BALTIMORE (WJZ) — A rough start to the week for Ravens fans. Haloti Ngata is off the team and heading to Detroit. And fan favorite Torrey Smith is officially a 49er.
Both star players who went beyond the field with strong community ties.
Meghan McCorkell has more on news fans are buzzing about.
While both Ngata and Smith were known for their contributions on the field, they were also known for their presence throughout the Baltimore community.
A fixture in TV commercials and a big presence in the community, now Haloti Ngata says goodbye to Baltimore as he is traded to the Detroit Lions.
He joins fan favorite Torrey Smith, who just inked a deal with the 49ers, and Jacoby Jones, who will head to the Chargers.
At Sports Radio 105.7 – The Fan, the news about Ngata not coming to terms with the Ravens is a hot topic.
“Ngata. They had to take a stand against him,” said one caller.
“They wanted him to retire a Raven. And from what I heard, he wanted to retire as a Raven,” another caller said.
“You get attached to these guys. And this is when fans hate the salary cap, because this is what it does. It makes you have to get rid of good players,” said WJZ Sports Director Mark Viviano.
At The Sport Shop at the Inner Harbor, Smith, Ngata and Jones gear is still on the shelves. Store workers say it will still sell–even if they’re not Ravens.
“They’re just really good guys in our community and they always will have fans here in Baltimore,” said Nate Scroggins, The Sport Shop.
As the faces of the team change, some fans say they are trusting the Ravens’ front office.
“I’m very confident in next year. As long as we got Ozzie, Bisciotti and John Harbaugh as the coach, we’re OK,” said Matt Bauler, Ravens fan.
“I’m not even worried,” said Luther Taylor. “I trust Ozzie.”
By trading Ngata, the Ravens will receive a fourth and fifth round draft pick.
In a statement on his website, Ngata says: “I am thankful to Ravens Nation, the great fans of Baltimore and the Baltimore Ravens organization for nine wonderful years. I will look back on these years with great memories.”