Feb 3, 2013; New Orleans, LA, USA; Baltimore Ravens center Matt Birk (77) holds his son on his shoulders after winning Super Bowl XLVII against the San Francisco 49ers at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports
An era is officially over in baltimore. Ray Lewis is 100% retired. Ray hit the reserved/retired list today, his time with the Ravens finally coming to an end.
Obviously Ray isnt surprising anyone by retiring at this point, but the fact that he is officially on the list is noteworthy. The only real question left to be answered is whether or not Ray will have an official retirement press conference. He probably wont, but news in the NFL is about to dry up big time once the free agency rush is over and there is always the potential for someone to try and create some news by encouraging a retirement presser for Ray. We all know He doesn’t generally back away from the spotlight. We are also still waiting on the official word of Ray Lewis being on ESPN sunday and monday night countdown this fall. We have already had the president of ESPN confirm the rumors, but no one has signed a contract yet so it isn’t over until its over.
Matt Birk also hit the list today, his retirement was suspected, but wasn’t confirmed until last week when he made it official in a retirement presser. Birk, like Lewis, leaves a big hole to fill on the roster for the Ravens. They drafted Gino Gradkowski to be Birks’ eventual replacement, but we dont have a definitive idea of whether or not he is ready to be a full time starter at, what some would argue, is the most important non-QB role in the game. Lewis might be leaving a bigger hole because the Ravens are so thin at ILB right now. Their top player, Dannell Ellerbe, is a free agent and their next man, Jameel McClain, is still recovering from a serious spinal injury that ended his 2012 season early. behind that, the Ravens don’t have much to speak of.
The good news is that these two mover will save close to 7 million in cap room(6.65), That in addition to the news that the Cap will be raised by 1.5 million to 123 million this year gives the Ravens a total of 8.1 million in cap savings today. not to shabby, even if you did lose a couple of hall of famers in the process.