Unclaimed on waivers, Mark Ingram can now sign with a playoff team

Cincinnati Bengals v Baltimore Ravens
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We’re gathering more information regarding the unconventional decision of the Baltimore Ravens to waive multiple players in the aftermath of their postseason-ending loss to the Bills.

As previously explained, any player claimed on waivers now won’t officially join his new team until after the Super Bowl. If, however, the player passes through waivers unclaimed, he immediately becomes a free agent.

That provision allowed cornerback Tramon Williams, waived earlier this week by the Ravens and unclaimed, to sign with the Packers. If also will allow running back Mark Ingram to sign with one of the remaining teams, now that he has cleared waivers.

A team could have claimed Ingram on waivers simply to keep him from, for example, the Bills. That happened in 2002, when Washington waived Deion Sanders from the reserve/retired list so that he could sign with the Raiders for the Super Bowl run. The Chargers claimed Sanders on waivers, a vindictive move by former Washington coach Marty Schottenheimer, whose hiring in Washington eventually prompted Sanders to retire.

It’s the kind of move that likely would have been met with frustration by Ingram, who presumably wants to pursue his first NFL championship. It also could turn other players off to the team that does it.

As to the Ravens, they waived these players for the opposite reason. By giving the players a shot at landing with another team following Baltimore’s exit from the postseason instead of squatting on them until after the Super Bowl, the Ravens have scored points with other players who may be thinking about joining the Ravens in the future.

As to Ingram, because he cleared waivers he can now be signed by one of the remaining teams.