Various thoughts on various things, all in 50 words or less:
It was surprising, but quite instructive, to hear GM Eric DeCosta say this week that the Ravens probably spend more time discussing the character and personalities of potential additions than those players' actual abilities. That wasn't always so, but the Ravens have learned the hard way how important it is.
It was also refreshing to hear DeCosta say he'd "made some mistakes" recently in terms of adding players who fit into the Ravens' culture. That may be true, but they've had far more hits than misses, and fans should appreciate, not take for granted, the show of organizational accountability.
The eight-percent drop in the 2021 salary cap definitely comes with advantages and disadvantages. The Ravens will have a harder time retaining their pending free agents. But the lower cap has upped both the quantity and quality of players suddenly available after being cut by their teams over cap concerns.
I'm skeptical of the suggestion that the Ravens won't attract free agent receivers because they run the ball so much. Maybe some feel that way. But I'm guessing there are also some who'll happily settle for getting paid to be one of Lamar Jackson's primary targets on a playoff-caliber team.
There are plenty of reasons why Gus Edwards is the ideal candidate for a contract extension. In addition to his being a tough-nosed runner and consistent producer, he is durable. He has played in 47 straight regular-season and postseason games since being elevated from the practice squad in October 2018.
Right after the 2018 draft, no one would have predicted that Edwards, who went unselected, would produce nearly as many yards in his first three seasons as Saquon Barkley, who went No. 2 overall. Edwards has 2,152 career yards. Barkley has 2,344 after missing most of 2020 with an injury.
I'm sure the Ravens are quite excited about receiving a third-round compensatory draft pick for sending a minatory candidate (David Culley) to another team as head coach or GM. And they might be even more excited about getting another third-round compensatory pick for the move in 2022.
You'll need more than one hand to count the defensive linemen the Ravens have drafted since 2015 who are no longer in Baltimore. (Spoiler: It's six.) Having seen how expensive it is to fill in, the Ravens surely are going to want to continue to take swings on young D-linemen.
I really like the Ravens' "spot and choose" rule proposal because it prioritizes coaching strategy and decision-making over luck in deciding overtime. I'll be interested to see how many other teams support what is a pretty "out there" concept as these things go in the NFL.