CB Bryant McFadden, a key part of the Pittsburgh Steelers defensive secondary that played great during their run to the Super Bowl title, has signed with the Arizona Cardinals. His contract is reportedly for two years and $10 million, significantly less than what Domonique Foxworth signed for with the Baltimore Ravens (4 years, $28 million). McFadden will start opposite the second year pro Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie, who had a great rookie year for the Cards, who lost to the Steelers in this year's Super Bowl.
McFadden had two intercptions this past season but only started eight games for Pittsburgh. Most of his playing time came as the nickel back, but he played great down the stretch for the league #1 rated defense.
This is the guy that I had wanted the Ravens to grab in the first days of free agency. He would have been significantly cheaper than Foxworth and I'm sure we could have tied him up for more than the two years that the Cardinals did. He knows the other wideouts in the AFC North and he practices every day against the Steelers receivers, namely Hines Ward and Santonio Holmes. That combination of experience within the division would have made it a smart pick up as well. With all due respects to Ravens GM Ozzie Newsome, I just don't get this one. Nothing against Foxworth, as the Ravens have found out the hard way that you can never have enough DB's on your roster. Had McFadden been signed by the Ravens they could grant disgruntled veteran Samari Rolle his request to be released to seek another starting gig on a team, now that it is apparent he would be a nickel back for Baltimore, and an expensive one at that (+$4 million salary). Rolle is on the down side of his career at 32 years old, while McFadden is only 27 years old. However, Ozzie's thought process might have been that after paying Foxworth $7 million a year, to add another CB at $5 million a year was too much at one position.
Hopefully, Ozzie will continue to fill out the roster and prepare us for the draft by adding depth in our secondary as well as other positions. As a true Ravens fan, I have faith that the best GM in the business will end up making the right moves for this team.