Ray Rice Drawing Interest From Other Teams, QB Power Rankings


Aug 7, 2014; Baltimore, MD, USA; Baltimore Ravens running back Ray Rice (27) high fives fans after beating the San Francisco 49ers 23-3 at M&T Bank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Evan Habeeb-USA TODAY Sports

Welcome to Lunchtime Links, where we round up all the latest Ravens news from around the web for your convenient consumption.  Today we bring you the latest on the Ray Rice appeal and why he might be drawing interest from other teams, the latest quarterback rankings, and why Steve Smith is a perfect fit in the AFC North.

Ray Rice drawing interest from other teams?

As expected, the NFLPA has filed an appeal on behalf of Ray Rice in regards to his indefinite suspension.  This was fully expected, as the Player’s Association wants to ensure that players aren’t subjected to double jeopardy going forward.  One important caveat is that Rice will not be eligible to play while his appeal is being heard, though often this is the case with players.

But the reality that Rice could see a reduction in the length of his suspension is very real. If that is the case, would a team be interested in his services? I personally have a hard time believing it, but Bleacher Report is reporting that at least one team has explored the idea.

I just have a hard time believing that a team would take on the PR disaster that awaits them by showing interest in Rice. With his best playing days behind him, it just seems like a risk that isn’t worth taking. But as we have seen with players such as Micheal Vick and Donte Stallworth, time tends to make people forget about player transgressions.

Steve Smith a perfect fit for AFC North

The AFC North is a rugged division known for its tough players and physical teams.  This means that it is a perfect fit for one Steve Smith, as Jamison Hensley at ESPN points out.  And even Smith reportedly told John Harbaugh that he was “born for AFC North football” during the course of last week’s win over the Steelers.

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Smith has a reputation for fighting for the ball and extra yardage on every play.  He is a hard nosed player who seemingly has no fear over the middle of the field, even fighting through a facemask penalty once this year to pick up some extra yards.  Not only that, but he currently leads the NFL in broken tackles with 10, which is more than double the next guy, Golden Tate.

NFL quarterback power rankings

Bleacher Report has updated their quarterback power rankings following week two, and Joe Flacco has predictably made a move up the charts.  But he’s still a bit low at number 20, behind many question marks at the position.  Flacco was put in a tough spot in week one when he was asked to throw 62 times, but a more balanced attack in week two helped him tremendously.

As we pointed out this very morning, week two’s performance was a bit of a revelation for Joe Flacco.  He completed an impressive 72.4% of his passes and showed the ability to make quick decisions and move through his progressions seamlessly. This is a great sign for his prospects going forward, and proves that he can be a great fit for Gary Kubiak’s offense.