Wow, what a huge first day of Free Agency! What recession? As one of the NFL Network's guys said, former Tennessee Titan and new, rich Washington Redskin DT Albert Haynesworth got more money ($100+ million over 7 years) than most franchises were originally paid for. I guess that as long as we keep selling out those NFL stadiums, the salary cap will keep rising and the players will get paid.
I would have liked to see Bart Scott back in the fold and when I heard we were still in it I thought we might win the open bidding war. But then Rex Ryan realized he needed to make a statement and keep raising the stakes and finally the Ravens woke up and said, no way. The Jets paid Bart $48 million over six years, a ton of money who made his rep next to the best MLB in NFL history, just like so many others that have left for the big bucks and never had the same level of success after leaving Ray's shadow (Jamie Sharper, Edgerton Hartwell, Adalius Thomas).
Baltimore apparently has also lost center Jason Brown. While the signing is not official, it looks like he will be a St. Louis Ram next year, at around $37.5 million over five years. A great deal for Brown, who only played one full year at center and now gets paid as one of the top gurd/centers in the league, a price the Ravens were very smart not to involve themselves in. They will just have to slide Chris Chester over into the center position and look in the middle to late rounds of April's draft for another true center (Brown was a 4th round draft pick).
The Ravens did make a big splash in free agency, signing former Denver Bronco and Atlanta Falcon CB Domonique Foxworth to a four year, $28 million contract, with $16.5 million guaranteed. Foxworth, a Maryland Terp alum and homegrown talent, is thrilled to be starting alongside his friend Fabian Washington, giving us two very good CB's in our secondary. That should remove CB from our list of whom to draft with that 26th pick in April's draft. Even though GM Ozzie Newsome is well known for going after the best pick available, he will probably be focusing on WR, TE and possibly LB, depending on how the Ray Lewis issue resolves itself.
Speaking of Ray, earlier in the day yesterday it was reported that he turned down the Ravens $25 million offer, with $17.5 guaranteed and was pissed at our "low-ball" offer and would not be returning to the Ravens. By the end of the day, Ray himself said he had not ruled out returning to his former team. He was in Florida with his family, had never said the reported remarks and would probably make a final decision on Monday. If the Ravens end up re-signing Ray, combined with the losses and addition(s), I'd be more than satisfied with the results of the first few days of free agency. There are still a ton of players at all positions available to fill out portions of our roster prior to and even after the draft in April. Click here to see Yahoo's! listing of all free agents and keep up with the signings.
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