It's epic, mythic, cosmic and exhilarating -- and the Baltimore Ravens get the full NFL Films treatment in "Baltimore Ravens: Super Bowl XLVII Champions," which goes on sale Tuesday. A purple carpet premiere was held Monday night at the Modell Performing Arts Center at the Lyric.
That development dropped the exclusive franchise tag to $19.136 million, the average of the top five quarterback salary-cap numbers. That figure is derived from Detroit Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford's $20.82 million salary-cap number ($12.5 million base salary) as well as New York Giants quarterback Eli Manning's $20.35 million ($13 million base salary), Denver Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning's $20 million ($20 million base salary), New Orleans Saints quarterback Drew Brees' $17.4 million ($9.75 million base salary) and San Diego Chargers quarterback Philip Rivers' $17.11 million ($12 million base salary).
The Baltimore Ravens' opponent Sunday, the San Francisco 49ers, is known for a brick wall of a defensive of front that helped the 49ers rank second in points allowed and third in total defense during the regular season. And when it comes to stopping the run, 49ers inside linebackers Patrick Willis and NaVorro Bowman are often immovable objects, blocking running backs like Rice from escaping into the open field.
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.
Seventeen years of experience was on display Sunday during Lewis' emotionally-charged final game at M&T Bank Stadium. Lewis recorded a game-high 13 tackles in a 24-9 AFC wild-card victory over the Indianapolis Colts and will join his teammates in Denver for Saturday's divisional game against the Broncos.
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.