Rick Snider: No love lost in D.C. area for Ravens

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The Baltimore Ravens' bandwagon apparently won't include many burgundy-and-gold clad fans from suburban Washington.

It seems as if few Redskins fans living in Maryland will jump on as the Ravens head to New Orleans for Super Bowl XLVII on Feb. 3. No sharing of fan bases -- even for one game.

Twitter, the unofficial home of haters, brought out a strong anti-Ravens surge during an unofficial poll about whether simply wishing Washington's northern neighbors well against the San Francisco 49ers was crossing the line.

"This is the type of mentality that leads to participation trophies in pee wee sports," declared @jonnyiam.

The two teams always have competed for fans to fuel the rivalries. The Baltimore Colts used to have "Colts Corrals" fan clubs as close to Washington as Bowie. Howard and Anne Arundel counties have more Baltimore fans than Washington ones, but it's a block-by-block feud in Laurel. Commuter expansion into Frederick over the past decade has left more Redskins fans there than supporters of the Steelers or Ravens.

The Senators' 1972 exit resulted in Washingtonians rooting for the Baltimore Orioles until the Nationals arrived in 2005. Orioles owner Peter Angelos' attempt to block a team from coming to Washington for years caused some sore feelings around the nation's capital. Then again, some Baltimoreans felt Redskins owner Jack Kent Cooke did his best to keep the Cleveland Browns from moving to Charm City by trying to build a stadium midway between the cities.

Real old-timers never forgave Washington for stealing the Baltimore Bullets, though many current Wizards fans might opt to send the team back north.

Residents of the two cities often don't like each other, and that's OK. But given the Ravens and Redskins meet only every four years and Washington won the December encounter, it would seem fair for Washingtonians to wish Baltimoreans well. It's not the kind of blood feud that New York Giants and Jets fans endure.

"Crossing the line," stated @BrianSinkoff. "It's like being a Yankees and Mets fan. Can't and shouldn't ever happen."

Maybe, but a few Redskins fans can stand a one-game truce before returning to opposing corners.

"Platonic handshakes are OK, pledging undying love is not," wrote Everett Will of @DCAbloob.

Steve Kahl, who calls himself @yournewgovernor, is willing to shake a few Ravens backers' hands for votes.

"As the future Governor of MD," he wrote, "I have to wish the Ravens well. Even though I'm a lifelong Redskin fan. Good for the state."

If Ravens fans get too haughty, Redskins supporters quickly will remind them of Washington's 31-28 overtime victory over Baltimore on Dec. 9. Then again, that's good news for the Ravens because the Redskins beat the last two Super Bowl champs. Maybe some Redskins fans want the Ravens to win just to continue that streak.

Examiner columnist Rick Snider has covered local sports since 1978. Read more on Twitter @Snide_Remarks or email rsnider@washingtonexaminer.com.

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