Unless the Ravens change their scheme or make a major addition, fourth-year linebacker Courtney Upshaw stands to gain the most from star pass rusher Terrell Suggs' season-ending Achilles tendon tear. Also, expect Crockett Gillmore to contribute on Sunday.
Now that former Ravens outside linebacker Pernell McPhee has officially joined the Chicago Bears on a five-year deal worth nearly $40 million, the veteran pass rusher intends to provide an intimidation factor to his new football team.
Annually lacking the salary cap space to make major outside additions and content to reward their own players while building through the draft, the Ravens traditionally stay quiet through the first couple days of free agency when money changes hands at an eye-popping rate.
On Thursday at the annual State of the Ravens address, Steve Bisciotti, seated alongside Ravens president Dick Cass, general manager Ozzie Newsome and head coach John Harbaugh, was relaxed, introspective and clearly excited about the future of the organization.
As the Ravens (9-6) square off with the Cleveland Browns (7-8) in a regular-season finale Sunday at M&T Bank Stadium, here's Baltimore Sun reporter Aaron Wilson¿s checklist of things to keep an eye on:
Three weeks after receiving a kidney transplant from his brother, a former Ravens' player, Chris Kemoeatu has heard all of the wisecracks. "Everyone jokes about me having a Ravens' kidney," he says. His brother, Ma'ake, gave it to him.
The conditioning test that retired middle linebacker Rolando McClain was unable to complete during an unsuccessful workout for team officials Tuesday at the Ravens' training complex consists of six timed interval runs.
No team has been awarded more compensatory picks than the Ravens, who have shown that they are able to identify talent in the draft and unafraid to let talented but costly contributors leave in free agency.
Free agency will start in a little over a month, but two things have become apparent: it's going to be tough for the Ravens to upgrade at center and the Ravens are in line to lose several defensive free agents.
When the Ravens signed Corey Graham to a two-year, $4.204 million contract two years ago that included a $1.2 million signing bonus, they promised him a shot at a role beyond special teams. Two years later, the former Chicago Bears Pro Bowl special-teams ace has emerged as a valuable nickel back and spot starter whom the Ravens would like to retain as an unrestricted free agent.
Although Dumervil definitely didn't come cheaply, signing a five-year, $26 million contract in March, an argument can be made that he's proven to be a wise investment.Especially compared to an alternative the Ravens avoided.