The signing of John Beck is yet another great off-season move by Ozzie Newsome and the Ravens’ front office. He presumably will be in open competition with Troy Smith for the backup quarterback slot. Personally I don’t think Troy Smith will ever amount to more than a rushing threat from under center. He is best used in limited situations such as the en vogue “wildcat” formation and should hope to have a Seneca Wallace type career in the NFL.
This move adds to the already impressive amount of depth the Ravens have been accumulating over the winter. I think they learned their lesson from the past couple of years as injuries have really affected the team’s plans and in some ways their performance. The only other position were I think the Ravens could add more depth would be receiver because if Derrick Mason hadn’t soldiered through his injury the Ravens would not have made it to the AFC Championship last year, and we have not as of yet improved that area. Something tells me that Ozzie is probably working on that as I am writing this.
As for Beck he absolutely has promise, he was the 40th pick overall in 2007 and has 5 games of starting experience, albeit with a one win squad. If my recollection serves me I think the Ravens were highly interested in Beck that year but the Dolphins grabbed him prior to the Ravens second round selection. In any event I am certain the Ravens at least scouted him coming out of college because they seemingly scoured the globe in search of a quarterback prior to the arrival of Joe Flacco. Of course Cam Cameron is familiar with Beck having been the Dolphins’ head coach when he was drafted, and it is almost a certainty he had a hand in bringing Beck to town.
I honestly feel Beck has the ability to develop as the number two guy with no pressure. I could actually see him being a starter somewhere in the future. The problem with Beck however, is that he is going to be 28 going into this season but doesn’t have the experience to match his age due to going on a Mormon Mission. He started as a true freshman, at the ripe old age of 22, for BYU and he earned high praise during his senior season as he was a Davey O’Brien Award Finalist and was a Johnny Unitas Golden Arm Award finalist as well.
It all boils down to another great move by the astute minds in the Ravens’ front office. In Oz we trust…. Go Ravens!