A Baltimore Ravens Backdrop
As a regular viewer of the ESPN show “NFL Live”, I’ve noticed Trey Wingo and the gang are now resorted to talk about Tweets and sandwiches for 30 minutes. They would probably get the same amount of viewers if they had Tommy Z beat up a Roethlisberger punching bag for an hour (Not a bad idea….), or Photoshop uniforms on big-name free agents such as Plaxico Burress or Donovan McNabb like the NBA did with Dwight Howard. Since everyone is scraping the bottom of the football information well, I guess I could tell you a secret. Can I trust you?
If you promise not the tell anyone, I’ll tell you. Promise? Well, as you can tell I am a Raven’s fan. A mammoth one. Even though, sadly, I am not from Baltimore. I’m not even from Maryland. I am from the great state of Tennessee, yes the same one famous for Miley Cyrus, Dolly Parton, and Elvis Presley (We need more of a talent pool, I know). I actually have only visited Baltimore once during a vacation, though my soul dies a little each day I’m not in view of the Inner Harbor. After I visited the Charm City, everyone at my school had started to get into football. Ironiclly, most of my family were Oilers fans growing up. As a kid, I played Oilers cups and saw Warren Moon (still my favorite quarterback) and the now-Raven, Derrick Mason on Sundays. When the franchise moved to Tennessee in 1999 and changed the name to the Titans, my family lost interest, as did I. Around where I live, “fandom” is split three ways. Either you like the Titians, like the Dallas Cowboys because Jason Witten is from a town over, or the Colts because Peyton Manning went to the University of Tennessee. There’s a few Steelers fans, Redskins fans, and others sprinkled in every now and then. I started to like the Colts because of Peyton Manning, but it got to get very “bandwagony”. One day, I was watching SportsCenter and glanced up to see a purple #20 jersey blazing down a sideline, covering the receiver like a blanket. Suddenly he stroke, picking the football out of the air, planting his feet and running it from one painted endzone to the other. I honestly was stunned to the point to where I couldn’t speak. It was the greatest display of athleticism I had ever seen and probably will ever see again. Immediately, I began searching for Ravens jerseys for a REED 20. That highlight of Mr. Ed Reed is one of the biggest catalyst to me becoming a Ravens fan (And eventually a sportswriter). I then found on the web the first season of Hard Knocks, covering Jamal Lewis getting hurt, searching for the next starting quarterback, and the introduction of Todd Heap, the first round pick of the Ravens in 2001, as he learns from veterans such as Shannon Sharpe, Ray Lewis, and Tony Siragusa, all while being the reining Superbowl champions (The best series on television ever, in my opinion). After that, I was sold out and began to bleed purple and black. I maybe asked who Todd Heap is, explain that Micheal Oher isn’t just the “feel good story of the year”, but an amazing tackle of the professional level, and why defensive linemen get the nickname “Goose”, but I love being a raven. Every single day. Display your Ravens pride on here and also be sure to follow both Ebony Bird and me on Twitter. Take it easy, Raven Nation.