Sign or decline: QB Marc Bulger

As the lockout continues, Ravens Insider wants your opinion on what the team should do with their own pending free agents. This blog takes a look at backup quarterback Marc Bulger. Should the Ravens sign or decline?

PROS: Bulger is not just one of the top backups in the NFL. He could have started for a handful of teams last season. That’s a valuable insurance policy for any team eyeing the Super Bowl. The front office, the coaching staff, and most importantly, the players wouldn’t blink if Bulger had to fill in for Joe Flacco. A Pro Bowl quarterback in 2003 and 2006, Bulger has a strong arm, a quick release and years of experience (including three playoff games).

CONS: Having this type of luxury can be pricey. He signed a one-year, $3.8 million contract with the Ravens last season in an uncapped year. Giving him that money with a salary cap has consequences. If you put that type of money into a backup quarterback, you have to take it away from other backup spots. The Ravens might have to go cheaper, younger and less experienced at linebacker or the offensive line.

OUTLOOK: The Ravens probably will try to keep Bulger because rookie Tyrod Taylor can’t be the backup and the other viable alternatives (Bruce Gradkowski, Alex Smith and Shaun Hill) are a significant downgrade from Bulger. Trying to sign the likes of Donovan McNabb (who is still under contract) or Matt Hasselbeck is a pipe dream. So, it really boils down to Bulger’s decision: Is he content at staying a backup for a playoff team or does he want to start elsewhere?

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