We’ve got a ton of respect for Ravens owner Steve Bisciotti, a truly self-made man who built his financial empire and then purchased an NFL team. As an owner, he knows what he doesn’t know — and he knows to hire good football people and give them the ability to do their thing, with minimal interference.
But the respect we have for Bisciotti makes his remarks regarding the failed round-one trade with the Bears even more disappointing. He called out the franchise and the family that owns it for failing to compensate the Ravens for a trade that failed happen because the Bears didn’t call it in to the league.
“I’m disappointed in the Bears and the McCaskeys,” Bisciotti said. “It is in my opinion a deviation from their great legacy. They concluded that their heartfelt and admirable apology was sufficient for our loss.”
First, the Ravens didn’t “lose” anything. They wanted Jimmy Smith. And they got Jimmy Smith. They lost nothing.
Second, calling out the McCaskeys by name serves no purpose. Just last month, Bisciotti lamented the public squabbling of the owners and the players. “I’m embarrassed that we’re fighting over money, just like you would be embarrassed if you and your wife were fighting over money in public,” Bisciotti said. “It’s an embarrassing topic to have to get into.”
Nevertheless, Bisciotti has opted to fight over trade compensation in public with one of his partners. The fact that Bisciotti stepped so far out of character could be interpreted as a sign of the stress that he and other owners are feeling as the stutter-step lockout enters its eighth week, as the antitrust litigation heads to the Eighth Circuit, and as the sport seemingly has slid firmly into the eighth level of Hell.