Thursday, April 16, 2009

2009 Draft could signal the end for Heap and McGahee in Baltimore

The Ravens are very comfortable with the 26th pick in the draft and they are supremely confident that a player will fall to them who will be a productive contributor from Day 1. I’ve been told that the club sees very little separation in ability from the 10th player on their board to the 30th player. The added value in that of course is that the Ravens don’t have to pay their first pick as much money as the 15 picks preceding them given the league’s obsolete slotting system.

With that in mind, don’t be shocked to see the Ravens trade back if they are offered a sweetheart deal by another club. You may recall that the Ravens traded away an early round 2 pick in 1999 to the Atlanta Falcons for their No. 1 in 2000 which eventually became the fifth pick in the draft, Jamal Lewis.

While on the subject of running backs, it would not surprise me to see the Ravens take a running back in the second round. While most believe a new collective bargaining agreement (“CBA”) will happen before the 2010 season, if that falls through next year will be a cap free season meaning the Ravens could dump Willis McGahee and his salary without negative cap implications. Word is that if the Ravens were entering the 2009 season as a cap free campaign, McGahee’s bags would be packed faster than you can say “missed voluntary work outs.”

Brandon Pettigrew visited the Ravens recently and rumor has it that the team likes the draft’s most complete tight end from OK State. Initially most thought that the Ravens would have virtually no chance to draft Pettigrew at No. 26 but after poor 40 times during the combines, some have him falling to the Ravens and beyond.

If the Ravens call Pettigrew’s card, might that signal the end for Todd Heap?