Sunday, September 12, 2010

Scott and Ray Lewis are hardly bosom buddies

Bart Scott is a pretty good linebacker. He's tough, physical, dependable and he's a guy who coaches know will be on the field each and every Sunday. Of a possible 128 games played in his career Scott has suited up 125 times and he has started every possible game since Halloween Night in Pittsburgh during the 2005 season.

Scott is also solid in the community and when he's on your side he's a great guy to be around.

Now a Jet, Scott is no longer on the Ravens' side.

Lucky for him that Jets' head coach Rex Ryan vividly remembers what the "Madbacker" was able to accomplish during his first 4 games of the 2006 season in Baltimore. During those 4 games Scott had 33 tackles (8+ per game), 5 sacks, 5 passes defended and an interception. Not bad work for an undrafted Southern Illinois Saluki.

However, over the course of his next 60 regular season starts including 16 last year in New York, Scott has averaged less than 6 tackles per game with just 7 additional sacks, 13 passes defended and one more interception. That's decent production but it's hardly worthy a contract that suggests "playmaker" - one that includes $48 million over six years, $27 million during the first 3 seasons.

Bart should at least in part thank Ray Lewis for his riches.

But he won't!

Scott never liked playing in Lewis' shadow.

Back in 2007 when I hosted the Bart Scott Show, the former Raven commented often about how he and other defenders would do the dirty work and take on blockers so that Lewis could clean up and record stats. He even insinuated that Lewis would enter the pile late just to show up on film and perhaps pick up a cheap assisted tackle or three.

Apparently time apart from Lewis and Scott's fat contract have done little to tame those feelings of resent bubbling just beneath the surface.

In a recent NY Times article Greg Bishop covered Scott's migration to Baltimore and the pleasant memories he harbors for Charm City. Yet even with such fond recollections you still get the feeling that Scott believes he never got his just due as a Raven.

Both he and Lewis were free agents after the 2008 season and both were rumored to be following Ryan to the city that doesn't sleep. When the free agent period commenced on a chilly February 27th night at 12:01 am back in 2009, it was Scott's driveway that Rex Ryan pulled in to as part of the courting process to bring the linebacker to New York.

"I was always Plan A," Scott said. "That was the first time in my life I was Plan A."

Recently after Lewis chastised the Jets for "yapping" too much and talking like soon-to-be-crowned champions Scott got in another dig.

"I don't even know what he said; I just know he said something. It's just part of the show. If you listen to all his news conferences, they're pretty much the same thing. It's part of how he builds it up."

Scott's teammate Kris Jenkins dug in a bit deeper when speaking to Newsday's Bob Glauber.

"I just hope [on Monday night] he doesn't hide behind the other linebacker that's taking all the hits for him."

Hmmm, wonder who planted the seed to that thought?


Jerry B said...

Scott is another in a long list of former LBs who benefitted from playing with Ray Lewis and who have languished in relative obscurity elsewhere. Anyone heard of Adalius Thomas lately?