Baltimore Ravens: 5 Free Agents They Should Re-Sign This Offseason
5 Free Agents the Baltimore Ravens Should Re-Sign
Earlier in the week, I wrote a piece called the 5 Most Expendable Baltimore Ravens Players. In that piece, I said I wouldn’t be doing the counter to that until sometime next week. Guess what? I’m a liar. I just couldn’t wait. There isn’t a whole lot going on for the Baltimore Ravens at the present time and I have to keep busy somehow, so I’ll be doing this newest slideshow on the free agents that the Ravens should re-sign.
For the Ravens, it’s simple. With the focus being on the defense last year, that focus will switch to the offense this year. Ironically enough, three of the five players I have on this list are on defense, but more on that later. With much need for improvements of the offensive side of the ball, will certain defensive players be left dangling as juicy pieces of meat for all the other teams to salivate and fight over? Possibly, but it’s important that the Ravens don’t give away too much defense for offense. Like Mr. Miyagi says, “Balance, Daniel-san”. Before the start of free agent frenzy and the draft, the Ravens will need to figure how many of their own they need to keep.
The following are the five current Ravens free agents that need to be re-signed. Will all of them be re-signed? Probably not, but these are the five that should be the priorities. Enjoy the show, people.
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5. Dennis Pitta
An obvious choice here as Dennis Pitta is Joe Flacco's boy and probably one of the most reliable targets on the offense. Pitta could possibly be franchised, and he should if a long-term deal can't be procured before then. Without Pitta in the lineup this year, Flacco really struggled finding a go-to guy. To avoid a disappointing repeat of last year, Pitta must be brought back.
4. Eugene Monroe
Michael Oher wasn't the answer at LT. Bryant McKinnie wasn't the answer either (not for a full season anyway). Eugene Monroe was the most consistent player on a bad offensive line in 2013. Common logic says he'll be here for the long haul. Why would the Ravens surrender two draft picks otherwise?
3. Daryl Smith
Daryl Smith was not another example of how great Ozzie Newsome is at bargain shopping. Smith was easily one of the best Ravens defenders this year and surpassed the play of the man he replaced, the great Ray Lewis (I'm talking about the old man version of Lewis). Smith will be 32 when the 2014 season starts, so there shouldn't be heavy competition for him. A two-year deal for Smith would be ideal.
2. Corey Graham
Corey Graham is probably one of the biggest wild cards as it pertains to being re-signed. The Ravens already have starting caliber cornerbacks in Jimmy Smith and Lardarius Webb. However, Graham is more than capable of starting if one of those guys gets injured (Webb has been quite injury-prone over the years). He is one of the better no. 3 CBs in the league. Did I mention that Graham is an ace on special teams too? He is not a priority, but would be nice to retain if the price is right.
1. Arthur Jones
Arthur Jones will probably be this year's Danelle Ellerbe. Jones has really come into his own as a 3-4 run stopping DE. He's also a decent pass rusher (four sacks). The problem is that other teams will probably outbid the Ravens for him. The Ravens honestly have bigger priorities (Monroe, Pitta, etc.). In a perfect world, Jones would be back in a heartbeat, but nothing is perfect about the NFL salary cap as we know it today.