EDT, June 21, 2013

Mike Preston: With training camp next month, Ravens have built strong contender once again

With about one month before the opening of training camp, the Ravens have had one of their best offseasons in recent years, and coach John Harbaugh has set the perfect tone going into the 2013 regular season.

Johns Hopkins made the right move in joining Big Ten

6:00 PM EDT, June 3, 2013

Mike Preston: Johns Hopkins made the right move in joining Big Ten

Maybe 15 or 20 years ago, ego and image would have prevented Johns Hopkins from joining the Big Ten. But university officials put those aside any of those lingering issues as the Blue Jays announced Monday that they will be joining the conference in 2015.

One last moment after a championship season for the Ravens

9:06 PM EDT, June 5, 2013

Mike Preston: One last moment after a championship season for the Ravens

— It is time to put the Ravens Super Bowl championship of 2012-13 away in the history books.

Ravens defense ends minicamp with impressive performance

6:47 PM EDT, June 13, 2013

Mike Preston: Ravens defense ends minicamp with impressive performance

It's not unusual for the defense to be ahead of the offense at this point, but it appears the Ravens have a chance to be special again.

With new-look defense, Ravens' Dean Pees 'very, very pleased with the effort'

6:55 PM EDT, May 31, 2013

Mike Preston: With new-look defense, Ravens' Dean Pees 'very, very pleased with the effort'

A year ago, Ravens defensive coordinator Dean Pees was the new kid on the block. Now, he's teaching a bunch of new players.

It's evident that Cornell will ride to NCAA men's title this weekend

2:57 PM EDT, May 24, 2013

Mike Preston: It's evident that Cornell will ride to NCAA men's title this weekend

Privately, a lot of fans are picking unseeded Cornell to win the NCAA Division I lacrosse championship here this weekend — but publicly, they urge caution because the 2013 regular season has been so unpredictable.

Mock, Pannell send Cornell past Ohio State, 16-6

6:48 PM EDT, May 18, 2013

Mock, Pannell send Cornell past Ohio State, 16-6

The Cornell men's lacrosse team is on a mission.

Yale goalie Eric Natale living the dream against No. 1 Syracuse

4:35 PM EDT, May 17, 2013

Mike Preston: Yale goalie Eric Natale living the dream against No. 1 Syracuse

Yale goalie Eric Natale doesn't want his dream to become a nightmare.

Ravens' MVP this season may not be on the field

8:32 PM EDT, May 6, 2013

Mike Preston: Ravens' MVP this season may not be on the field

The Ravens' Most Valuable Player of the 2013 season could be Mark Smith.

Let the Bryant McKinnie soap opera begin

5:21 PM EDT, May 3, 2013

Mike Preston: Let the Bryant McKinnie soap opera begin

OK, so now that the Ravens have re-signed left offensive tackle Bryant McKinnie to a two-year contract, the real drama begins.

After tough start, John Danowski kept Duke on track toward national championship

6:08 PM EDT, May 27, 2013

Mike Preston: After tough start, John Danowski kept Duke on track toward national championship

When almost everyone else thought their season was over in early March, Duke's lacrosse players were not too concerned.

Ravens may have No. 2 receiver already on their roster

9:39 PM EDT, May 20, 2013

Mike Preston: Ravens may have No. 2 receiver already on their roster

Whenever the conversations about the leading candidates for the No. 2 receiver come up, Ravens officials like to mention several names including Deonte Thompson, David Reed, LaQuan Williams and Tandon Doss.

Parity has arrived in college men's lacrosse

3:29 PM EDT, May 13, 2013

Mike Preston: Parity has arrived in college men's lacrosse

There has been talk about parity in college lacrosse for years, but finally there is evidence in the NCAA Division I tournament, a place where some thought it might not be on display for another decade.

After successful draft, Ravens need to focus on finding a left tackle

5:54 PM EDT, April 28, 2013

Mike Preston: After successful draft, Ravens need to focus on finding a left tackle

The Ravens still have holes. They need to find a starting left tackle, and they could use a No. 2 receiver and add depth at the linebacker and offensive line positions as well.

Duke holds off Cornell's late push in Division I lax semifinal

7:28 PM EDT, May 25, 2013

Duke holds off Cornell's late push in Division I lax semifinal

— Nearly three weeks into the 2013 regular season, No. 7 Duke was virtually a game or two away from being eliminated from postseason play. Now, the Blue Devils are only a game away from winning a second national championship in four years.

Ravens get younger, faster on defense in first two rounds

11:27 PM EDT, April 26, 2013

Mike Preston: Ravens get younger, faster on defense in first two rounds

In theory, the defending Super Bowl champion isn't supposed to get stronger through the NFL draft because the team has the last pick in each round.

Ravens may have a 'situation' mapping out their offensive priorities

9:35 PM EDT, April 15, 2013

Mike Preston: Ravens may have a 'situation' mapping out their offensive priorities

It's a great problem to have to solve.

Next investment for the Ravens should be on the offensive line

5:51 PM EDT, April 8, 2013

Mike Preston: Next investment for the Ravens should be on the offensive line

The Ravens seem to have everything in place on offense.

Offseason moves show Ravens are poised to contend again

5:11 PM EDT, April 1, 2013

Mike Preston: Offseason moves show Ravens are poised to contend again

Two months after winning the Super Bowl, the Ravens are in position to have a good draft and make another serious run at a championship.

DeNapoli scores 7 goals in Towson's 12-9 win over UMBC

10:32 PM EDT, March 19, 2013

DeNapoli scores 7 goals in Towson's 12-9 win over UMBC

The two best players were on the opposite ends of the field Tuesday night, and they both played for Towson.

Mike Preston: No. 8 Loyola hopes to make a statement vs. No. 1 Denver

12:07 PM EDT, April 12, 2013

Mike Preston: Mike Preston: No. 8 Loyola hopes to make a statement vs. No. 1 Denver

Despite being the defending national champion and winning nine of 11 games this season, Loyola needs to make a statement in 2013.

Life returning to normal for Ravens coach John Harbaugh

6:30 PM EST, March 4, 2013

Mike Preston: Life returning to normal for Ravens coach John Harbaugh

Ravens head coach John Harbaugh is back into the routine at the Castle. He is turning down speaking engagements and book deals and watching video of potential draft picks.

No. 4 Maryland avoids upset with 11-8 win over Navy

1:18 AM EDT, April 6, 2013

No. 4 Maryland avoids upset with 11-8 win over Navy

No. 4 Maryland scored the final three goals of the third quarter to seize control of the game and put away a stubborn Navy team, 11-8, Friday night at Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium.

No. 5 Terps men bounce back with 9-7 win over No. 13 Virginia

6:31 PM EDT, March 30, 2013

No. 5 Terps men bounce back with 9-7 win over No. 13 Virginia

Maryland rediscovered itself Saturday, and Virginia is still searching.

Chris Canty, Marcus Spears were right players at right price for Ravens

5:53 PM EDT, March 19, 2013

Mike Preston: Chris Canty, Marcus Spears were right players at right price for Ravens

Ravens general manager Ozzie Newsome is back to his old theme: "right player, right price."

Ravens haven't missed out on much this offseason

6:19 PM EDT, March 15, 2013

Mike Preston: Ravens haven't missed out on much this offseason

The Ravens almost lost another key player in free agency.

Penn State could be lacrosse's surprise team in 2013

8:14 PM EST, March 1, 2013

Mike Preston: Penn State could be lacrosse's surprise team in 2013

Every year in college lacrosse there seems to be a Delaware, Lehigh or Loyola, a team no one figured to be one of the nation's top contenders.

Navy coach Rick Sowell not losing faith in his team

5:46 PM EDT, March 22, 2013

Mike Preston: Navy coach Rick Sowell not losing faith in his team

There are rebuilding jobs at other colleges and universities throughout the country, and then there is trying to turnaround a program at one of the nation's service academies.

Still time for Virginia lacrosse team to turn its season around

3:40 PM EDT, March 29, 2013

Mike Preston: Still time for Virginia lacrosse team to turn its season around

Virginia coach Dom Starsia has always hedged a little over talk of parity in college lacrosse, but he is slowly crossing over.

Suggs is saving the talk for the season

5:51 PM EDT, March 25, 2013

Mike Preston: Suggs is saving the talk for the season

The new general of the Ravens defense had been quiet ever since the team won the Super Bowl in early February.

More changes could be on the horizon for the Ravens

8:25 PM EDT, March 11, 2013

Mike Preston: More changes could be on the horizon for the Ravens

As soon as the Super Bowl ended and quarterback Joe Flacco signed a long term contract, the real business was going to begin as far as reshaping the Ravens.

Slow start might be too tough for even Duke to overcome

9:34 PM EST, March 8, 2013

Mike Preston: Slow start might be too tough for even Duke to overcome

The trick might be too great even for Duke coach John Danowski to pull off this season.

Loyola, Maryland men's lacrosse teams won't have problem gearing up for rematch

5:37 PM EST, February 22, 2013

Mike Preston: Loyola, Maryland men's lacrosse teams won't have problem gearing up for rematch

Loyola head coach Charley Toomey thought assistant Dan Chemotti made perfect sense when he talked him into playing No. 3 Maryland in between games against Towson and UMBC.

Johns Hopkins cruises past UMBC, sets sights on Syracuse

8:59 PM EST, March 8, 2013

Johns Hopkins cruises past UMBC, sets sights on Syracuse

It was preparation night for both UMBC and Johns Hopkins on Friday at Homewood Field.

Theatrical Ray Lewis shouldn't make himself the storyline this week

10:27 PM EST, January 28, 2013

SUPER BOWL XLVII

Mike Preston: Theatrical Ray Lewis shouldn't make himself the storyline this week

It's been nearly 12 years since Ray Lewis played in his only other Super Bowl, but he is still almost as big as the game.

Patriots' Vince Wilfork is one big problem for Ravens

5:16 PM EST, January 17, 2013

Mike Preston: Patriots' Vince Wilfork is one big problem for Ravens

For a big man, Vince Wilfork moves around a lot. On one snap, he can be at left defensive end or tackle. On another snap, he can be at the same position on the right side.

Nothing will top Ravens' first Super Bowl win, but this one was close

7:09 PM EST, February 10, 2013

Mike Preston: Nothing will top Ravens' first Super Bowl win, but this one was close

The comparisons are inevitable because there has been only one other Super Bowl winning season in the Ravens' 17-year history in Baltimore.

These Ravens just kept finding a way to win

1:01 AM EST, February 4, 2013

Mike Preston: These Ravens just kept finding a way to win

There are always Cinderella stories in sports, but the Ravens' improbable journey to the Super Bowl XLVII championship is one of the best stories in recent football history.

We've seen this matchup before, and Ravens will win again

9:13 PM EST, February 2, 2013

Mike Preston: We've seen this matchup before, and Ravens will win again

NEW ORLEANS -- The older brother will beat the younger brother again.

Might be time for the Ravens to play the underdog

6:20 PM EST, January 7, 2013

Mike Preston: Might be time for the Ravens to play the underdog

As the Ravens begin preparations for Saturday's AFC divisional playoff game against Denver, the first thing they should do is break out the picture of quarterback Joe Flacco lying face down on the turf at M&T Bank Stadium.

Ravens shouldn't overreact when it's time to pay Flacco

10:42 PM EST, February 25, 2013

Mike Preston: Ravens shouldn't overreact when it's time to pay Flacco

The Ravens are being smart and very cautious in their negotiations with star quarterback Joe Flacco.

Offensive line leads way to New Orleans

12:05 AM EST, January 21, 2013

Mike Preston: Offensive line leads way to New Orleans

When historians look back on the Ravens' 2012 season, they will remember offensive coordinator Cam Cameron being fired and replaced by Jim Caldwell.

Best receiver or not, 49ers' Randy Moss has matured

8:41 PM EST, January 29, 2013

Mike Preston: Best receiver or not, 49ers' Randy Moss has matured

The San Francisco 49ers' Randy Moss said Tuesday that he is the best wide receiver to ever play in the National Football League.

Ravens' offense leads way by making running the ball a priority

8:23 PM EST, January 14, 2013

Mike Preston: Ravens' offense leads way by making running the ball a priority

Despite the lack of a big play in the running game early in the third quarter, the Ravens kept pounding and pounding away at the Denver Broncos' front seven.

With Joe Flacco now 'elite,' Ravens can turn focus to others

8:58 PM EST, March 2, 2013

Mike Preston: With Joe Flacco now 'elite,' Ravens can turn focus to others

Joe Flacco is an elite quarterback now.

Even with Super Bowl win, Flacco will still be same old Joe

10:18 PM EST, February 4, 2013

Mike Preston: Even with Super Bowl win, Flacco will still be same old Joe

Success can change a person, but it probably won't change Joe Flacco.

Anquan Boldin has stepped up big time for Ravens in postseason

7:28 PM EST, February 1, 2013

SUPER BOWL XLVII

Mike Preston: Anquan Boldin has stepped up big time for Ravens in postseason

When Ravens general manager Ozzie Newsome considers whether to bring back veteran wide receiver Anquan Boldin and his $6 million salary for another season, maybe he should rewind the game film of the Ravens' 28-13 win over New England in the AFC championship game two weeks ago.

Biggest questions for Ravens involve 49ers' Pistol offense

9:45 PM EST, January 27, 2013

Mike Preston: Biggest questions for Ravens involve 49ers' Pistol offense

Maybe now that the Super Bowl is less than a week away it's time to get some serious answers about The Game.

Will Ray Lewis dance again at M&T Bank Stadium?

5:05 PM EST, December 20, 2012

Mike Preston: Will Ray Lewis dance again at M&T Bank Stadium?

Will Ray Lewis dance one more time in a Ravens uniform at M&T Bank Stadium?

Mike Preston: Ravens wanted to win more — just ask the Giants

10:27 PM EST, December 23, 2012

Mike Preston: Mike Preston: Ravens wanted to win more — just ask the Giants

When the game was over, the Ravens had showed more heart and desire than the New York Giants.

John Harbaugh has Ravens in right mindset heading into Super Bowl

10:22 PM EST, January 31, 2013

Mike Preston: John Harbaugh has Ravens in right mindset heading into Super Bowl

When John Harbaugh stepped to the podium here Monday night, it seemed to complete his evolution as a head coach.

In their darkest hour, Newsome saw the light

9:32 PM EST, January 24, 2013

Mike Preston: In their darkest hour, Newsome saw the light

When almost everyone else thought the team was coming apart, Ravens general manager Ozzie Newsome thought his team was coming together.

Despite his 'weird season,' Terrell Suggs says Ravens still 'on schedule'

6:53 PM EST, January 3, 2013

Mike Preston: Despite his 'weird season,' Terrell Suggs says Ravens still 'on schedule'

Last month it appeared that Terrell Suggs had gone underground. The injuries to the Ravens Pro Bowl outside linebacker kept mounting, and an altercation with his longtime girlfriend — now his wife — seemed to sour him.

Ravens' coaching staff deserves tons of credit for getting this team to the Super Bowl

10:00 PM EST, January 21, 2013

Mike Preston: Ravens' coaching staff deserves tons of credit for getting this team to the Super Bowl

The Ravens coaching staff might be a victim of the front office's success and its ability to draft or sign good players.

Time has come for Joe Flacco to show what he's worth

4:13 PM EST, January 10, 2013

Mike Preston: Time has come for Joe Flacco to show what he's worth

Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco knows this is the time of the season when NFL legends are made, but also the time when they get paid.

Ravens finally find right combination on offensive line

9:34 PM EST, January 6, 2013

Mike Preston: Ravens finally find right combination on offensive line

It took the Ravens the entire season, but now they have the right players starting on the offensive line.

Preston: Ray Lewis will retire as the greatest middle linebacker to play the game

6:42 PM EST, January 2, 2013

Mike Preston: Preston: Ray Lewis will retire as the greatest middle linebacker to play the game

There is really only one more appropriate ending for the Ravens' Ray Lewis, and that won't come for another five years when he takes his place in the NFL Hall of Fame as the greatest middle linebacker ever.

John Harbaugh faces his toughest coaching challenge yet

9:54 PM EST, December 16, 2012

Mike Preston: John Harbaugh faces his toughest coaching challenge yet

John Harbaugh has gone to the playoffs in each of his first four seasons as head coach, but now is his time for greatness.

Joe Flacco outduels Peyton Manning when it counts

10:17 PM EST, January 12, 2013

Mike Preston: Joe Flacco outduels Peyton Manning when it counts

Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco might have sealed his fame, future and fortune here Saturday night.

This was an embarrassing loss to an ancient QB

10:43 PM EST, December 2, 2012

Mike Preston: This was an embarrassing loss to an ancient QB

The Ravens were fortunate that Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger didn't play Sunday because the score might have been worse.

Caldwell's audition begins; will he pass first test?

6:38 PM EST, December 13, 2012

Mike Preston: Caldwell's audition begins; will he pass first test?

If the next three games are Jim Caldwell's audition to become the Ravens' permanent offensive coordinator, then the odds are stacked against him.

Tough stretch could make or break season for Ravens

5:29 PM EST, December 6, 2012

Mike Preston: Tough stretch could make or break season for Ravens

One game does not define a team, but the next four will.

The Ravens are one tough bunch

7:32 PM EST, November 29, 2012

Mike Preston: The Ravens are one tough bunch

The Ravens have been lucky, received divine intervention and may be one of the worst 9-2 teams in NFL history, but the one characteristic that stands out about this team is toughness.

Jim Caldwell breathed some confidence into Ravens offense

4:34 PM EST, December 24, 2012

Mike Preston: Jim Caldwell breathed some confidence into Ravens offense

Two weeks after he was named offensive coordinator, Jim Caldwell has finally put his finger prints on the game plan.

One more game before new season begins for the Ravens

9:58 PM EST, December 27, 2012

Mike Preston: One more game before new season begins for the Ravens

The Ravens' regular-season finale Sunday against the Cincinnati Bengals is like the final preseason game — it's just one more test before the new season begins.

Troubling trend for the Ravens? Not calling on Ray Rice

6:41 PM EST, December 3, 2012

Mike Preston: Troubling trend for the Ravens? Not calling on Ray Rice

Ravens head coach John Harbaugh was trying not to point any fingers when he was asked about the lack of touches for running back Ray Rice in the Ravens 23-20 loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers.

The key to beating the Colts ... run the ball

5:02 PM EST, December 31, 2012

Mike Preston: The key to beating the Colts ... run the ball

When Ravens fullback Vonta Leach was able to walk off the field Sunday after suffering an ankle injury minutes earlier, the offensive coaching staff breathed a collective sigh of relief.

There are plenty of unanswered questions facing the Ravens

9:26 PM EST, December 17, 2012

Mike Preston: There are plenty of unanswered questions facing the Ravens

The Ravens seemed confident after getting blown out by the Denver Broncos on Sunday, but you have to wonder if it was just for public consumption or if it wasreal.

Little by little, Ravens defense making strides

6:20 PM EST, November 22, 2012

Mike Preston: Little by little, Ravens defense making strides

The Ravens coaching staff has been ecstatic with their winning record, but never happy with the overall performance, especially on defense.

Ravens secondary still an area of concern

8:42 AM EST, November 13, 2012

Mike Preston: Ravens secondary still an area of concern

Buried in the leftover rubble and next to the carcass of the Oakland Raiders at M&T Bank Stadium is a concern that won't go away.

Might have been nice to see the Ravens offense one more time

8:20 PM EST, December 30, 2012

Mike Preston: Might have been nice to see the Ravens offense one more time

— As the Ravens head into the postseason, one question remains unanswered from the preseason and regular season. There is still doubt about whether this offense can carry the Ravens.

Ravens look like a team headed in the wrong direction

9:12 PM EST, December 9, 2012

Mike Preston: Ravens look like a team headed in the wrong direction

— A week ago, the Ravens got beat by an old quarterback. On Sunday, they got beat by two rookie quarterbacks, one playing on one leg and the other having thrown only nine passes in his NFL career.

Ravens giving everyone reason to believe

10:30 PM EST, November 25, 2012

Mike Preston: Ravens giving everyone reason to believe

When the game ended, Ravens offensive linemen Michael Oher and Jah Reid were chest bumping. Quarterback Joe Flacco was walking around with a clenched fist and Coach John Harbaugh was hugging anyone, almost everyone on the field.

Ravens have to find right time, balance for Flacco contract extension

7:57 PM EST, November 19, 2012

Mike Preston: Ravens have to find right time, balance for Flacco contract extension

The Ravens are six games away from completing the 2012 regular season, and they are approaching the time when a team might consider signing its franchise quarterback to a contract extension.

Ravens aren't pretty, but they find ways to win

12:32 AM EST, November 19, 2012

Mike Preston: Ravens aren't pretty, but they find ways to win

If you're waiting for the Ravens to become a super team in their quest to win another Super Bowl, it's probably not going to happen.

Preston's matchups: Ravens vs. Steelers

4:37 PM EST, November 16, 2012

Preston's matchups: Ravens vs. Steelers

Steelers WR Mike Wallace vs Ravens CBs Cary Williams and Corey Graham: Wallace might be the fastest wide receiver in the NFL. If quarterback Ben Roethlisberger was playing, the Ravens would be in serious trouble. They still could get burned a lot with Byron Leftwich replacing Roethlisberger. Williams has improved in recent weeks and Graham is more physcial than former starter Jimmy Smith. The Ravens have to neutralize Pittsburgh's speed. Edge: Steeleers.

There isn't much that is pretty about the AFC North

8:32 PM EST, November 4, 2012

Mike Preston: There isn't much that is pretty about the AFC North

— Ravens coach John Harbaugh was trying to pay both team compliments when he said Sunday's game between the Ravens and the Cleveland Browns was just another typical AFC North game.

All attention should turn to Flacco on Sunday vs. Steelers

6:19 PM EST, November 15, 2012

Mike Preston: All attention should turn to Flacco on Sunday vs. Steelers

There needs to be more interest in the quarterback who is playing this week than the one who isn't.

Ravens need to know when to say when with the passing game

6:18 PM EDT, October 22, 2012

Mike Preston: Ravens need to know when to say when with the passing game

As the Ravens' coaching staff huddles during the bye week to determine new strategies, hopefully they will come up with a time to unplug quarterback Joe Flacco and the passing offense.

Ravens beat the Raiders like it was a homecoming game

9:00 PM EST, November 11, 2012

Mike Preston: Ravens beat the Raiders like it was a homecoming game

A week ago, Ravens coach John Harbaugh said there were no easy or homecoming games in the National Football League.

Getting Haloti Ngata healthy is No. 1 priority for Ravens

5:18 PM EDT, October 29, 2012

Mike Preston: Getting Haloti Ngata healthy is No. 1 priority for Ravens

The most important thing for the Ravens as they prepare for the Cleveland Browns on Sunday is to get Pro Bowl defensive tackle Haloti Ngata healthy.

After Raiders' game, real tests begin for Ravens

3:27 PM EST, November 8, 2012

Mike Preston: After Raiders' game, real tests begin for Ravens

After the Ravens play the Oakland Raiders Sunday, the real fun begins. That's when the Ravens will show if they are a quality team or a fraudulent one

Ravens are at a crossroads

6:38 PM EDT, November 1, 2012

Mike Preston: Ravens are at a crossroads

The Ravens are at the crossroads.

Bye comes at the right time for struggling Ravens

8:46 PM EDT, October 21, 2012

Mike Preston: Bye comes at the right time for struggling Ravens

— Few teams are happy to go into the bye week with a loss, but this might work in the Ravens' favor.

For at least one more week, Ravens should keep the ball in Rice's hands

6:53 PM EST, November 5, 2012

Mike Preston: For at least one more week, Ravens should keep the ball in Rice's hands

The temptation might be great, but the Ravens have to resist.

Ravens' defense is sickening, just ask their coordinator

7:51 PM EDT, October 18, 2012

Mike Preston: Ravens' defense is sickening, just ask their coordinator

It is a campaign season, but Dean Pees wasn't in the mood for ducking any questions about his defense, one of the worst in the NFL.

Someone is watching over the Ravens

9:21 PM EDT, October 14, 2012

Mike Preston: Someone is watching over the Ravens

The Dallas Cowboys may be America's Team, but the Ravens have the football gods on their side.

Ray Lewis will end his career his way

8:34 PM EDT, October 15, 2012

Mike Preston: Ray Lewis will end his career his way

Pro Bowl inside linebacker Ray Lewis did not make it through his 17th season, but he will play in No. 18 next year.

Ravens outside linebackers continue to improve

7:17 PM EDT, September 28, 2012

Mike Preston: Ravens outside linebackers continue to improve

Buried under the Ravens allowing 357 yards of total offense to the Cleveland Browns, including 320 yards passing by rookie quarterback Brandon Weeden, was a bright spot.

Ravens' O-line faces another test vs. Cowboys LBs

5:16 PM EDT, October 11, 2012

Mike Preston: Ravens' O-line faces another test vs. Cowboys LBs

Ravens offensive tackles Michael Oher and Kelechi Osemele thought they had it tough last week.

In September, even an ugly win is a win

12:33 AM EDT, September 28, 2012

Mike Preston: In September, even an ugly win is a win

OK, it wasn't pretty, but it was effective.

Just remember, the Ravens secondary could be worse

7:19 PM EDT, September 24, 2012

Mike Preston: Just remember, the Ravens secondary could be worse

Bring back Frank Walker.

Ray Rice remains the one constant with the Ravens' offense

7:04 PM EDT, October 8, 2012

Mike Preston: Ray Rice remains the one constant with the Ravens' offense

Regardless of what has been displayed on the field by the Ravens during the first five games, this is still running back Ray Rice's offense.

For a change, Ravens have more questions on defense

4:14 PM EDT, September 13, 2012

Mike Preston: For a change, Ravens have more questions on defense

It's early in the season, and usually there are questions about the offense, but my how times have changed.

Dannell Ellerbe finds his place with the Ravens' defense

6:03 PM EDT, October 4, 2012

Mike Preston: Dannell Ellerbe finds his place with the Ravens' defense

Ravens inside linebacker Dannell Ellerbe laughed when he heard the question. Then he smiled. And then he smiled some more.

Rookie kicker Justin Tucker keeps a cool approach

4:54 PM EDT, September 20, 2012

Mike Preston: Rookie kicker Justin Tucker keeps a cool approach

Justin Tucker has eased most of the concerns about former Ravens placekicker Billy Cundiff.

The Ravens have discovered an offense

10:48 PM EDT, September 10, 2012

Mike Preston: The Ravens have discovered an offense

The Ravens have an offense.

Art Modell's spirit lives on in Ravens as an organization

7:39 PM EDT, September 7, 2012

Mike Preston: Art Modell's spirit lives on in Ravens as an organization

All the strong qualities that Art Modell brought to the Baltimore Ravens have surfaced.

The no-huddle could be a no-brainer for this offense

12:10 AM EDT, September 9, 2012

Mike Preston: The no-huddle could be a no-brainer for this offense

One way or another, 2012 is a coming-out season for Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco.

9:45 PM EDT, May 12, 2012

Stevenson advances with win against Gettysburg in Division III playoffs

Stevenson has had a tradition of turning out high-powered offenses, but it has been the defense that has carried the Mustangs this season .

Preston: Maryland championship team understood teamwork

5:14 PM EDT, March 31, 2012

Mike Preston: Preston: Maryland championship team understood teamwork

When the Maryland men's basketball team won its national championship 10 years ago, it was uniquely different than a lot of those won during that era.

Kelechi Osemele should start for Ravens at left guard

7:55 PM EDT, September 3, 2012

Mike Preston: Kelechi Osemele should start for Ravens at left guard

Ravens rookie offensive lineman Kelechi Osemele says the coaching staff has told him he would play a very substantial role this season.

Ravens need young defensive players to contribute

8:15 PM EDT, August 27, 2012

Mike Preston: Ravens need young defensive players to contribute

Since the 2000 Super Bowl season, the Ravens have set a standard for greatness on defense. The torch has been passed on from a Rod Woodson and Peter Boulware to a Haloti Ngata and Ed Reed.

Scoring spurts help Johns Hopkins beat Army, 13-6

6:01 PM EDT, May 5, 2012

Scoring spurts help Johns Hopkins beat Army, 13-6

The situation facing No. 8 Johns Hopkins on Saturday afternoon felt a little familiar to the Blue Jays. Army displayed a few techniques in hopes of obtaining the same result as Navy did against Hopkins a few weeks ago.

No. 1 Johns Hopkins falls to No. 10 North Carolina, 13-9

11:59 PM EDT, April 1, 2012

No. 1 Johns Hopkins falls to No. 10 North Carolina, 13-9

No. 10 North Carolina scored four goals in the first 10 minutes of the fourth quarter as the Tar Heels upset the No. 1 Johns Hopkins men's lacrosse team, 13-9, on Sunday night in the Big City Classic in East Rutherford, N.J.

No. 7 Maryland starts strong in 10-7 win over No. 10 Duke

5:34 PM EST, March 3, 2012

No. 7 Maryland starts strong in 10-7 win over No. 10 Duke

COLLEGE PARK — The Maryland men's lacrosse team wanted to play the perfect game Saturday, but the Terps had to settle for a great start and a strong finish.

Ravens should point fingers at themselves, not officials, for loss to Eagles

5:18 PM EDT, September 17, 2012

Mike Preston: Ravens should point fingers at themselves, not officials, for loss to Eagles

Nearly two weeks into the preseason, Ravens Pro Bowl outside linebacker Terrell Suggs said the replacement referees would have little impact on the outcome of games if the Ravens performed well.

Loyola vs. Notre Dame will be ultimate offense vs. defense showdown

2:19 PM EDT, May 25, 2012

Loyola vs. Notre Dame will be ultimate offense vs. defense showdown

Loyola attackmen Eric Lusby and Mike Sawyer have seen a lot of different zones and man-to-man defensive combinations this season.

Different season, same story with Ravens' confusing play-calling

7:43 PM EDT, September 16, 2012

Mike Preston: Different season, same story with Ravens' confusing play-calling

— Here they go again.

If preseason is any indication, Joe Flacco will be Ravens' biggest weapon

11:04 PM EDT, August 23, 2012

Mike Preston: If preseason is any indication, Joe Flacco will be Ravens' biggest weapon

Unless quarterback Joe Flacco plays next week against St. Louis, he just completed the best preseason of his five-year NFL career.

10:49 PM EDT, April 1, 2012

UNC hands Hopkins its first loss, 13-9

No. 10 North Carolina scored four goals in the first 10 minutes of the fourth quarter as the Tar Heels upset the No. 1 Johns Hopkins men's lacrosse team, 13-9, on Sunday night in the Big City Classic in East Rutherford, N.J.

5:44 PM EST, March 10, 2012

Loyola eases doubts with big win over Duke

No one knows for sure if Loyola University belongs in the top echelon of lacrosse teams this season, but it will be fun to see if the Greyhounds can get there.

8:57 PM EDT, April 20, 2012

Top-seeded Duke edges Maryland, 6-5, in ACC semifinals

CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. — It's April, so it is time for Duke's men's lacrosse team to start its annual march toward the NCAA championship.

It's time for Harbaugh to make difficult changes with Ray Lewis and Ed Reed

10:05 PM EST, January 2, 2012

Mike Preston: It's time for Harbaugh to make difficult changes with Ray Lewis and Ed Reed

Ravens head coach John Harbaugh is trying to walk the line without falling off the edge — and possibly taking down his team, as well.

Mike Preston's Ravens report card

6:44 PM EST, November 21, 2010

Mike Preston's Ravens report card

Quarterback: It was a typical performance by Joe Flacco, except he played well in the first half and was average in the second. Flacco had some nice sideline throws, but he has to develop a better feel in the pocket of when to go down, and when to tuck the ball. But he did throw for more than 300 yards. Grade: B

Improved offense hinges on consistent offensive line play for Ravens

9:59 PM EST, November 28, 2011

Improved offense hinges on consistent offensive line play for Ravens

The Ravens appear to have found the right formula for winning on offense, but it has as much to do with the improved play of the offensive line as it does with a change in philosophy.

Loyola dominant in 13-6 men's lacrosse victory over Towson

6:56 PM EST, February 25, 2012

Loyola dominant in 13-6 men's lacrosse victory over Towson

The No. 17 Loyola men's lacrosse team's offense was so lethal against rival Towson on Saturday that Greyhounds coach Charley Toomey really didn't want to talk about it.

Bernard Pierce making a case to be Ravens' No. 2 running back

8:23 PM EDT, August 20, 2012

Mike Preston: Bernard Pierce making a case to be Ravens' No. 2 running back

Ravens rookie running back Bernard Pierce may have had the most impressive one-yard rushing performance in NFL history.

Rookie Courtney Upshaw has yet to impress, but there is time for him to improve

5:44 PM EDT, August 31, 2012

Mike Preston: Rookie Courtney Upshaw has yet to impress, but there is time for him to improve

Rookie outside linebacker Courtney Upshaw has struggled with weight and shoulder problems, but he still should be more impressive than what he has shown in the preseason.

Johns Hopkins cruises to 19-9 win over Stony Brook

8:22 PM EDT, May 13, 2012

Johns Hopkins cruises to 19-9 win over Stony Brook

Mike Poppleton didn't score a goal, dish out an assist or register a save, but he clearly was the most dominant player on the field in Johns Hopkins' 19-9 win over Stony Brook on Sunday in an NCAA tournament opening-round game.

10:32 PM EDT, April 14, 2012

Salisbury scores three straight goals to beat Stevenson, 11-10

The major difference between Division III powers Salisbury and Stevenson is that the Sea Gulls know how to finish and win big games.

Maryland breezes by Villanova in men's lacrosse

4:41 PM EDT, March 17, 2012

Maryland breezes by Villanova in men's lacrosse

Maryland's lacrosse game against Villanova lasted nearly two hours, but it took about 15 minutes to determine the winner.

Ravens offense should still be focused on the run

8:54 PM EDT, September 26, 2011

Ravens offense should still be focused on the run

Just a few minutes had passed after the Ravens' rout of St. Louis, and Joe Flacco had taken his place at the podium. It was entertaining because Flacco was actually excited about the Ravens' passing game, and we all know that the quarterback isn't exactly Mr. Excitement.

Ravens' Foxworth ready for return to action

6:24 PM EDT, July 26, 2011

Ravens' Foxworth ready for return to action

After helping the NFL and its players lift the lockout and craft a new collective bargaining agreement, Domonique Foxworth is ready to get back on the field. The Ravens cornerback, who missed last season with a knee injury, said Tuesday that he has no desire to begin training camp on the team's physically-unable-to-perform (PUP) list.

Loyola beats Notre Dame to advance to NCAA men's lacrosse final

8:46 PM EDT, May 26, 2012

Loyola beats Notre Dame to advance to NCAA men's lacrosse final

When the final horn sounded, Loyola players ran toward their big goalie, Jack Runkel, who stood to the left of the goal with both arms outstretched over his head.

Navy speeds away with 10-6 win against Towson

10:16 PM EDT, March 13, 2012

Navy speeds away with 10-6 win against Towson

The Naval Academy broke open a tightly contested game with five straight goals to open the third quarter as the visiting Middies defeated Towson, 10-6, in mens' college lacrosse Tuesday night.

5:06 PM EST, November 28, 2011

Improved offense hinges on consistent offensive line play for Ravens

The Ravens appear to have found the right formula for winning on offense, but it has as much to do with the improved play of the offensive line as it does a change in philosophy.

6:49 PM EDT, April 16, 2011

Navy men's playoff hopes dashed with 14-9 loss to Army

— In the end, Navy head coach Richie Meade had to face reality, because there isn't a lot left for his lacrosse team.

Mike Preston's report card: Steelers 13, Ravens 10

1:14 AM EST, December 6, 2010

Mike Preston's report card: Steelers 13, Ravens 10

Quarterback

9:43 PM EDT, May 18, 2011

Stevenson men upset by Roanoke in Division III quarterfinals, 13-12

There will be no Stevenson versus Salisbury III.

Ravens turn focus to Mason after missing out on Floyd

8:07 PM EDT, August 5, 2011

Ravens turn focus to Mason after missing out on Floyd

After failing to sign Malcom Floyd in free agency, the Ravens presumably will turn their focus at wide receiver to &nbspDerrick Mason.

Baltimore Sun columnist Mike Preston's Ravens-Saints report card

7:53 PM EST, December 19, 2010

Baltimore Sun columnist Mike Preston's Ravens-Saints report card

Quarterback

Mike Preston's report card: Ravens vs. Buccaneers

10:14 PM EST, November 28, 2010

Mike Preston's report card: Ravens vs. Buccaneers

Quarterback

Ravens report card: Ravens vs. Bengals

7:37 PM EDT, September 19, 2010

Mike Preston: Ravens report card: Ravens vs. Bengals

Quarterback

Mike Preston's final Ravens report card

5:24 PM EST, January 24, 2011

Mike Preston's final Ravens report card

During the season Ravens columnist Mike Preston graded the Ravens' progress after each game. Today, Preston offers his final grades for the season by position, including the coaching staff.

Mike Preston's report card: Ravens vs. Steelers

10:15 PM EST, January 15, 2011

Mike Preston's report card: Ravens vs. Steelers

Quarterback

2:10 PM EDT, September 24, 2011

Mike Preston's Ravens-Rams matchups to watch

Ravens S Ed Reed vs. Rams QB Sam Bradford

Mike Preston's Ravens-Chiefs report card

7:23 PM EST, January 9, 2011

Mike Preston's Ravens-Chiefs report card

Quarterback: Joe Flacco may have played his best game, certainly in the postseason. He carried the offense when there was no running game in the first half. He kept drives alive with his scrambling ability. He looked off his primary receivers and came back to them. Grade: A.

Mike Preston's report card: Ravens 13, Bengals 7

7:47 PM EST, January 2, 2011

Mike Preston's report card: Ravens 13, Bengals 7

Quarterback: The Bengals have a way of making Joe Flacco think and throw in slow motion. Flacco seemed late on a lot of his passes, and didn't play well under duress. When pressured, he doesn't secure the ball well, which could become a problem again. Grade: D+

Mike Preston's report card: Titans 26, Ravens 13

8:30 PM EDT, September 18, 2011

Mike Preston's report card: Titans 26, Ravens 13

Quarterback: This was one of Joe Flacco's worst days as a pro. His passes in the flat had no zip, and he even had trouble completing swing passes. He held onto the ball too long at times, and never had any timing with his receivers. Flacco, who threw two interceptions, finished with a quarterback rating of 51.2. Grade: F

Gregg has 'nothing to say but great things about the Ravens'

4:31 PM EDT, July 31, 2011

Gregg has 'nothing to say but great things about the Ravens'

Kelly Gregg, the second-leading tackler in Ravens history, said there are no hard feelings in parting ways with the team.

Mike Preston's Ravens-Broncos report card

9:11 PM EDT, October 10, 2010

Mike Preston's Ravens-Broncos report card

Quarterback

Playoff win so memorable I wanted to play for Billick

12:45 PM EDT, October 21, 2010

Mike Preston: Playoff win so memorable I wanted to play for Billick

It's impossible to go through the 2000 Super Bowl season without remembering the Ravens' divisional playoff win over the Tennessee Titans in Nashville.

6:58 PM EST, December 13, 2009

Ravens-Lions: Mike Preston's report card

Quarterback: A-

Mike Preston's report card: Patriots 23, Ravens 20, OT

8:54 PM EDT, October 17, 2010

Mike Preston's report card: Patriots 23, Ravens 20, OT

Quarterback: B-

5:35 PM EDT, May 7, 2011

Salisbury roars to 17-3 rout of Washington in War on the Shore

— The War on the Shore lasted about 15 minutes.

Ravens report card: Ravens 17, Steelers 14

10:50 AM EDT, October 4, 2010

Ravens report card: Ravens 17, Steelers 14

Quarterback: B+

Mike Preston's Ravens-Browns report card

6:50 PM EST, December 26, 2010

Mike Preston's Ravens-Browns report card

Quarterback

Mike Preston's report card: Ravens vs. Texans

12:23 AM EST, December 14, 2010

Mike Preston's report card: Ravens vs. Texans

Quarterbacks

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