Eric DeCosta says Rolando McClain deserves a second chance

The Baltimore Sun

The legal problems of Ravens linebacker Rolando McClain haven't cost him his roster spot, at least not yet.

As McClain continues to deal with the aftermath of an arrest in his hometown of Decatur, Ala., on charges of disorderly conduct and resisting arrest nine days after being signed to a one-year contract with a maximum value of $1.1 million, the Ravens are allowing the process to play out in the court system.

McClain pleaded guilty to a window tint violation Monday and had a false information charge dismissed.

McClain has been involved in several off-the-field issues since the Oakland Raiders drafted him in the first round with the eighth overall pick three years ago. Since entering the NFL, McClain hasn't reprised the All-American and Butkus Award winner form he displayed at Alabama.

"I think this about McClain, he deserves a second chance," Ravens assistant general manager Eric DeCosta said during The Baltimore Sun Sports Forum when asked a general question about how McClain will fit into the locker room chemistry. "If you asked him, he would probably admit to making some mistakes. We think he warrants a second chance. Obviously, he's an Alabama guy.

"We have a relationship with a lot of Alabama players. We get a lot of good information from Alabama because of Ozzie Newsome's relationship with the school. So, we think he deserves a second chance."

DeCosta praised the Ravens' mentoring program and the leadership provided by veteran players and coaches, as well as player development officials Harry Swayne and O.J. Brigance.

"We have a program in place for every single player who comes to Baltimore," DeCosta said. "We have an  individual plan for every single player that gets mapped out before they come on campus. Some guys have different issues.

"It could be family issues. It could be academic issues, financial issues. It could be off-the-field stuff. It could be substance abuse. Just about every single player we have has something he needs help with and we could counsel him on. We have a whole bunch of people to help players."

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