Flynn: ‘I’ll have a lot of avenues’

Street Talk Flynn: ‘I’ll have a lot of avenues’

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OWINGS MILLS — One year ago, it was offensive guard Edwin Mulitalo making an emotional exit from the Baltimore Ravens after several years as a fixture on the offensive line.

Now that veteran center Mike Flynn is off the roster after being cut one day prior to the free agency signing period, he won’t be shocked if Pro Bowl offensive tackle Jonathan Ogden decides to retire at some point this spring.

Ogden has been pondering retirement and recently said he was leaning toward not returning due to the continued pain of a lingering turf toe injury. Flynn emphasized that he wasn’t speaking for Ogden, just offering an informed opinion on the 10-time Pro Bowl selection.

"I know last year when they released Edwin it was tough on me, and I know Jonathan felt that way about Edwin, too," Flynn said in a telephone interview from his home in Boca Raton, Fla. "For Jonathan with a new coaching staff and a new system, at this point in his life and in his football career, he really can’t accomplish anymore than he’s already done. Sometimes, that’s when the gas tank goes on E. He’s going to be the best tackle to ever play the game. What else is there for him to accomplish?"

Meanwhile, Flynn expressed confidence that Jason Brown and Chris Chester, the top candidates to replace him, are up to the task.

Brown has established himself at left guard, but has experience at center and was an All-ACC selection at that position at North Carolina. Chester is a former second-round pick from Oklahoma who was unable to unseat Flynn during training camp last year.

"They’ve both got a lot of talent, they’re good guys and they’re smart individuals," Flynn said. "I kept the seat warm for them and they’ll do a good job. That’s the cycle. I remember when I was a young guy taking over. That’s the way it works. They’re young and they have to build on what they’ve already done."

Flynn said he was unsure of his plans, but said he would like to continue playing.

It wouldn’t be a surprise if the Detroit Lions, where Mulitalo plays and former Ravens offensive line coach Jim Colletto is the offensive coordinator, could display interest in Flynn.

"I’m not in a rush," Flynn said. "Right now, I’m going to definitely take some time to relax and smell the roses. I’ll always look back and be proud of the fact that I played hard and gave everything I could during my time in Baltimore.

"When I talk to close friends and family, they always put it in perspective. I’ve gone further than a lot of guys who have tried to make it in the NFL. I have no complaints."

If he never plays in another NFL game, Flynn said he’s prepared for life after football.

He said he has invested wisely and is involved with former Ravens lineman Spencer Folau’s Alumni Management Group, a business tailored to help former and current players’ transition into the business world.

"You realize it’s not going to last forever," Flynn said. "I’ve been around long enough to see what happens with guys who aren’t prepared. I’ve taken steps for life after football working with Spencer Folau. We’re trying to help former players with finances and disability, which is something I’ll probably need one day. I’ll have a lot of avenues."

NOTES: The agent for long snapper Matt Katula confirmed that Katula received a $927,000 low restricted tender from the Ravens. … Scott Smith, who also represents Baltimore unrestricted free agent safety Gerome Sapp, said he hasn’t heard from the Ravens yet. "Gerome would obviously like to be back in Baltimore, but he’s a free agent so he needs to look around," Smith said. "We’ll go beat the bushes and see what’s out there for Gerome." … As expected, the Ravens, who have a tight salary-cap situation, didn’t join in the major spending spree that ensued around the league.

Aaron Wilson covers the Baltimore Ravens for the Carroll County Times and the Annapolis Capital.

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Aaron Wilson

About Aaron Wilson

Aaron Wilson covers the NFL for National Football Post as well as the Baltimore Ravens for The Carroll County Times and He has previously covered the Jacksonville Jaguars and Tennessee Titans and has covered the NFL since 1997.  He has won several regional writing awards, including, most recently, Best Sports News Story for the state of Maryland in voting conducted by the Associated Press managing editors. 

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