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Boldin: Ravens are losing the key components of their title run

Boldin Getty Images

Having been shipped from Baltimore to San Francisco, wide receiver Anquan Boldin says he’s surprised to see that the Ravens’ front office has decided not to keep together the nucleus of a team that just won the Super Bowl.

Asked on Mike and Mike in the Morning if he was surprised that the Ravens are losing so many players who played significant roles in their championship, Boldin answered, “Definitely.”

“I thought those guys were key components of winning last year — Paul Kruger had a great year, Dannell Ellerbe played great for us, especially down the stretch, myself included in that, a guy like Ed Reed, I don’t think you can let him go — he’s a Raven legend, the things he’s done for that organization, you can’t lose a guy like that,” Boldin said.

Baltimore also lost two of its top veteran leaders, linebacker Ray Lewis and center Matt Birk, to retirement. That’s a lot to replace.

But while Boldin doesn’t like the fact that the Ravens sent him packing, he says he’ll have positive thoughts about his time with the team.

“It’s definitely bittersweet. I always felt that when I signed with Baltimore, that would be the last place I would call home in the NFL. But my memories there are great,” Boldin said.

Ravens fans have great memories, too. Of a team that will look a lot different this season than it looked in the Super Bowl.

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109 Responses to “Boldin: Ravens are losing the key components of their title run”
  1. fuglyflorio says: Mar 14, 2013 9:47 AM

    But he’s retiring right? Raven for life, remember. I mean unless he’s just another liar. Another player greedy for the money … who’d say anything … do anything for the cash. That’s not him, is it?

  2. wludford says: Mar 14, 2013 9:47 AM

    “are losing” ? you mean “lost”.

  3. sjoyner59 says: Mar 14, 2013 9:48 AM

    he is correct,I would say they have zero chance of repeating

  4. pariseinminnesotabichez says: Mar 14, 2013 9:48 AM

    One champ wonders

  5. hehateme2 says: Mar 14, 2013 9:49 AM

    Well… hope they enjoyed their recent Championship. It may be the last one.

  6. reed20ravens says: Mar 14, 2013 9:50 AM

    you sound salty

  7. thefox61 says: Mar 14, 2013 9:50 AM

    Thank you, for that fine analysis Capt. Obvious.

  8. captainoffense says: Mar 14, 2013 9:51 AM

    Ozzie always reloads. The Patriots do this every year and noone talks about it. You aren’t supposed to overpay for players and you’re supposed to dump the ones on the wrong side of 30. Ravens are still the class of the North so all you haters will just have to deal with it.

  9. 49ersandshivabowl says: Mar 14, 2013 9:51 AM

    Nothing puts bittersweet memories to sleep like winning ‘Q’. You’ll be catching passes from one of the most dynamic young quarterbacks in the NFL accompanied by the fastest NFL TE in Davis, the emerging elite talent of Crabtree with an explosive dynamo of Kendall Hunter and Lamichael James in the backfield. Glad to have you on our squad!

  10. RavenzGunnerz says: Mar 14, 2013 9:51 AM

    The best time to rebuild is after winning the super bowl. Not waiting any longer.

    While I would have preferred to keep boldin, let’s not kid ourselves:

    1. The defense was ranked 26th, finished 17th overall.

    2. We had one of the oldest defense in the league

    So, it’s the perfect time to blow up the team and rebuild with a young nucleus.

  11. jcmeyer10 says: Mar 14, 2013 9:51 AM

    As a Pats fan I can attest. Yes, yes they are.

  12. geemoney713 says: Mar 14, 2013 9:52 AM

    It will also look a lot different in the standings. 10-6 last year should look more like 6-10 this year.

    10-6 last year was generous anyway with the “win” against the Chargers where Ray Rice was over a yard short for the 1st down.

  13. Steeley McBeam says: Mar 14, 2013 9:52 AM

    And yet Ravens fans swear everything is ok…

  14. charleythedinosaur says: Mar 14, 2013 9:54 AM

    All you need is a good QB and they still have the highest paid QB in the league that must mean he’s awesome right? Right?

  15. bucrightoff says: Mar 14, 2013 9:54 AM

    Man is speaking the truth. Gonna need some great drafting the next few years to avoid the AFC North basement.

  16. clownsfan says: Mar 14, 2013 9:54 AM

    Same thing happened after their last championship. Ravens are gonna be just fine. They ALWAYS are.

  17. skoobyfl says: Mar 14, 2013 9:55 AM

    Everything is just fine, according to Kevin Bacon.

  18. flash1283 says: Mar 14, 2013 9:55 AM

    Yes every one knows this, except Ravens fans.

  19. dickjagger says: Mar 14, 2013 9:55 AM

    After the first Super Bowl The Ravens did the “Mortgage the future for the present thing” restructuring deals and blowing up the cap to make another run. Well that didn’t work and they learned they’re lesson from it. Boldin, Pollard and Reed were a huge part of this title run but they’re also getting older (Pollards 28 but can’t cover) and aren’t worth the cap space. Ellerbe and Kruger were a big part of that too but you can’t give ridiculous money to guys who only had one good season. Newsome is the best GM in the league for a reason, the Ravens will be just fine.

  20. anonymousraven1 says: Mar 14, 2013 9:56 AM

    Here’s the thing, though. As a whole, yeah, the Ravens have seemed to lose a ton. But when you look at it individually, what were they to do?
    Birk and Lewis retired.
    Bobbie Williams and Kemo were awful last year.
    Kruger and Ellerbe were both LAUGHABLY overpaid on the FA market.
    Boldin was tough, but if Welker is pulling in $6 million a year, it’s tough to justify paying Boldin that on the last year of his deal.
    Pollard was obviously a headcase and locker room cancer.
    Every single one of those moves is beyond defensible, it’s just tough they all happened at once.

  21. accipiterq says: Mar 14, 2013 9:56 AM

    Of course they’re losing anyone; they signed their Top-15 QB to a back-breaking 120M contract.

  22. accipiterq says: Mar 14, 2013 9:57 AM

    Also, they’re not rebuilding with younger talent on D as someone said….they let ellerbe & kruger go, both fairly young guys right there

  23. steelerben says: Mar 14, 2013 9:57 AM

    I’d love nothing more than to be able to predict the Ravens having a horrible year, not just because it would be satisfying as a Steelers fan but because it would keep ravenator’s trolling to a minimum. Unfortunately, I’m realistic enough to know that Ozzie Newsome runs a tight ship.

    While I do think that losing Boldin will make Joe look a good deal less elite, having Ray Rice and a healthy Bernard Pierce will help in that area.

    While it is difficult to lose most of your line backing corp and both starting safeties I’m pretty sure you don’t do that without a plan in place. The defensive side of the ball wasn’t the teams strong suit last year anyway.

    It is easy to say that Flacco’s contract is going to sink that team, but a team that is well run and well coached isn’t so easily dismissed.

  24. ravenator says: Mar 14, 2013 9:58 AM

    Anyone want to call the Ravens old now? The front office knows exactly what they’re doing. I encourage you to look closely and besides Boldin on the offense, the only thing being retooled is the defense, which wasn’t on par to begin with.

  25. officialgame says: Mar 14, 2013 10:03 AM

    I’m not a Raven fan but I believe they are smart to rebuild and move on from the Lewis/ Reid era. They were somewhat lucky last year, caught lightning in a bottle and ended up with a Superbowl. Instead of over paying declining veterans and good but not great players they are rebuilding with a franchise QB in place.

  26. dublindemonszfl says: Mar 14, 2013 10:04 AM

    You might call it a mutiny, maybe.

  27. sweetwillie66 says: Mar 14, 2013 10:07 AM

    fuglyflorio, he was traded…your comment is incredibly uninformed.

  28. jarvis1104 says: Mar 14, 2013 10:07 AM

    As a Steelers fan, I must admit Baltimore is doing the right thing. The defense was mediocre last year. Ozzie sees that. The Steelers and Ravens don’t rebuild, they retool. Its been going on for years now.

  29. brooklynniner19 says: Mar 14, 2013 10:07 AM

    Boldin stop talk about your past and say something positive about your future with SF. Kaepernick will make you forget about Flappo and them birds.

  30. albertmn says: Mar 14, 2013 10:08 AM

    The Super Bowl winners lose players to other teams EVERY year. Why are so many people surprised EVERY offseason that it is happening again?

  31. jeffml says: Mar 14, 2013 10:08 AM

    How many teams repeat anyway? We have the Lombardi, so might as well start to get younger and not put ourselves in cap hell for years to come. As much as I like Boldin, Pollard, and Ellerbee, I can see the big picture.

  32. dennis2488 says: Mar 14, 2013 10:08 AM

    Oh so that’s what happens when a team mortgages their future for a few years of title runs?

  33. barbasol11111111 says: Mar 14, 2013 10:08 AM

    1) but that doesn’t mean they aren’t replaceable and

    2) Super Bowl runs are predicated on a lot of luck these days with so much parity. Chasing repeats is fools gold and good gms like Ozzie focus on consistent and long term success. A lot of these contracts were bad values and Ozzie avoided it.

    They are great taking undervalued, veteran FAs (mckinnie, pollard, q) and great at getting late round picks (Kruger) and undrafted FAs (ellerbe) that outplay a lot of other teams high round picks.

    They do it every year. They’re doing it again. They might not repeat, but they will consistently be in a position to make a run at a SB more often than not.

    Most other fan bases are dying for this level of management prowess

  34. getyourownname says: Mar 14, 2013 10:10 AM

    Sorry to see him leave, he deserves great credit, not going to criticize him, but reality is that teams that stand pat are always moving backwards.

    There’s a reason teams don’t use players to make their personnel decisions. The good teams, anyway. Until Ravens FO decisions are shown, on the field, to generate same level of results as the Jets’, it deserves deference.

  35. harrisonhits2 says: Mar 14, 2013 10:10 AM

    The Ravens, like the Pats, have a front office that is very good at managing the cap, not overpaying for players and reloading.

    All the Pats ever hear during the offseason is sky is falling, the team is finished and won’t make the playoffs again for years. And every year they’re back in the playoffs, right where I expect to see the Ravens again this year.

  36. RavenzGunnerz says: Mar 14, 2013 10:12 AM

    pariseinminnesotabichez says:
    Mar 14, 2013 9:48 AM
    One champ wonders
    ——————————————-

    Wow, somebody doesn’t know the history of the NFL.

    The ravens are now 2 champs and counting, but your trolling get in the way of checking the facts.

  37. Nofoolnodrool says: Mar 14, 2013 10:14 AM

    ravenator | Mar 14, 2013, 9:58 AM EDT
    Anyone want to call the Ravens old now? The front office knows exactly what they’re doing. I encourage you to look closely and besides Boldin on the offense, the only thing being retooled is the defense, which wasn’t on par to begin with.
    Spin,spin,lie,lie. You change your tune to fit the song. No wonder you are universally viewed as a joke and not taken seriously, but glad you are around to provide constant comedic relief. Ravens by the way will be ok, but will not win the afcn the bengals will.

  38. captainoffense says: Mar 14, 2013 10:16 AM

    Best quarterback in the division (anyone who would argue this is a complete d-bag or is from Pittsburgh, and I would say those are 1 in the same), best running game in the division, best deep threat wideouts in the division, best tight ends in the division, best return game in the division, best O-line in the division = another home playoff game this season. Last I checked, offense wins championships.

  39. tombradyswig says: Mar 14, 2013 10:20 AM

    Boldin: states the plainly obvious!

  40. rayray5227 says: Mar 14, 2013 10:21 AM

    In Ozzie we trust.

  41. rexryanseacrest says: Mar 14, 2013 10:22 AM

    After the 2010 season, the Ravens cut ties with Heap, McGahee, Mason, Josh Wilson, Houshmandzadeh and Kelly Gregg among others. Most people said they would be 6-10 at best. They made it to the AFC Championship game the following year.

    After the 2011 season, the Ravens lost Redding, Grubbs, Jarret Johnson, and a solid backup RB in Ricky Williams. Again, everyone said they would have a down year. They won the SB.

    True story.

    And to further my point, how did all those guys do after they left the Ravens? Besides maybe McGahee, not much.

  42. moagecu says: Mar 14, 2013 10:24 AM

    As.a Raven fan, I am not the happiest about the moves made, but I am getting very excited about the guerre
    future. We are going younger and I can’t fault the front office for that. We almost assuredly will not win again next year, but ill take the two ravens super bowls over the eagles 0

  43. barbasol11111111 says: Mar 14, 2013 10:25 AM

    Wtf does one and done even mean in these comments?

    Is it possible to win more than one Super Bowl in a year?

  44. elitekane says: Mar 14, 2013 10:28 AM

    Duh, don’t ya know the old quote ” Don’t fix what ain’t broke.”

  45. kingpel says: Mar 14, 2013 10:28 AM

    This is how good teams stay good. Sure they may be 8-8 or 9-7 if things dont pan out, but lets face it. That is a GOOD year for most teams in the NFL. The Steelers and Ravens know how to manage their talent to remain in the hunt year in, year out.

  46. steelforce43 says: Mar 14, 2013 10:29 AM

    Don’t worry Ravens Fans Ozzie has something up his sleeve. Obviously, Boldin knows nothing about the team. He is all sour grapes. LMAO

    I love this, EAT CROW BOYS AND GIRLS!!! Couldn’t happen to a better fan base.

    Your team is younger alright. Younger and WORSE!!! Can’t wait to watch the Bungels and the Browns take over the division.

  47. iamedreed says: Mar 14, 2013 10:29 AM

    remember how joe could only throw to derrick mason?? now its anquan boldin? please ozzies been down this road before, time to put those 11 draft picks to good use and reload for another championship run

    and if you think they traded anquan without at least talking to joe about it first you crazy

  48. hmink96 says: Mar 14, 2013 10:30 AM

    You guys realize they dont start playing real games for almost 6 months, right?

  49. patriotinvasion says: Mar 14, 2013 10:34 AM

    Hey, it is what it is. I respect what he and the Ravens were able to put together last year, which unfortunately included a but whooping of my Pats in the AFCCG.

    Pats go through this all the time. It’s the nature of the league when it comes to salary cap and aging vets.

  50. getyourownname says: Mar 14, 2013 10:35 AM

    One thing Q is right about – that is a lot of leadership to lose (although Pollard doesn’t sound like he was at same level). It will require someone (or several someones) to take their place. We’ll see who it is and how well they do. But no reason to assume it won’t be done.

  51. jm91rs says: Mar 14, 2013 10:36 AM

    I hate the Ravens, but let’s be honest. Most of us would gladly give up a few years of contending for just one superbowl ring.

    I’m glad they won’t be competitive for a few years and I love laughing at the Flacco contract, but in all honesty I’ll trade my team’s 3 out of 4 playoff appearances for 1 superbowl + 5 years of sucking. Most people probably would make this trade.

  52. Max says: Mar 14, 2013 10:39 AM

    Flacco wants to be paid like the boss…. then he will have to do without certain things….. like talented pro bowlers

  53. purpleattack says: Mar 14, 2013 10:43 AM

    A bunch of fans being shortsighted? No way. While I do think Ozzie makes mistakes, I am certain he knows what he is doing. They tried to do this after the first superbowl, dump all of their chips into the same players for a chance of repeating. They were loud and clear at the state of the Ravens address that this will NOT be their strategy this time around. They are now setting themselves up for the future. As a Raven’s fan I honestly don’t care if we don’t repeat next year, I’d much rather set myself up for being competitive for many years to come.

  54. j0esixpack says: Mar 14, 2013 10:45 AM

    Ravenator will still boldly assert they only need Flacco on offense. For $120 million he can act as his own OL, QB and WR

    All those other guys are just not needed

  55. ottograham says: Mar 14, 2013 10:47 AM

    @captainoffense

    Until Flacco wins another championship he will be rated behind Roethlisberger. Yes I am from Pittsburgh and no I am not a fan of Roethlisberger as a person. However, he is the best quarterback in the division when healthy.

    Fun Fact: The last two times a new pope has been chosen the Pittsburgh Steelers won the superbowl that year. 1978 and 2005… Heres to Gods team?

  56. opneon says: Mar 14, 2013 10:52 AM

    IN OZ WE TRUST!

    As long as my team (Ravens) is competitive it makes life sweeter. So, how many of your teams have won a Playoff Game every year since 2008, or played in 3 AFC Championship games since then, or won a Super Bowl? No other team…period! We may be taking a step backward, but we’ll soon be taking 2 forward. So, just sit back and watch Ozzie do his thing. And it may be as late as the week before the regular season. A few years ago our starting O-line hadn’t even played one down togther – and they were one dropped Lee Evans pass away from the SB just last year. I HATE losing Boldin especially, but it’s not the end of the world…or the Ravens!

  57. sweetwillie66 says: Mar 14, 2013 10:53 AM

    captainoffense says:
    Mar 14, 2013 10:16 AM
    Best quarterback in the division (anyone who would argue this is a complete d-bag or is from Pittsburgh, and I would say those are 1 in the same), best running game in the division, best deep threat wideouts in the division, best tight ends in the division, best return game in the division, best O-line in the division = another home playoff game this season. Last I checked, offense wins championships

    Sir,
    You are an imbecile.

  58. inozwetrust says: Mar 14, 2013 10:54 AM

    The Ravens have lost so many “great players” in the past who didn’ pan out (Bart Scott, Adaleus Thomas, Ed Hartwell) I’ll miss Ellerbe but Kruger is one dimensional (can’t stop the run) Pollard is a hard hitter who couldn’t cover my mother, and while I like Boldin – he is a slot receiver who will be 33 years old next year.

    I’ll take the compensatory draft picks. Few teams draft as well as the Ravens, And Ozzie seems to find free agents that nobody else wanted (Jacoby Jones, Cory Graham)

    With the wizard of Oz at the helm, the Ravens are far from the basement in The AFC North. That spot will belong to Cleveland for the forseeable future.

  59. furious76 says: Mar 14, 2013 10:58 AM

    Give up the farm for a middle of the road QB, and you can’t put the talent around him that won the SB last year.

    Ravens == Contract Anchored by Flacco.

    I believe that Flacco’s contract will go down as one of the worst over-payment contracts in history. 20 mil a year will have Flacco cut in > 3 years. He can’t do it alone, he’s not even top 10.

  60. tsuscrumhalf says: Mar 14, 2013 11:00 AM

    All of the comments about Flacco’s contract miss one thing. He’s only 6.8 Mil against the cap this year. For the 1st 3 years, it’s a VERY cap friendly deal. Year 4 it’s a ridiculously high number & he’ll either have to renegotiate or be cut. But, these moves have NOTHING to do w/Joe’s contract this year. Sure, the 120 Mil number sounds good……but it’s not a real number. The relevant number this year is 6.8. Not bad for a SB MVP who has been in the AFCC game 3 times in 5 years.

    The Ravens D was just awful this past year until the playoffs. The loss that’ll hurt is Ellerbee. Kruger – part time player getting paid stupid $ by CLE. Ray Lewis – lost a step or more & was a liability in coverage. Pollard – big hitter but a $.01 brain & picked up PF flags too often. With Courtney Upshaw, T-Sizzle, Jameel McClain, Adrian Hamilton, Mike McAdoo, Josh Bynes, Albert McClellan and a few draft picks & maybe some inexpensive FA vets, the LB corps in Bmore is gonna be just fine. Drafted Christian Thompson at safety to take over for Pollard, have Omar Brown & Manny Cook to provide S depth. It’s a reload, not a rebuild. Younger & faster. Wish Ellerbee hadn’t gotten the big $ from Miami, that’s gonna hurt, but he’s the only loss of significance so far on D.

  61. baltimoresnativeson says: Mar 14, 2013 11:03 AM

    The Ravens have lost a lot of talent, but it seems people should have learned their lesson from doubting Ozzie Newsome by now. 2 champoinships in 17 years for a relocated team. No other modern day relocated or expansion franchise has even one 1 that fast. (Texans, Panthers, Titans,) (Colts took 21 years to win 1 after moving). It is blatantly obvious this guy knows what he is doing.

  62. steelers4385 says: Mar 14, 2013 11:05 AM

    Joey flacco sux. It took a great offensive line…top 5 RB….and boldin to bail flacco out all playoffs. Guy is not gunna lead his team like a brady or manning. I honestly think..even as a Steelers fan..browns or bengals win division this year. My team for sure is obviouslly trying to tank it this year.

  63. haywoodjablomee says: Mar 14, 2013 11:12 AM

    Got to cut players to pay your quarterback his money.

  64. baltimoresnativeson says: Mar 14, 2013 11:14 AM

    Did Flacco suck when he swept Ben?

  65. mack2x says: Mar 14, 2013 11:15 AM

    Look on the bright side Raven fans, you still have the best, I mean, highest paid QB in the League.

  66. clashpoint says: Mar 14, 2013 11:17 AM

    In every steelers thread we have to listen to ravens trolls sniveling like world champs. Its the hypocrisy that’s the worst part. So suck it up.

    One of the things that can make or break a team is how they are percieved by nfl players. One of the reasons why the steelers are usually at the top of the list of quality class organizations listed by nrl players, is that they keep their top players whenever possible and they aren’t afraid to pay them either. When they restructure a contract it usually involves giving the player a signing bonus instead of a higher yearly salary. This means players actually get their cash instead of losing when they get cut the next year. I guarantee you that the players appreciate it – as do prospective players.

    Contrast this to teams that stay 30 million under the cap. The panthers haven’t been a very good team, but they are still in the black almost as much as the entire salary cap. Imagine what other teams that don’t come close to the cap make? No wonder the owners didnt want to open up their books last bargaining. Well, who is it that we watch every sunday? Its the players, not the owners. If someone has to make the money, I say it should be the players.

    When they restricture a contract with a prorated signing bonus, the steelers actually pay more then their current cap. I guarantee you players appreciate that. They want to play for the steelers, and they say so often. At this rate the ravens will become the exact opposite of that. As a player, who would want to play for? A team that rewards you or a team thats going to dump you or let you go without paying you for the sacrifices you made for them? These questions answer themselves.

  67. cherubrock11 says: Mar 14, 2013 11:27 AM

    Kruger and Ellerbe aren’t there anymore because they got OVERPAID big time by other teams. Reed won’t be there anymore because he wants to get OVERPAID.
    Ravens are perennial contenders because they know at what price point they need to walk away from certain players.

  68. jayhit says: Mar 14, 2013 11:37 AM

    In ozzie we trust… Yeah what ever give your moderately at best qb the biggest qb contract you can release your TOP 6 tacklers of the year or lose them to free agency…. You can’t magically replace your TOP 6 tacklers from last year or 54 defensive starters…..

    If your magical OZ loses all this talent and still lets Ed Reed walk you got a big big problem ahead….

  69. Cereal says: Mar 14, 2013 11:39 AM

    Flacco is still there, he’s their best player now. They are trying to stay young & hungry…cant blame them. Especially if perennial losers want to pay their unproven guys like Pro Bowlers

  70. boogerhut says: Mar 14, 2013 11:40 AM

    Lovin’ all the Ozzie knows best comments. If they had kept Boldin it would have been “Ozzie is awesome for working the cap to keep the second most awesome offensive weapon on board”. Now it’s “Ozzie has something up his sleeve”. Relying and banking on Ozzie having some magical slight of hand hidden away is going to be funny to watch. A wild card spot (Ozzie willing. Praise be Upon Him) this season is just short of a pipe dream.

  71. inozwetrust says: Mar 14, 2013 11:47 AM

    tsuscrumhalf’s post above is required reading for those who keep bashing the Flacco contract.

    Remember – in oz we trust !!

  72. baltimoresnativeson says: Mar 14, 2013 11:52 AM

    Rings don’t lie.

  73. jamaltimore says: Mar 14, 2013 12:06 PM

    Sucks having to leave a Great Organization like the World Champion Baltimore Ravens. Ray leaving is an end of era and this is an offensive team that is looking to get young on Defense.

    I Hope Ed stays but if not close the chapter with a Superbowl win is nice and I have no doubt the Ravens will continue to win like they have for the past 17 years! OZZIE!

  74. mj1818 says: Mar 14, 2013 12:11 PM

    Ravenator what’s it like living in your moms basement at age 45? Ravens fans are nervous they just won’t admit it.

  75. blackngold4life says: Mar 14, 2013 12:15 PM

    If the Ratbirds don’t win another Ring in 3-4 years The fans will be callin for Ozzie’s head..just think if they miss the playoffs this year..its gona be ugly

  76. ravenseattheirownpoop says: Mar 14, 2013 12:22 PM

    If Ozzie is sooo smart, why is he losing all of his players? It must be a bad atmosphere because guys a RUNNING out the door!!!!

  77. bradx1975 says: Mar 14, 2013 12:26 PM

    Does anybody really think that an injury prone UDFA linebacker who has started a total of 14 NFL games is really worth 7 Million a year? Or that Kruger (who played 20 out of 60 defensive snaps in the Super Bowl) is worth what the Clowns paid him?

    Sure, it would have been great to keep them both…at the right price.

  78. starderup says: Mar 14, 2013 12:26 PM

    He is correct in that it is difficult to repeat even if you keep your core players intact.

  79. footballfan says: Mar 14, 2013 12:29 PM

    Ravenator is still drunk from the Super Bowl!!! The ravens are one and done! If the front office was so wonderful explain why it was 12 years between championships???

  80. enoughofthatalready says: Mar 14, 2013 12:32 PM

    You cannot sugarcoat the fact that the exodus is going to hurt both sides of the ball. You lose Birk and soon to lose McKinnie on the line, who both played great football in the playoffs when the line gelled together. Take out 2 pieces and the line suffers. You lose Boldin who is your KEY 3rd down guy. Jones and Smith cannot step into that role for their role is different. You lose your 2 best LBs after Ray Lewis retires and you lose your toughest DB with Reed soon to leave. The leadership on defense is completely gone. I would not be surprised to see the Ravens sign James Harrison.

  81. ampatsisahypocrite says: Mar 14, 2013 12:33 PM

    But Joe only counts 6.8 against the cap next year! So how could this be happening?

    Oh what fun it is to see Flacco’s contract destroy this team.

  82. clashpoint says: Mar 14, 2013 12:34 PM

    I wish there were a way to measure what people often call the “hometown discount.” Thats what a player will give to the team they play for on their contract, if they like playing there. It would be one way to tell what players are just in it for the money.

    It would also tell what teams/cities are considered by the players as the best places for a player to play. There would be stats for which teams lead the league in hometown discount, and those teams would be the teams/cities that players consider to be the best places to play. Those are the teams that players sacrifice the most money to play for.

    This year, the team that is finishing last in the league in hometown discount is the ravens. That would be very hard to argue with right now.

  83. barbeaux says: Mar 14, 2013 12:34 PM

    They still have flacco. The highest paid QB. Lolololol

  84. baltimoresnativeson says: Mar 14, 2013 12:37 PM

    I’ll explain why they are so wonderful since you asked so nicely……

    The Ravens have lost a lot of talent, but it seems people should have learned their lesson from doubting Ozzie Newsome by now. 2 champoinships in 17 years for a relocated team. No other modern day relocated or expansion franchise has even won 1 that fast. (Texans, Panthers, Titans,) (Colts took 21 years to win 1 after moving). It is blatantly obvious this guy knows what he is doing.

  85. baltimoresnativeson says: Mar 14, 2013 12:41 PM

    And can we please kill the one and done foolishness. How many teams have repeated in the salary cap era? Patriots, that’s it. So unless your a Patriots fan, shut the one and done talk up.

  86. wludford says: Mar 14, 2013 12:50 PM

    Surprising how fast the Ravens went from SB champs to full-fledged rebuilding mode.

  87. supaman50 says: Mar 14, 2013 12:52 PM

    If Ozzie was so smart he wouldn’t have let Jeff Ireland outsmart him and steal Ellerbe right out from under his nose.

  88. richrudelspeaks says: Mar 14, 2013 1:00 PM

    Why do I always hear Ozzie is the best GM in the league . He is good but , let’s not forget he went 13 years in between titles . Jerry Reese Giants 2 titles in 5 years as being GM . Kevin Colbert of the Steelers two since 2006 . Belicheck won 3 up in NE. Honestly I am a Giants fan and I would pick the front office up in NE as the best they are consistently good always have cap space and draft picks .

  89. hayespanther31 says: Mar 14, 2013 1:01 PM

    I don’t care how old Ed Reed is, the man is still a top safety/leader in the league. You can not replace a guy like this. Of all the changing the ravens have done, letting Reed go doesn’t make sense. Give him a 3 year deal and let him retire one of the best safeties ever.

  90. cfeeley52 says: Mar 14, 2013 1:01 PM

    blackngold4life says:
    Mar 14, 2013 12:15 PM
    If the Ratbirds don’t win another Ring in 3-4 years The fans will be callin for Ozzie’s head..just think if they miss the playoffs this year..its gona be ugly

    And just think what will happen if the steelers miss the playoffs for the THIRD year in a row…

  91. scoobies05 says: Mar 14, 2013 1:02 PM

    relax everyone. the season is 6 months away. we have a draft coming up…ravens have double digit picks. we have free agency…lots of vets looking for work and can be had cheaply. the defense was getting older..time to replace some players. all will be well with the ravens

  92. inozwetrust says: Mar 14, 2013 1:06 PM

    boohrthut

    Just calling it the way it is. Ozzie’s record speaks for itself. He doesn’t need me or anyone else to sing his praises.

    Boldin is gone because he would not take a pay cut. I would love to still have him, but not at that price. Welker got 6 million form Denver to play the slot and he averages over 100 catches a year. Boldin is not as good as Welker

  93. cfeeley52 says: Mar 14, 2013 1:09 PM

    footballfan says:
    Mar 14, 2013 12:29 PM
    Ravenator is still drunk from the Super Bowl!!! The ravens are one and done! If the front office was so wonderful explain why it was 12 years between championships???

    You must be a steelers fan… what happened to their front office when they went close to 40 years between superbowls???

    and if your not a steelers fan then tell me how many other teams have won 2 superbowls in a 12 year span? a select few

    and how many current teams have won a playoff game the past five years in a row? NONE

    Ozzie has kept the ravens in contention for 17 years, just let the man work his magic…

  94. sweetwillie66 says: Mar 14, 2013 1:09 PM

    jamaltimore says:
    Mar 14, 2013 12:06 PM
    Sucks having to leave a Great Organization like the World Champion Baltimore Ravens. Ray leaving is an end of era and this is an offensive team that is looking to get young on Defense.

    I Hope Ed stays but if not close the chapter with a Superbowl win is nice and I have no doubt the Ravens will continue to win like they have for the past 17 years! OZZIE

    Hey smartguy…7 of those 17 “winning” years did not result in winning records…Typical Ravens fan…Never let the facts get in the way of you post.

  95. ampatsisahypocrite says: Mar 14, 2013 1:12 PM

    OK, Ravens fans, serious question. Is the one ring worth it to dismantle a team that could’ve contended for a couple more the next few years?

    Fact is, Flacco’s freak playoff run and Super Bowl MVP shouldn’t have happened. Honestly. Because the end of the run should’ve been Denver. Only a miracle Hail Mary bomb let the Ravens get by.

    If the Ravens lost as they should have, Flacco gets a contract slightly north of Alex Smith — not the team-destroying richest contract ever signed in history. Crippling the team’s ability to offer 4 or 5 year deals in the next few years.

    If Flacco gets a deal based on 5 years of so-so QBing, that leaves room for the Ravens to re-sign Ellerbe (and please stop acting like that wasn’t something they desperately wanted to do). And maybe keep Boldin, who’s bailed out Flacco big time. The team can contend for Super Bowls the next few years. Instead of spending it all on Flacco.

    So Ravens fans, was the one ring worth it?

  96. goldrush4949 says: Mar 14, 2013 1:15 PM

    The Wizard of Oz has been found out to be the little man hiding behind the curtain running the offseason as an omage to the Florida Marlins.

  97. supaman50 says: Mar 14, 2013 1:15 PM

    Bradx1975 says: Does anybody really think that an injury prone UDFA linebacker who has started a total of 14 NFL games is really worth 7 Million a year? Or that Kruger (who played 20 out of 60 defensive snaps in the Super Bowl) is worth what the Clowns paid him?

    Sure, it would have been great to keep them both…at the right price.

    Just like it was worth paying a mediocre inconsistent QB $120m. LMAO. Good luck with that! He’s all yours now.

    And yes I know he only counts 6.8 against the cap this year.

  98. bradx1975 says: Mar 14, 2013 1:18 PM

    ampatsisahypocrite says:
    Mar 14, 2013 1:12 PM

    [Three paragraphs of utter nonsense]

    So Ravens fans, was the one ring worth it?

    Yes. Yes it was. Teams that pay ridiculous money to role players or 7.5 mill to 33 year old possession guys don’t usually contend for Super Bowls. [See Browns, Cleveland; Dolphins, Miami]

  99. csilojohnson says: Mar 14, 2013 1:24 PM

    The castle is crumbling. Guess another decade wait is in order.

  100. inozwetrust says: Mar 14, 2013 1:40 PM

    To all of the morons who keep talking about the Flacco contract please note the following ( I will try to use small words so you can follow along).

    1 the contract does not gurantee 120 million – only about 50 million is guaranteed

    2 the 2013 salary cap hit is 6.8 million (about the same as Boldin’s cap number would have been and far less that Suggs or Ngata)

    Flacco’s contract is not the reason that the Ravens did not sign Boldin or Kruger or Ellerbe. These guys were let go because Ozzie did not think they were worth what they were asking for. Period.

  101. durango51 says: Mar 14, 2013 3:02 PM

    hey fugly

    yeah all he wanted to do was play for his CONTRACT PRICE

  102. blackngold4life says: Mar 14, 2013 3:33 PM

    Flacco 6.8m SUGGS and Ngata about 12m each if that’s correct them 2 are the ones that need to redue their deals.. Or they are next..Noways they get paid down the road as Flaccos numbers get bigger. So Joe’s contract may not effect them too much this year but it will catch up in a year or 2

  103. ampatsisahypocrite says: Mar 14, 2013 5:19 PM

    No, “morons” are the Ravens fans here trying to act like the richest contract in NFL history will have no effect on the team at all.

    “Cap friendly”? Say WHAT? Yeah, it’s just 6.8 mil the first year, but most big contracts are low the first year out. After that, the deal immediately jumps to about 15 mil. Go do a survey and see how many other NFL players are getting that.

    And a couple years later it jumps to a number so big it’s scary… but that’s not even the point. Point is — it’s why you can’t sign guys to FIVE year deals. So Ellerbe walked. Duh.

    Look around you, Ravens fans, all over they’re joking about how Flacco’s deal wrecked the team. One ESPN guy said “Flacco better play both sides of the ball now.” And you actually think all these guys leaving have NOTHING to do with Flacco getting so overpaid? Huh?

    The deal is laughable because the team is paying for 5 years of mediocre quarterbacking and one freak playoff run, including a miracle Hail Mary heave in Denver. I’m not the one saying it, YOU are, Ravens fans — if you want I’ll show you all the press in Baltimore calling Flacco a bust after he lost to Charlie Batch this year.

    Flacco’s got a career 86 rating, which is about right for where he stands in the NFL. He’s second-tier, average. The true franchise guys rate into the mid 90s and above, for their careers. Flacco simply isn’t the guy you build your team around — but the Ravens are paying him like it. That’s why you’re screwed.

    Why do you think Ozzie said “if we do a deal with Joe, we won’t be franchising anyone.” Care to answer that? C’mon, man, quit pretending. Ozzie knows you can’t pay Flacco big and keep everyone else, or sign other FAs to big deals. It’s just not mathematically possible.

  104. edisbetterthantroy says: Mar 14, 2013 6:34 PM

    I can’t speak for the fans of the 31 runner ups. But to me, this is a good problem to have. It means you just won a Super Bowl. Players are showcased, then go and chase the money. Good for them.

    Joe isn’t the only one who is benefiting from the championship run. Outside of Baltimore, people didn’t know who Paul Kruger, Danelle Ellerbe, etc was in November? When Ngata and Suggs are on the field, they draw double teams. Next thing you know Kruger racks up double digit sacks and is a $40 million dollar man.

    Joe’s upside is much greater than the free agents the Ravens are parting with. Football meet business, business meet football. This is how it works people…

  105. ampatsisahypocrite says: Mar 14, 2013 6:42 PM

    As much as I doubt your screen name, dude, you make some valid points. But PLEASE stop pretending, some of you, that losing Ellerbe is some kind of positive all of a sudden. Especially when your own TEAM said re-upping him was a priority. And that they were shocked when he left.

    The elephant in the room is Flacco’s contract. Some will talk about it, others will avoid it. But that doesn’t change the fact that something had to be sacrificed to pay him. It’s just obvious.

  106. edisbetterthantroy says: Mar 14, 2013 10:12 PM

    I appreciate the props, @ampatsisahpocrite. I wanted Ellerbe back, but he’s a system player. Much like many other LB’s over time. Fans were disappointed when Jamie Sharper, Adalius Thomas, Ed Hartwell, Bart Scott, Jarret Johnson, etc. parted. They left Ray and the system, then never lived up to their contracts nor hype. Some instantly became irrelevant.

    I know Ravens’ critics don’t like hearing it, but Ray/Oz are the common denominator. You can also ask all the D coordinators whom also chased money and suffered similar fates.

    And I stand my ground…Raven or no Raven, Ed>Troy

  107. reedhof20 says: Mar 15, 2013 1:00 AM

    You are wrong, dude. Ozzie has always been right player at right price. Same for Ellerbe. Ozzie came in significantly lower because a. he’s missed 15 games the last 3 years and is ALWAYS hurt. 5 years is absurd for him. You NEVER heard me say Ellerbe was a priority. Boldin and Reed would have only gotten 2 year deals – actually 1 in Boldin’s case for finishing his contract – so Flacco’s acceleration definitely would not have affected resigning them. Everyone is gone for one reason: They all were weak points on the “D.” Yes, Ed Reed in 2012 had to be covered up. He couldn’t tackle, play the run, etc. Pollard couldn’t cover, Kruger couldn’t play the run, and Ellerbe couldn’t play on the field – consistently – at all. Throw that all together at once and throw it up against Peyton Manning twice, and you have an easily exploited defense to the tune of almost 70 points and 1000 yards. Flacco won the playoff game, plain and simple. Ravens will be fine – as usual – this year. They were old, it showed, and they were gashed regularly. Go look at the game stats. The Patriots couldn’t do it – but everyone else did. Time for a change.

  108. reedhof20 says: Mar 15, 2013 1:07 AM

    And yes ampatsi…
    The 1 ring was worth it. The Ravens have 2 in the modern era and the Patriots 3. Much different? I don’t think so. When was the Patriots’ last one? A decade ago? Thought so.

  109. obmig says: Mar 18, 2013 10:54 AM

    The modern era? If you look at when the Ravens titles are and say they are in the same era you are sadly mistaken. The game has changed over the past 5 years more than it had in the previous 20.

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