Baltimore Ravens: Top 15 free agent signings of all-time

Steve Smith Sr., Baltimore Ravens. (Photo by John Grieshop/Getty Images)
Steve Smith Sr., Baltimore Ravens. (Photo by John Grieshop/Getty Images) /
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Rod Woodson, Baltimore Ravens
Rod Woodson, Baltimore Ravens. Mandatory Credit: Andy Lyons/Getty Images /

. FS. (1998-01). Rod Woodson. 11. player. 26

Rod Woodson made a name for himself as one of the greatest Pittsburgh Steelers of all-time. That being said, he won his only Super Bowl ring in Baltimore. Woodson was a key part of the history-making 2000 defense. Woodson was a great player and a very valuable leader for the Ravens.

While Ray Lewis was a leader from day one, veteran guidance from Woodson was very beneficial. By the time Woodson arrived in Baltimore in 1998, he had already seen everything the NFL had to offer. Woodson, whose football intellect was second to none, was like a coach on the field.

In his first year as a Raven, he had six interceptions and scored two defensive touchdowns. He proved early on that he had a lot of good football in front of him. General manager Ozzie Newsome made the right call in free agency.

Woodson had 20 of his 71 career interceptions wearing purple and black. If you want to put how impressive of a player Woodson was in perspective, he finished his career with seven more interceptions than Ed Reed would have in his career. Woodson, a member of the Pro Football Hall of Fame, was a legend before, during and after his time with the Ravens.

Woodson was the only starter on the Super Bowl XXXV secondary that wasn’t drafted by Baltimore. Chris McAlister and Duane Starks were top-10 picks taken in back-to-back years. Kim Herring was drafted in 1997.

Woodson was the last piece the Ravens secondary needed. The Ravens defense was great for a lot of reasons, but Woodson’s contribution should not be overlooked. Woodson to the Ravens was one of the best free agent signings of all-time.