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  1. WC Semi Final #2 - Croatia vs England

    I think this World Cup has been more 'interesting' in the sense that it's been far more wide open, but in terms of the actual quality of football it's been quite poor. Just seems like it's been an entire tournament of set piece goals. International football is always a bit of a mixed bag but there hasn't been a team in this tournament that has captivated me as a neutral in the way that a team like the 2014 Colombia side did, for example.
  2. WC Semi Final #2 - Croatia vs England

    It's sort of besides the point because they ended up winning but some of Croatia's game management after taking the lead was just absolutely atrocious. Kramaric selfishly taking a shot into the side netting rather than squaring the ball to a wide open Perisic for what would have been the game-sealing goal, Brozovic blasting a shot from 35 yards off of a corner when they could have passed the ball around and taken some more time off the clock, and then that last chance around the 120th minute when the Croatian player could have dribbled the ball into the corner and more or less wrapped the game up but launched a hopeless cross in instead... England ended up with one final set piece chance there at the end (which, relatedly, I'm confused why Pickford didn't come up for that) that they never would have gotten if Croatia had played a little smarter. Obviously didn't cost them but it's the sort of thing that can really come back to bite you if you don't kick those habits.
  3. WC Semi Final #2 - Croatia vs England

    That Kane chance is gonna go down in history. England were absolutely all over them to start and I don't see a way back for Croatia if they go down 2-0 there.
  4. Training Camp 2018 discussion

    Agree to disagree with the rest, because all I've seen for years from our fanbase is people making excuses and lowering expectations for Flacco at every turn in order to make it seem like we have no right to turn up the heat on one of the highest paid QB's in the league... but just want to isolate this here. I'm glad we're putting this line in the sand now about Flacco having a "strong group of pass catchers" to work with now because I promise you we'll be hearing about how terrible his weapons are come October or November if he's giving us his typical Flacco output. And just for the record, I'm not advocating for Lamar to start Week 1 or anything like that.
  5. Training Camp 2018 discussion

    I was there during the days of Banks, the GOAT Dilfer, Grbac, Boller, Anthony Wright, etc... and I'm gonna go with @Darth Pees on this. The flipside of "you don't get that Flacco broke the wheel of mediocre QB's" is that people are now touting "well look, Flacco is better than Anthony Wright and Kyle Boller" as if that's actually an impressive achievement. Everyone's so scared of going back to Kyle "I can throw a football through the uprights on one knee from the 50 yard line which is a real thing you do in games" Boller that they'll talk themselves into pretending anything Flacco does is great. No one is blind to what Flacco and the Ravens achieved between 2008 and 2012. What a lot of people who still go to the mat for Flacco are blind to is that we haven't achieved anything in 5 years, and Flacco's play is a big part of it. If people want to sit here and say that saying Lamar Jackson could be good is just wishcasting, fine - "we don't know if he'll be good" is certainly a reasonable POV to take. But let's not pretend that basically every defense of Flacco isn't some form of the same wishcasting - "he needs better weapons! He's held back by an offensive system! He's just recovering from injury!" We have years worth of data that points to Flacco being mediocre now. And what's more... the organization clearly sees this. Lamar Jackson isn't a Raven right now if the organization that knows everything there is to know about him as a player and person did not feel like they were watching a player in decline. The Atlanta Falcons did not just draft Matt Ryan's heir. But we drafted Flacco's. Because he's not very good! And we're way past "he's better than Anthony Wright" as a valid defense.
  6. Transfers & Rumors: Deadline Drama!

    Feel bad for Ronaldo, having his big move overshadowed by the transfer of the summer, Lucas Torreira to Arsenal.
  7. Transfers & Rumors: Deadline Drama!

    Crazy. I always assumed when Ronaldo left Madrid he'd be making a pitstop at United or PSG, this just feels... odd. Madrid haven't really spent big in a couple of summers now and you'd have to imagine Flo will want to make some huge signings in order to soften the blow of losing Ronaldo. I would think Mbappe, Kane, and Neymar are at the top of their wishlist and I think all three of them are attainable next summer but this summer I don't really see it. I think Hazard this summer seems a bit more likely though.
  8. 2018 FIFA World Cup Group G & Group H

    Am I the only one a little surprised that neither team is going for the win here? Yeah, 2nd place puts you on the easier half of the draw, but there's also a massive difference in quality between Colombia and Japan. There's a very decent chance that 1st place in this group reaches the quarters while 2nd place doesn't. And it seems pretty likely that Spain will make the semis on that side of the bracket. So really all you're doing is giving up an easier Round of 16 matchup in exchange for an easier quarterfinal game, except there's no guarantee you'll make the quarters because you're going up against a really good team in the Round of 16 now.
  9. 2018 FIFA World Cup Group E & Group F

  10. Transfers & Rumors: Deadline Drama!

    I think he'd be a really useful rotation/depth option for any top 6 side.
  11. 2018 FIFA World Cup Group E & Group F

    Man outside of Marquez this Mexico team is annoyingly likeable. Lozano is such a treat.
  12. Random Raven Remembrances "RRR"

    Yep. If Joe doesn't make that throw there, then we give the ball back to Denver at about midfield and put them about one first down away from winning the game. The other play that doesn't get talked about enough from that game is this one: After the Graham INT, we were one 1st down away from getting in FG range for Tucker - and we got it on a 2nd down draw play for Ray Rice. If Marshal Yanda ever gets elected to the Hall of Fame, I hope this play is a part of his highlight reel - the way he comes into that play at the end and singlehandedly pushes Rice over the 1st down marker is amazing. Without that push, we're looking at a 3rd and short there - which, if we don't convert, puts us in a position where Harbaugh has to send the rookie Tucker out there for a ~55 yard field goal. Still makeable for him but that's a MUCH tougher kick for him, I think probably around what his career long make was at that point in his career. Instead, Yanda pushes the pile forward, we get the 1st down, pick up an extra 5 yards from there and give Tucker a more makeable 48 yard FG... and well, we know what happens from there.
  13. Random Raven Remembrances "RRR"

    Lol remember when 'Anthony Wright vs. Kyle Boller' became a QB controversy we all had to worry about.
  14. Arsenal, Pt. X: Boom-Xhaka-Laca!

    Lichsteiner on a free is official. Assuming it's a short-term contract and assuming we keep Bellerin and he's coming in as 2nd choice, I like the signing a lot.
  15. Random Ravens Thoughts: New Forum Edition

    Wouldn't be surprised if he's the latest of many local beat guys to move over to The Athletic. Hoping that's the case so that he continues to cover the Ravens.