Baltimore Ravens wide receiver Brandon Stokley apparently has decided to end his career where it started.
Stokley, 37, told The Denver Post on Thursday from his Colorado home that he will retire after 15 seasons in the NFL. A fourth-round pick of the Ravens in 1999, Stokley signed with Baltimore during training camp and caught 13 passes for 115 yards in an injury-filled season that ended when he was placed on injured reserve Dec. 10 after suffering a concussion.
"I'm glad I played this year because now I know I'm done," Stokley said, adding that he's still dealing with the effects of his latest concussion. "Had I not played this year I would have always felt I could have kept playing. I still know I can play but my body just can't go through it anymore."
Stokley will long be remembered for ending the team's five-game touchdown drought in 2000 and scoring the Ravens' first touchdown in Super Bowl XXXV.
Here's the rest of your wake-up caw ...
Offensive coordinator Jim Caldwell didn't try to avoid taking the blame for an offense that has scored just one touchdown over their last eight quarters and has reached 30 points just once this season. “A number of things we can do better, there’s no question about that, and that certainly starts with me,” Caldwell said, via Comcast SportsNet. “I got to do a better job helping these guys.”
Wide receiver Torrey Smith, the first Raven since Qadry Ismail in 1999 to eclipse 1,100 receiving yards in a season, can break Michael Jackson's single-season franchise mark of 1,201 yards if he can produce 101 yards in the regular-season finale. "I look at it as I could easily be at 1,500 yards right now. Easily," Smith told The Baltimore Sun. "I can think of a few plays off the top of my head — I can still envision them — that I didn't make. The past few weeks there have been plays where I didn't make them. It's just as simple as that. I didn't get it done."
The fact that the Cincinnati Bengals are undefeated at home has not gone unnoticed by the Ravens. “Look at them," coach John Harbaugh said, via the team's official website. “They’re the division champs, they’re 7-0 at home, they’ve got very good players, they’ve got very good coaches. What they’ve done this year speaks for itself, so we’ve got our hands full.”