If Not The Ravens,...Then Who?

Rob Carr

From 1984-1995, fans in the city of Baltimore did not have an NFL team to root for.

The city tried to do it the right way after their Baltimore Colts were ripped out of their lives on a snowy morning in March 1984. The city put together easily the most attractive and legitimate offer to the league that should have earned them an expansion team. However, in a series of moves that appeared to obviously ignore the city's attempt to be rewarded for waiting, then-NFL Commissioner Paul Tagliabue offended the city by telling them that they'd be better off putting that money towards a museum.

After watching smaller TV markets Jacksonville and Carolina get expansion teams, Baltimore realized the only way to get back in the league was to offer the city to a current NFL team, leading Art Modell and the Cleveland Browns to move here and become the Ravens in 1996.

However, what if no team came here and this town continued without the NFL all this time? This would have meant that there would have been no pro football, outside the USFL and CFL, for almost 30 years since the Colts left for Indianapolis.

During the gap of time between the Colts and Ravens, what team, if any, did you root for? If the Ravens never came here, what team would you have been rooting for all this time?

I liked the Green Bay Packers and Oakland Raiders and yes, have to admit I rooted for the Washington Redskins to win the Super Bowl in 1983, since one of my first dates with my soon-to-be wife was in Georgetown the night before the Super Bowl and the town was awash in Redskins-mania.

I have since cleanse myself of that bacteria (the Redskins, and to be honest, the wife too. But that's a little harsh, so sorry if that offends anyone!) I still have an affinity for Green Bay, as it was great to see the smallest city in the NFL win the Super Bowl a few years ago, with such a great fan base and history.

So, with the hope and expectation that no one will say they rooted for the Pittsburgh Steelers, Cincinnati Bengals, Cleveland Browns, Dallas Cowboys or even the Indianapolis Colts, what team did you root for during the void of the NFL in Baltimore and if there still wasn't a team here, who would you get behind and cheer for Sunday afternoons?

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