Signings by the Baltimore Ravens during free-agency haven’t been marquee, but general manager Ozzie Newsome has been clearing the way for fresh, young blood. Even though Newsome will attempt to build most of the vacant spots on defense through the draft, he has helped a struggling defensive line with inexpensive veteran talent.
On Wednesday, Newsome signed former New York Giant Chris Canty, and today he has made another move to add veteran depth with recent salary cap casualties.
The Ravens have signed former Dallas Cowboys’ DE Marcus Spears to a two-year deal per Fox Sports.com’s Alex Marvez. Spears was released by the Cowboys on Thursday to clear cap space.
This signing is another example of Newsome’s “right player, right price” motto. It is no secret that the Ravens rush defense (20th overall) needs help, and Spears will add veteran leadership in an attempt to replace all of the experience that has left Owings Mills for good within the past week. While Spears isn’t a pass-rusher, only tallying 10 sacks in his eight-year tenure, he’s an excellent run-stuffer and a big presence along the Ravens defensive line.
Spears, 30, has three forced fumbles and 226 tackles in his career. The former LSU star was drafted 20th overall by the Cowboys in 2005. This past season, Spears only started six-games and accounted for 25 tackles.
The addition of Spears along with Canty shows that the Ravens front office has clear needs amongst the group despite not losing any of their players to free agency along the defensive line. This also brings up a question many have been asking – is this the end of the Terrence Cody era in Baltimore? Cody has bust written all over … well… his bust, and he hasn’t done anything to prove that he deserves the starting spot alongside Haloti Ngata.
Newsome has made it clear that he wants a new start on defense, and this recent signing proves he is serious and ready to improve.