Reporting Bob Haynie
So far, during the NFL free agency period, the Baltimore Ravens have lost five players–including three starters– while not bringing in any replacements.
Of course, because of these events, some Ravens’ fans have already begun pushing the panic button and are bracing themselves for a fourth-place finish in the AFC North. I think it’s a little too early to judge this offseason as a failure and dismiss the defending division champs as also-rans.
The loss of starting LG Ben Grubbs is a tough blow. But there is still plenty of time to fill his shoes. Can Baltimore find a player of comparable skills to Grubbs? That might be tough to do. However, you can still fill that need with a player who can represent and keep you competitive.
LB Jarret Johnson may be hard to replace, as well. If you remember, we said the same thing about Adalius Thomas after the 2006 season. The Ravens have been fine since Thomas left.
Defensive lineman Cory Redding had a nice two-year run for the club. But with Arthur Jones and Pernell McPhee, the Ravens should be able to overcome his defection to the Indianapolis Colts. We haven’t even made it to the NFL Draft yet. Reinforcements will be coming soon enough. Keep in mind, the Browns, Bengals and Steelers haven’t exactly set the world on fire since free agency started.
So let’s relax and let the offseason continue to unfold. The Ravens will be fine.