Ravens Rumor Mill: Orlando’s Future? Photo by Wesley Hitt/Getty Images

Lombardi's Way Ravens Rumor Mill: Orlando’s Future?

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Derek Wolfe was one of the Ravens best defenders in December and January. He embraced and then mastered his role in Wink Martindale’s defensive scheme and if not for his performance in the Wild Card game against the Titans, Lamar Jackson might still be in search of his first playoff win.

Wolfe agreed to a three-year deal for $12M, with $6.5M in Year 1, per NFL Network’s Mike Garafolo. Although the specific terms of the deal have yet to be revealed as of this writing, the guess here is that the cap hit in 2021 will be roughly $3M. Ravens GM Eric DeCosta mentioned during a recent Zoom presser that the interior defensive line position has some longevity. There’s a good chance that the 31-year-old Wolfe will play through his new contract and that’s a good thing for the Ravens and the young interior defenders that the team is likely to hire while Wolfe is employed. He is an excellent mentor.

After signing his deal, Wolfe threw some shade on Pro Football Focus.

I have to agree with Wolfe on PFF. Their grading system is flawed and somehow PFF has become a standard of performance. I once asked Eric DeCosta if the team paid any attention to PFF grades. He admitted that they do look at them but the grading system is flawed because there’s no way that those analysts providing the grades could know the assignments of each player on every play.

So, to Wolfe’s point, he could be executing what the coaching staff wants him to do on a given play flawlessly, yet through the eyes of PFF his grade gets dinged.

Tyus Returns

It’s great to see that the Ravens are bringing back Tyus Bowser on a four-year, $22M deal with $12M in guarantees. Bowser is a terrific athlete who is just 25 years old and seemingly on the cusp of coming into his own. Once again DeCosta nails a fair contract with a productive player who has upside. Of the four edge defenders that were unrestricted free agents, Bowser is the one that provides the greatest value.

ISO a Wide Receiver

The Ravens have yet to add a veteran wide receiver but that said, the market costs seem relatively reasonable to sign a vet pass catcher and I fully expect the Ravens to sign one. Who that might be, remains a mystery but patience could pay off for the Ravens and DeCosta.

Some teams still have to be cap compliant by 4PM today and that could result in some salary cap casualties that the Ravens GM could pounce on. Keep in mind that such casualties don’t factor into the comp pick equation and as we’ve seen in the past, those players are especially endearing to DeCosta.

Rumor Mill

Rodney Hudson was cut loose by the Raiders yesterday. The 31 year old, 3-time Pro Bowl center fits a need for the Ravens. The move by Jon Gruden and GM Mike Mayock is a bit curious because it doesn’t save the Raiders any cap space. In fact, their cap takes a hit to the tune of $2M. But once again, depending upon the cost to sign Hudson, the Ravens could fill a need without triggering an event that will impact the compensatory pick equation.

I wonder what the odds are at that Mayock is around this time in 2022? But I digress…

That said, if I had a choice between signing Hudson or one of the available wide receivers, cost being relatively comparable, give me that center who along with recent signing Kevin Zeitler, would REALLY solidify the Ravens offensive front.


Haason Reddick had 12 ½ sacks for the Arizona Cardinals last season. Some have wondered if the production was a fluke since he had a total of 7 ½ sacks in the previous three seasons. It’s a fair question but Reddick played out of position at inside linebacker his first 3 campaigns. Moving him outside triggered his innate explosiveness. The Ravens liked Reddick coming out of Temple in 2017 but he was snagged by Arizona with that draft’s 13th overall pick.

The Blindside

There hasn’t been much of a buzz in the way of Orlando Brown, Jr. rumors as it relates to trading partners for the Ravens. I’m hearing that the Ravens demands of a No. 1 pick and possibly more are just unrealistic, for the moment. Time and money will tell as the new league year gets underway later today. That said, I still expect him to play right tackle for the Ravens this season.

We’ve all heard OBJ’s desire to play left tackle and he understands that won’t happen in Baltimore given the presence of Ronnie Stanley. The Ravens signed Stanley to a 5-year extension worth $98.75M in new money and a total value of $112.886M, with a $22.5M Signing Bonus and $16.25M Option Bonus in 2021.

Timing is everything when it comes to contracts, particularly when you compare Stanley’s deal to the recent agreement between Trent Williams and the 49ers.

According to Adam Schefter, Williams also discussed deals with the Chiefs and the Bears. The Chiefs instead plunked down big coin to land the Patriots’ Joe Thuney, while the Bears signed Germain Ifedi.

More free agent fun on the way today.

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About Tony Lombardi

Tony is the founder and His work has been featured on various sports websites and he hosts The Russell Street Report and Armchair Quarterback both seen and heard on Fanimal Radio. Among his favorite things in life are his wife, kids, family, friends, The Beatles, Breaking Bad, Gladiator, The Godfather, Guinness, orange crushes, meatballs and Key West, not necessarily in that order. Follow Tony on Twitter @RSRLombardi. More from Tony Lombardi

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