Every morning, Monday through Friday, blogger Matt Vensel will hook you up with reading material -- mostly on the Ravens but with some other Baltimore sports stuff, too -- to skim through as you slug down coffee and slack off at the start of your workday. That way he'll have an excuse to do the same to start his workday, too.
RUNNING IT BACK
With the Dallas Cowboys coming to town this weekend, the Ravens are trying to solve their problems against press coverage. … His performance against the Kansas City Chiefs was a good start for linebacker Paul Kruger. … Offensive tackle Bryant McKinnie will likely start later rather than sooner. … Defensive tackle Haloti Ngata was limited at Wednesday's practice. … Kevin Cowherd admitted he was wrong about Billy Cundiff.
RAVENS STUFF, BUT NOT FROM US
The Ravens have the NFL's best home-field advantage. … Here is why the Ravens run defense "stinks," according to Pete Prisco. … A writer who covers the Cowboys says that Ray Lewis is a special player. … Rookie kicker Justin Tucker is getting his kicks in the NFL. … The Ravens are entering a tough two-game stretch. … Two high-profile Ravens games will not be played in primetime.
BEHIND ENEMY LINES
Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo apparently did not hang up on a conference call with Baltimore reporters. … Leadership isn't an issue for the Cowboys. … The Cowboys are still searching for daylight in the running game, and they will have opportunities to run the ball against the struggling Ravens run defense. … Former Ravens coach Brian Billick says that Cowboys owner and general manager Jerry Jones has taken on too much responsibility.
SHAMELESS PLUG OF THE DAY
In this week's edition of "Five Ravens stats that stand out," I looked at where Ray Rice likes to run, Paul Kruger's recent play, and the offense's struggles early in games under John Harbaugh.
AWAY FROM THE GRIDIRON
Pinch hitter Raul Ibanez hit two home runs, including the walk-off winner, as the New York Yankees stunned the Orioles in extra innings Wednesday night. … Alex Rodriguez, who was replaced by Ibanez in the lineup, was giddy afterward. … Rookie shortstop Manny Machado made history with his solo shot. … Yankees shortstop Derek Jeter left the game due to a bruised foot. … Joe Saunders will start Game 4 for the Orioles over Chris Tillman.