The Baltimore Ravens need a middle linebacker. Former Oakland Raiders middle linebacker Rolando McClain needs a job.
Wednesday several sources reported that the Ravens agreed to terms with McClain on a one-year deal.
McClain talked to other teams, but the Ravens were considered the favorite to sign him. The two sides met Wednesday to discuss the details of the contract.
McClain will replace recently retired middle linebacker Ray Lewis; a position McClain will happily fill:
“Ray Lewis retired after winning the Super Bowl and I look to fill his slot,” McClain said. “No one can fill his shoes, but I can fill his slot. I just want to fill out the shoes of Rolando McClain. This is a perfect fit for me personally.”
McClain was the eighth overall pick in 2010 from the University of Alabama. In 2012 he had 11 starts with 37 tackles and one sack.
Athletic yes, perfect, no. He’s had some off field issues during his short career in the National Football League. He had a two-game suspension for conduct deemed detrimental to the team. He was also arrested, charged with giving a fake name to law enforcement and on assault charges.
McClain sees this as opportunity to revive his career:
“It’s a move that can’t go wrong and I’m looking forward to playing in Baltimore as the Ravens run the same or very similar defense as I was a part of at the University of Alabama,” said McClain in an exclusive interview with the Madison Weekly News.
The Ravens voluntary workouts start next week, McClain will be there.
His off field issues beg the question of whether or not he would be a good fit with the Ravens. Some may consider this a gamble, but the Ravens don’t have anything to lose. They aren’t giving up anything to acquire him and the contract is for one year, not a long-term commitment.
Since the Ravens’ locker room will be without the leadership of Ray Lewis and former safety Ed Reed; one may wonder if McClain would behave without them, I think he would be fine. I give him the benefit of the doubt and chalk up his misbehavior to being young and stupid; I can only hope he learned his lesson and will shape up or be shipped out.