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Ravens News 3/15: Sayonara Maclin, Joe Thomas retiring and more

Baltimore Ravens v Cincinnati Bengals Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images

Ravens release WR Jeremy Maclin - Kyle P. Barber

Once thought to be the receiver to finally help the Ravens elevate their passing game, Jeremy’s skills never shined through. He hauled in a few impressive catches, but the playmaking ability was far-and-few between. At one point, he was being benched for WR Chris Moore, the Ravens fourth-round pick in 2016.

The cut saves the Ravens a sizable $5 million in cap space.

The cap space gaining by Maclin’s release will come with $2.5 million of dead money attached. The Ravens have racked up more than $9 million in 2018 dead money thus far. After moving on from Danny Woodhead, Austin Howard and Maclin, Tony Jefferson and Brandon Carr are the only 2017 veteran acquisitions that remains with the team.

Cleveland Browns’ Joe Thomas retiring after 11 seasons -

Thomas was selected by the Browns with the third-overall pick in the 2007 NFL Draft. He’s a 10-time Pro Bowler and six-time First Team All-Pro.

Thomas played every offensive snap for the Browns from his rookie season through Week 7 in 2017, when he sustained a torn triceps that ended his streak at 10,363 consecutive snaps. His Iron Man stretch, which consisted of 167 consecutive games, is believed to be the longest consecutive snaps streak in NFL history.

A major loss for the division rival after they rapidly improved their depth chart this offseason. Despite signing former Steelers tackle Chris Hubbard, it will be a challenge for Cleveland to adequately bookend their stout interior considering the relative lack of talent available.

Ravens went bargain basement hunting again - Mike Preston

It’s the same scenario as years past. The Ravens don’t want to pay top-notch receivers. Usually, they sign players on the downside of their careers. The best news to come out of the possible signing of both players is that they are young and at least there isn’t much concern for Achilles’ tendon tears.

Preston’s point is valid. However, it is possible the best receivers were not interested in coming to Baltimore. Unlike many past signings, the Ravens acquisitions at wide receiver can be considered ascending players.

Quarterback rankings: Top 32 signal-callers across NFL - Gregg Rosenthal

24. Joe Flacco

This ranking might be generous based on Flacco’s play over the last two seasons. Now 33 years old and hampered by recurring back issues, Flacco (and the entire Ravensregime under coach John Harbaugh) faces a crossroads year. If the results don’t improve, Baltimore will have to consider moving on.

2017 stats: 16 games | 64.1 pct | 3,141 pass yds | 5.7 ypa | 18 pass TD | 13 INT | 1 rush TD

Rosenthal slots Andy Dalton, Tyrod Taylor and Ryan Tannehill directly above Flacco, with Eli Manning, Patrick Mahomes and Sam Bradford directly below him. Flacco averaged a quarterback rating of 86 and a combined 102:56 TD:INT ratio for the first five years of his career compared to an 82 average rating and 98:74 ratio over the last five seasons.