It never fails, every time I go out of state for some R&R something big happens with the Ravens. This time it was the signing of Terrell Suggs to a new 6 year $63 million dollar deal, a price I think was a bit on the high side. But in the end it will free up some cap space, something the team may need to do quickly if they're going to replace their number one receiver Derrick Mason, who has said he plans on retiring. Mason has an upcoming meeting with Ravens head coach John Harbaugh to size the matter up. At this point I have to take Mason at his word and consider he may well leave the game. I know if I had his money, and with the way my body feels after a lifetime in the construction industry, I'd do it in a heartbeat, if not quicker.
If Mason does decide to call it a career all is not lost for the Ravens passing game this season. The team has already announced a tryout for former Seattle Seahawk wide receiver D.J. Hackett, who I don't think stands a chance of putting up the numbers Mason has averaged in his 4 years with the Ravens. But the likelihood of Mark Clayton and Dememtrius Williams stepping up to better their game is a promising scenario. I also want to see what second year player Marcus Smith can do with a few more rep's. This kid could become one of the great ones, but don't we always think that of young players of need. Regardless, Cam Cameron, Ozzie Newsome and John Harbaugh will make sure there are weapons for Joe Flacco to utilize, whether they be wide outs, tight ends, or runningbacks.
While I wanted to see the team sign Terrell Suggs to a long term deal, I think the team over payed for his services. His sack numbers have declined over the past few seasons as offensive coaches have found ways to seal him off. He isn't a player who is going to put his hand in the dirt for the majority of his plays, his game is coming off the edge and teams have been able to lessen his impact by double teaming him or pushing him outside. What he needs is a few lessons from Michael McCrary on the art of finding a path to the quarterback.
It's better that the possible loss of Mason, and the signing of Suggs have happened now. It gives the team more time to work out their receiving corps, and with Suggs attending all of training camp it should give him a better chance to live up to that new contract, which I believe he may if he steps up his game in proportion to his increased compensation. It's time for Suggs to become a real leader on this team and prove the Ravens made a wise decision in making him the highest paid linebacker in the league.
Maybe I should take another trip, and come back to find the Ravens have signed Anquan Boldin. It would make the end of a vacation just a bit sweeter, though I doubt my boss would give me the time off. And by the way, he's a Redskin fan, so you see what I'd have to deal with. Maybe that one isn't going to happen.