Bryant McKinnie has been a mystery wrapped in a riddle during his time here in Baltimore. When he originally signed here after being cut from the Minnesota Vikings for "reportedly" showing up to camp at nearly 400 lbs. he promised to be in shape by the time he got to Baltimore. He was not. He played that season at the plump old weight of 370ish pounds for the most part but still did a better job than anyone else we had on our roster could have done.
The following season, last year, McKinnie once again showed his evil side by showing up to camp over weight and out of shape after reporting to the team that he was quickly shedding pounds and would reach his playing weight by the time he got to training camp. Again, that didn't happen. I know "Big Mac" fancies himself the next Shug Night with his record label and what not but that doesn't mean he needs to match his size as well. I'm sure he can be just as dubious standing at 6'8" and weighing in at a slim 360 lbs.
As a result of his lack of off season conditioning Bryant fell into the infamous "Harbaugh Dog House" and much maligned tackle Michael Oher was again moved to the blind side where he has struggled in the past. Worst of all the team was worse off because of one mans inability to stop eating cheeseburgers.
As the season progressed the Ravens made it clear that they were perfectly willing to go on with the unit they had as long as Big Mac didn't take it seriously enough. Taking that road seamed to work as Bryant got himself back into shape just in time for the post season run and the rest, as they say, is history.
So McKinnie visited the Miami Dolphins and the San Diego Chargers in the past two weeks and came away with a contract offer from the Chargers. He must be doing something right this off season. Rumor has it that he has been spending his time in South Florida training and keeping in shape for this season. The fact that he was offered a contract by San Diego and subsequently signed one with the Ravens shows that he is probably in the best shape he has been in in years at this point of the off season. Let's just hope that he doesn't slack off now that pen has been put to paper.
In this reporters opinion, the Ravens were probably waiting as long as they could to re-sign Bryant in hopes that he would have to keep up the hard work all the way to training camp if he wanted to join any NFL team. The contract offer by San Diego threw a big wrench in those plans. All we can do now is hope. Hope that Big Mac can lay off the big mac's at least for the next year or two. after that he can have a McDonalds built in his kitchen for all I care.
It is nice to have him back, however. Bryant brings stability to one of the last areas the Ravens needed it. Now the only real question besides McKinnie's weight is new center Gino Gradkowski and how he will handle the every day grind of an NFL season.