Baltimore has been one of the more active teams in free agency. There are three teams who have added five free agents (this does not include resigning players). There are six teams that have added four free agents. The Ravens are tied with three other teams with three free agent acquisitions. Out of all of these signings, who is the biggest winner?
On talent alone, it’s easy to argue that it would have to the Giants. They’ve added guys that NFL.com has ranked as 2, 10, and 18 (while resigning the #6 free agent). That’s tough to beat. My only issue with these moves is that the Ravens have signed three players to five year contracts with a total of $193.75 million tied up. They’ve also guaranteed a total of $93 million to those three guys.
The Ravens on the other hand have signed three rock-solid players in Wallace, Watson, and Weddle. The 3 W’s for Baltimore have cost a total of $45.5 million on three potential starters. They may not be the big names that the Giants got, but every one of them can fill a hole that the Ravens have. So, if these contacts are maxed out, the Ravens got three potential pro-bowl players for slightly more than the Giants guaranteed to Olivier Vernon alone.
The Ravens aren’t adding the best talent in free agency. Instead, they’re adding the most dependable starter at a specific position. They’re also making sure that the player the sign is a good locker room presence. The Ravens don’t have the most popular free agent class thus far, but Baltimore fans love it. And the first couple of weeks of free agency has re-established the fans’ belief in the phrase “In Ozzie we trust”.
The Ravens have done the best at negotiating the salary cap and still bringing in great talent. Baltimore’s offense now consists of two top-20 graded WR’s from 2015 (Smith and Aiken), with a deep threat (Wallace), and a highly touted young WR (Perriman). They also have three TE who graded in the top 20 in 2015, one of the league’s best QB’s, and a variety of HB that should work well together with Forsett being a great runner and Buck Allen being a great receiving back.
*All grades are provided by Profootballfocus.com