Ray's Top 25: UCLA making moves


Ray's Top 25: UCLA making moves

Every week, our Senior Decider votes in the Associated Press Top 25 poll, which of course makes all other opinions both superfluous and valueless (hey, dont say you never get your moneys worth here).

So here, after Week Two, is the world of college football, whether you like it or not. And if you dont, theres a new one next week you might like better.

RELATED: Ratto's Week One rankings

1 Alabama No news is no news. Still the best team, although Western Kentucky isn't exactly a barometer. 2 Southern California Syracuse was a tougher out than people thought. 3 Florida State Not a good team after a rain delay. Fortunately had a 55-point lead on Savannah State at the time. 4 Oregon Second week in a row with a big lead that shrinks when the dogs are kenneled. 5 LSU Looked better against a better team. 6 Georgia Blooded Missouri but good. 7 Michigan State Central Michigan is often a tougher out than this. 8 Oklahoma Beating Florida A&M isn't the same as deserving to move up. 9 Ohio State Central Florida could end up being pretty good, thereby making this a tidy win 10 Texas New Mexico couldn't have needed the money this badly. 11 South Carolina Stuffed East Carolina, which is as it should be. 12 UCLA Beating Rice? Meh. Beating Nebraska? Not meh at all. 13 Clemson Auburn may not be as big a win as it seems, but Ball State is exactly as big as it seems. 14 Notre Dame Nobody will be happy with their beating Purdue by three, but any non-loss should make them happy. 15 Florida Texas A&M's first SEC backhand was not a decisive one. 16 Virginia Tech Only moved because Nos. 10, 11, 16, 17 and 18 disappeared. 17 Kansas State Beat Miami of Florida. We need to say "Of Florida" because the days of "The U" are over. 18 TCU Opened with a big win against archrival Grambling. God, when does October get here? 19 West Virginia Didn't play at all and gained five spots, proving the value of doing nothing. 20 Louisville Missouri State is no Kentucky. 21 Stanford Duke is no San Jose State. 22 Mississippi State Methinks Auburn is going to have a down year. 23 Iowa State Beat Tulsa and Iowa, which means zero wins against cupcake schools. 24 Ohio Beat Penn State and New Mexico State, which is the same thing. 25 Michigan Sitting proudly but tenuously between Alabama and Air Force.

Report: Ravens signing arena league QB over Kaepernick

Report: Ravens signing arena league QB over Kaepernick

Colin Kaepernick still does not have an NFL team.

The Baltimore Ravens, who were linked to Kaepernick after praise from head coach John Harbaugh, have reportedly signed David Olson, according to nfldraftdiamonds.com

Olson, who played at Stanford and Clemson, most recently took snaps for the Kansas City Phantoms of the Champions Indoor Football League (CIF).

"He’s a great guy," Harbaugh said on Thursday about Keapernick, who remains an unrestricted free agent. "He’s a guy right now that’s being talked about. We’ll just see what happens with that. Only speculation right now. He’s a really good football player and as I said at the owners' meetings, I do believe he’ll be playing in the National Football League this year."

Starting quarterback Joe Flacco is expected to miss time due to a back injury.

With options at RT, Raiders to release veteran Austin Howard


With options at RT, Raiders to release veteran Austin Howard

The Raiders will release Austin Howard, one of their big free-agent signings from the 2014 offseason. The offensive lineman was informed of his release just before training camp, according to a league source.

Howard confirmed the separation on social media with an early Friday morning post: 

Howard was scheduled to make $4.9 million in base salary this season, with $2.4 million in dead money against the salary cap. The Raiders can afford the cap hit, but will enjoy the slowing salary cash flow in 2017.

Howard inked a five-year, $30 million contract with the Raiders early in the unrestricted free agent signing period. Howard played right guard in his first season, but moved to tackle in the following two years. He made 39 starts in three seasons in silver and black, mostly at right tackle.

Howard played 2016 under duress. He worked through an ankle issue early that year and had offseason shoulder surgery that impacted him throughout the Raiders offseason program.

He regained health recently after missing the offseason program, but the Raiders chose to part ways with the veteran and focus on other options at right tackle. Marshall Newhouse has pole position in the competition, but Vadal Alexander will challenge him for a starting spot. Rookie forth-round pick David Sharpe will also compete.

The crop of talent left Howard with too-high a salary entering a tight position battle, and expendable.

The Raiders will have two spots available on their 90-man roster following the release of Howard and running back Taiwan Jones. 

Here is Howard's full Instagram post: 

OAKLAND!!! A lifetime of memories have been made these past three years, and I am grateful for every single one of them. Unfortunately my time with the #Raiders has come to an end. To my OL dawgs, love y'all boys. #RaiderNation appreciate all your support, you guys are like none other. I came to Oakland my first year with a start of 0-10... through hard work and dedication we built a team that had more success it had in years, and thus we turned this group of players into a play-off bound and elite team. Starting on this Offensive line for the majority of that time is something that I'll never forget. One thing I can say is that no matter the situation, no matter if it was battling through injury, or political scrutiny that this business demands, I left it all out the for my teammates and always had and will always have their back. I will always be proud of that. Thank you to Mr. Davis and the Raiders organization/coaches that allowed me this opportunity. Thank you to my family, especially my parents, siblings, my friends, my agent Kevin Robinson, and last but DEFINITELY not least my beautiful wife Larissa who has been with me since the beginning, and through the thick and thin and has SELFLESSLY been the REAL reason that I've been able to do my job on the field for the passed seven seasons, for all your love, support, encouragement and prayers! To my baby girl, Daddy loves you and couldn't imagine this life without you! Having an opportunity and blessing to share all of this with you has been the biggest gift of all...As upsetting as it is, that "business" gets in the way of a good thing, I know that this is not the end of my NFL journey. Looking forward to what God has planned for me next... #DoubleSevens #NotDone #SomethingBigComingNext #NFL #DontBlink #Challenge #ImUpForIt #MovingForward #TrainsComin #GodIsGood #WatchThis #Oakland #YearEight #SeeYouSoon #UNI #Panthers

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