As expected today, the Baltimore Ravens signed All-Pro defensive end Elvis Dumervil to his five-year contract. In his press conference, Dumervil spoke of his reasons for choosing the Ravens over his old team, the Denver Broncos.
According to Ryan Mink of baltimoreravens.com, Dumervil had this to say about his departure:
“At the end of the day, it was an unfortunate situation that happened. I think everybody has their part in the situation. Obviously, leaving a really good organization in the Denver Broncos. … But [an] opportunity came when I could come to another proven-winning organization and a first-class organization, just leaving one great one to another great one. So, that was an opportunity, and I took it.”
Of course, all sides played a part in the “fax-gate” situation that led to Dumervil’s release. The defensive end decided to fire his old agent, and then hit the road for a team that just won a championship, although they have been purged of some high quality talent this offseason.
Nobody expects Dumervil to come out and say that he is full of disdain for John Elway asking him to take a pay cut, then finagling late verbiage in his contract at the eleventh hour. There is no way that he would ever get on a podium and tell the public how he really feels.
But his main reasoning was that he wanted to go to a winner. The last time I checked, that is exactly what Elway has been constructing in Denver.
The Ravens may very well be past their peak after signing Joe Flacco to a monstrous contract this offseason, leaving little money for high quality players around him on both sides of the ball.
Dumervil wanted to go to a team that is a proven winner–Baltimore affords him that. He also was impressed with the way that the Ravens crowd “rocked” when the defense was on the field. Am I mistaken, or is Denver not one of the loudest stadiums in the NFL?
When all was said and done, Dumervil said, “At the end of the day, there was no ill-will. There were no hard feelings. I just felt it was a time to change scenery.”
This seems like a player that has already toed the company line not to cause any waves, and I can respect that. I still believe it is soft reasoning for leaving a team that is on their way up, to go to a team that may very well be on the way down.
Let’s hope Dumervil has a solid and respectable rest of his career as a Raven, or any other team he will end up playing for. He was an exemplary player for the Broncos both on and off the field, and the Ravens are fortunate to have landed him.
But for all intents and purposes, the scandal that led to his release, along with all of the happenings since then lead me to believe that he could not wait to get out of Dove Valley. Give all the soft reasoning you want, Dumervil, fans know otherwise.
“Rant” your thoughts below on Dumervil’s statement after signing with the Ravens today.