Sunday, May 17, 2009

Ravens fortunate that Joe Staley wasn't available on draft day '07

A player who falls off the radar screen for most observers of the Ravens is offensive tackle Joe Reitz. Reitz is a solid athlete and an accomplished basketball player. He was offered scholarships to play football by a number of MAC Conference schools and Indiana University but he opted instead to play hoops at Western Michigan where he averaged 15 points and 7.9 rebounds per game as a senior. Reitz stands at 6’7” and is clearly a project but from what we hear, he’s a worthy project in the eyes of Cam Cameron and has been referred to as a poor man’s Joe Staley. Reitz will be an interesting player to watch throughout camp.

Back to Joe Staley, Ravens officials are now said to be please that the 49ers jumped in front of them during the 2007 NFL Draft to select Staley with the No. 28 overall pick. With the 29th pick the Ravens looked to Ben Grubbs. Staley has been a huge disappointment so far for the Niners and had he still been on the board, the Ravens may have chosen him. Grubbs hasn’t exactly set the world on fire in his two seasons but there is far more optimism about his future than that of Staley.

But the real story within the story as it relates to Staley and Grubbs is this...If Staley had been the Ravens’ choice in ’07 they probably don’t go to the supplemental draft to nab Jared Gaither in the fifth round. And so far of the three, Gaither has performed the best – and it isn’t even close!


Anonymous said...

I'll remain skeptical about Joe Reitz until we see him play someone above the 4th team. If Oher is not ready to play right away and play well, tackle is going to be a scary position with Gaither's and Terry's history of nagging injuries. We're all still waiting for DeCosta to explain O'Neill Cousins and David Hale as 3rd and 4th round picks last year. Can't keep a kickoff specialist so Stover can remain, but we can carry useless draft picks on the roster to avoid front office embarrassment.

Anonymous said...

has Gaither missed any games? And considering that teams only dress six offensive linemen, why are you so quick to jump on Cousins and Halem? Don't we have a pretty good offensive line? And, let's just suppose that Oher is ready to play. What's the point of assuming he can't? The FO has been right more than wrong, especially in the 1st round. I like our line, and our depth. We've got some sick talent on this team. You and i disaggree about Decosta and Ozzie. I think they've excelled.

Anonymous said...

DeCosta and Ozzie have excelled in round 1, which in and of itself makes you a successful front office. Since Savage left, however, the rest of the draft has been between mediocre and bad each year, with very few productive undrafted free agents. While Tony has criticized every member of the Ravens organization in some context over the years (especially Ozzie), I'm waiting for the first such critical reference to his buddy, Eric.

But back to your post. I'm not assuming Oher can't play well right away. If he does, then I agree we have a solid line with some depth. However, if he's a year away, we're very thin at tackle with Willie now retired. Adam Terry has never proven he can play for any length of time without getting hurt. Gaither is a rock, but he has had a series of nagging injuries, which appear to have lasted this deep into the offseason. Lose either Terry or Gaither for any number of games, and we're in deep trouble keeping Flacco upright. That's all I was trying to say.

Tony Lombardi said...

I don't think that the criticisms directed towards me and my relationship with DeCosta are totally unwarranted...I just find it ironic and a bit humorous that they are delivered by someone who posts here anonymously.

That said, the Ravens front office with DeCosta as Dir. of College Scouting missed in a big way on Pittman (3rd), Figurs (3rd), Daniels (4th), Cody (2nd) and Terry (2nd).

Daniels and Cody can be written off due to injuries. Pittman and Figurs just aren't/weren't tough enough for the NFL. Terry was a reach for need heavily influenced by Brian Billick.

Comparatively speaking, Savage's last draft with the Ravens in 2004 included Dwan Edwards, Devard Darling, Rod Green, Derek Abney, Clarence Moore and Brian Rimpf. Nice swan song there, eh?

The Ravens are far better off with DeCosta than Savage and time will prove that out regardless of whether I like the guy or not.

John Kerry said...

Aren't they Ozzie's picks anyways? He's the GM. It's kind of like blaming Condi or Colin Powell for Bush's mistakes. And if you ARE going to criticize DeCosta for the bad picks, let's credit him for the good. It has to work both ways. Otherwise, give Newsome all the credit and all the blame.

Regardless, our team is very strong on both the offensive and defensive lines, we have a QB, a strong secondary, and a young linebacking core.

We can quibble over the Pittman's and Cody's of the world for sure but this team is built to last. I see lots of potential and a chance to compete for years to come. It's a tribute to Ozzie and Eric and Dick Cass and John Harbaugh and Steve Bisciotti that they have lost so many free-agents, coaches, and front-office execs over the years and have remained one of the top ten teams from top to bottom in the league.

Anonymous said...