Pitta Avoided Legal Standoff, Details On McClain Trade


Feb 3, 2013; New Orleans, LA, USA; Baltimore Ravens tight end Dennis Pitta (88) avoids a tackle in the third quarter against the San Francisco 49ers in Super Bowl XLVII at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome. Mandatory Credit: Robert Deutsch-USA TODAY Sports

Welcome to lunchtime links, where we round up all the latest Ravens news from around the web for your consumption. Today we bring you the details on how Dennis Pitta avoided the legal battle that Jimmy Graham is involved in, the details on the Rolando McClain trade, and Haloti Ngata’s goals for the upcoming season.

If you haven’t heard, a certain Saints tight end named Jimmy Graham lost his case to receive franchise tag compensation as a wide receiver yesterday.  Dennis Pitta was considering going the same route when negotiations on his new contract stalled back in February, but ultimately the Ravens got a deal done with a 5 year, $32 million dollar contract.

Pitta, like Graham, in one of many new wave type tight ends in the league who are utilized heavily in the passing game. In fact, Pitta lined up in the slot on 79.7% of his snaps last year.  The whole debate over tight end franchise compensation is sure to bring some sort of changes, which we believe will result in an increase in tag value for the position.

The Rolando McClain trade to the Cowboys surprised a lot of people, mainly because we had basically forgotten about him after he has retired twice already.  It’s a worthwhile risk for the Cowboys, who as it turns out are giving up almost nothing. According to Todd Archer at ESPN, the Cowboys will owe the Ravens nothing if McClain doesn’t make the team, is not on the roster for five games, or is inactive for three games during the season.

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If those conditions are met, the Cowboys will give up their seventh round pick in 2016 if their pick is better than the Ravens.  If McClain plays at least 50% of the snaps in 2014, the Ravens would receive the Cowboy’s sixth round pick in 2016 and they would give up their seventh round pick.  While this is obviously very little compensation, credit Ozzie Newsome for getting something out of nothing.

ESPN’s Jamison Hensley is reporting that Haloti Ngata is aiming for a double digit sack season.  It’s nice to see the big man motivated this year, and he feels confident that losing body fat will help his durability.  He will certainly need it to reach his goal.

ESPN also ran a poll ranking the best quarterbacks in the NFL, and Joe Flacco came in at number 12.  Flacco came in as a tier 2 quarterback with the likes of Eli Manning, Matt Ryan, and Tony Romo.  He did rank above QB’s like Jay Cutler and Alex Smith.

Where would you rank Joe Flacco among the NFL’s quarterbacks?  Are you happy with the compensation the Ravens are getting for Rolando McClain?