Blog Entry

Ravens will try to keep Lewis; not so McAlister

Posted on: January 21, 2009 9:38 pm

I was in Baltimore today and left with two impressions: 1) The club will try to keep linebacker Ray Lewis but will not franchise him and 2) it will not try to retain cornerback Chris McAlister. Lewis becomes a free agent in March, and owner Steve Bisciotti made it clear he wants to keep the guy. But, as he said later, it will not be a long-term deal. The Ravens believe Lewis has three to four years of football left and would like to retain him. But they will not get into a bidding war, with Bisciotti saying he hoped to get a "hometown discount" like New England gained when it re-signed Tom Brady. Trust me, the Ravens will not consider protecting Lewis with the franchise tag; if anyone gets that it will be linebacker Terrell Suggs. He, Lewis and linebacker Bart Scott all become free agents. McAlister is under contract, but both sides would welcome his departure. He didn't see eye to eye with coach John Harbaugh this season, was benched before he was put on injured reserve and was not at games or in the locker room afterward. "A good man and a good player" was how Harbaugh characterized him Wednesday. He said nothing about wanting to keep him ... which he won't. Loook for McAlister to be cut.

Category: NFL

Since: Aug 16, 2006
Posted on: January 25, 2009 8:54 pm

Ravens will try to keep Lewis; not so McAlister

There is no WAY Suggs goes for a deal as cheap or as short as your 3/20.  Personally, I'd love to get him on my Panthers to replace Julius "Every Other Game" Peppers.  He's got most of the athleticism and versatility that makes Pep good when he's trying.

Since: Jan 20, 2009
Posted on: January 21, 2009 10:16 pm

Ravens will try to keep Lewis; not so McAlister

I agree that Lewis will be kept. He's a Mike Singletary kind of linebacker who is the heart of a defense, a very smart player, and still physically strong enough to make an impact on a defense. I also agree that McAlister's time is over in Baltimore, but I think they'll trade him over cutting him. There are a number of teams looking to add a corner and a relatively shallow DB class coming out in the draft.

Suggs I'm not sold on being re-signed. Is he an impact player, definitely. But he's going to cost something on the range of 3 years/$20 million. The Ravens have been successful by letting players walk away at the right time. They could let him walk, use the money to re-sign Bart Scott, and take a LB in the draft. Rey and Maybin will probably be gone, but Laurinitis is the kind of linebacker that will thrive in the 3-4 and could player all the LB positions.

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