Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Winning teams experience offseason losses

Successful teams experience losses in the offseason. Free agents will command more money on the heels of a winning campaign and they will oftentimes parlay such winnings into a lucrative contract. The same is true of assistant coaches.

Undoubtedly Rex Ryan will be in the mix of candidates being considered for coaching vacancies. Just as certainly, Ryan will have to address a lingering question that hangs over his head like a dark cloud: “Why did the team with which you’ve had so much success and a team that knows you best, pass on you as a head coach?”

Ryan obtaining one of those vacancies will hinge on his ability to convincingly address that question. If he doesn’t, he may be on the Ravens’ sideline for quite some time. If he does, there’s a very good chance that the Ravens will hand Ryan’s job over to Linebackers Coach Greg Mattison.

Attrition doesn’t just affect the coaches’ and players’ ranks. It might also extend to the front office. General Managers have also taken tumbles in ’08 with current vacancies in Cleveland, Kansas City, Jacksonville and Detroit. Owners of those clubs will probably have Eric DeCosta’s number in their cell phone book soon if not already.

Some believe that DeCosta has the inside track to be the heir apparent to Ozzie Newsome. The question is does DeCosta have the patience to wait? Now that it appears that the Ravens have finally found a franchise quarterback, it could keep Newsome around much longer than expected and that could make overtures from other teams more appealing to DeCosta. Here’s another related thought to ponder…DeCosta is from the Boston area and given the recent rumors tying the Patriots’ GM Scott Pioli to Cleveland, might that open up the New England gig for DeCosta? It could but then again if the job were all that, why would Pioli bail to the Staph Infection capital of the world? Is working for Bill Belichick that unappealing?

As you know Cleveland just let Phil Savage go and quietly that has to provide some relief to Ozzie Newsome. Savage would certainly have to consider Rex Ryan to replace Romeo “Where art thou” Crennel. And is there any doubt that if nothing else Savage would drive up the prices to keep Ravens’ free agent LB’s Ray Lewis, Bart Scott and Terrell Suggs?

You may recall that Scott was heavily courted three years ago by the Browns and ultimately took less to stay with the Ravens. Scott once told me that he really never seriously considered Cleveland saying, “I just went up there for a free steak.”


Harryos29 said...

Harry O 29 Dec 30th
...I wish Rex and Eric all the luck in the world, but If I had my "druthers" , I'd want them to have all of their good fortune in Baltimore. Having changed jobs many times during my 40 year working career in The computer field, here is a peice of advice for all of these gentlemen. THE GRASS ISN'T ALWAYS GREENER ON THE OTHER SIDE OF THE STREET

Jerry B said...

I sincerely hope that the Ravens find a way to keep Ray Lewis in the fold for his entire career. He has been and continues to be a player for the ages who has literally been the face of this franchise since its inception. Remembering how the great Johnny Unitas finished his storied career in ignominity in San Diego only reinforces my conviction that Ray, like J.O. before him, should retire a Raven. He deserves it and so do the the team, the city and the fans!