Nov 3, 2013; Cleveland, OH, USA; Baltimore Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco (5) throws the ball in the second quarter against the Cleveland Browns at FirstEnergy Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports
Week by week, step by step, the 2014 version of the Baltimore Ravens is methodically being put together, as issues and concerns from the season past are being addressed and hopefully rectified.
The single biggest piece of news over the past week has been the signing of former Houston tight end Owen Daniels. (Our article on this signing is here.) The two-time pro-bowler will be reunited with his former coach Gary Kubiak, and he will serve to bolster and help teach the tight-end-intensive offensive scheme. This also gives Joe Flacco another strong-handed receiver who is effective in the midst of traffic.
Yet another former Texan will also be coming to Baltimore in the person of running back Justin Forsett. He played with Houston under Kubiak in 2012. This past season he was with Jacksonville, but was unable to play much due to injuries (broken foot). Forsett is known for his versatility on the football field – being able to not only run, but catch balls, pass block, and even contribute on special teams. A veteran of seven seasons, the former seventh-round pick will be playing for his fifth franchise. Not likely to be a star, he does give depth to a team concerned about the legal issues of Ray Rice, along with his recovery from health issues along with Bernard Pierce.
The Ravens signed one of their own in free agent Terrence Cody. The nose tackle was the number two pick of the Ravens in 2010. His 2011 season was a very strong one, though a series of injuries and offseason surgeries have hampered his ability to become all that it was hoped this giant man could be. Cody spoke of being fully healthy for the first time in quite a long while, and so his hopes (and the Ravens’) are high that a new era may be entered.
A new member of the Ravens family was born this past week – yes, born … a little boy in the household of Torrey Smith and wife. Hey, just what the Ravens need is another Smith!
In an extremely interesting article this past week – one that I had quite a number of people bring up to me in conversation (as it was picked up by many sources) – speaks to the misconception about Joe Flacco’s contract. It is an accepted common-knowledge viewpoint that his salary is so high that it adversely affects the salary cap and therefore limits all else that came be done. By illustration, it is saying that Flacco consumes such a big piece of the pie, that there can never be enough to successfully feed everyone else. Salary cap formulae are very, very complicated. But simply stated, it turns out that there are 10 NFL quarterbacks with salary cap numbers that are higher than what the Ravens are dealing with. The article can be linked to HERE.
So, another good week – three more pieces defined. Each of these moves brings clarity and perspective to prioritizing the draft.