Asomugha or Ngata?


The last few weeks I have given my opinion on the labor lockout and what should be done to get a deal done to ensure football week 1. However, today I turn my attention to free agency.

The Ravens have been rumored to go after Raiders cornerback Namdi Asomugha . I can see why people would want him in purple and black against the Pittsburgh Steelers week 1. He’s a shutdown, physical corner who can match up against anybody’s number one receiver and take them out of the game. So why don’t I think he’s a good fit? Well, Because there is a salary cap.

The salary cap prohibits a team from stocking up on great players (who of course cost a lot of money) and forces a team to build through the draft. The Ravens have been one of the best teams in the league at drafting great players and keeping them. They have added small pieces via free agency and rarely make big splashes. They need to keep the money that would go to Asomugha and sign Haloti Ngata long-term. Ngata is a player that affects the interior line so much that he can play nose tackle or defensive end, and even lines up at linebacker on some packages.

The Ravens just drafted Jimmy Smith out of Colorado. Smith is a big, physical corner in his own right who will not cost nearly as much as Asomugha. Remember, the Ravens will get Domonique Foxworth back this season, too. If they keep Josh Wilson, another free agent, then they have four or five nice corners that they can put in the secondary with Ed Reed. Lardarius Webb is a nice corner, but he is more of a nickel corner, not one who can match up with the bigger receivers in today’s game.

If the Ravens do sign Asomugha, it wouldn’t be the worst thing. But I am hoping that they in turn can sign the other small pieces of the puzzle that they’ll need for the 2011 season and beyond because they are the little details that will make the difference in games.

What do you think? Should the Ravens sign Asomugha or just go with what they’ve got?