Okay, I Will Ask It ….. Could Chris McAlister Help The Ravens ???

September 21, 2009 |

Okay, I’ll Ask It ….. Would You Call Chris McAlister ???

You didn’t think the next 24 hours would just quietly pass by without hearing this question, did you?

In fact, if you anxiously watched the Ravens secondary trailing and swatting at San Diego’s receivers ALL DAMN DAY, the proposition of welcoming a player with McAlister’s abilities shouldn’t seem too unreasonable.

You know – I know and everybody with a novel interest in Ravens football knows the Ravens cornerbacks are undersized and, at times, clearly overmatched. McAlister is a full couple inches taller than any cornerback currently wearing a Ravens uniform.

Exhibit #1 – Floyd vs. Foxworth

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And, even at 32 years old, McAlister is arguably better than some of those same guys.

I’m not writing this with some warped interest in yielding a pile of responses – especially from readers who’ll think I’m just trying to sensationalize a topic, with an insane proposition.

Is it really that insane?  Why, because he has an awful attitude?  That’s John Harbaugh’s problem – not yours, nor mine.  And, even if he hasn’t been on the field in a year, I’m tempted to say McAlister could stand out among the Ravens cache’ of corners.

Indeed, I realize Chris McAlister is not the same hawking defender quarterbacks avoided just a few seasons ago. If he was still THAT GUY, he’d have a job right now. That’s right, malcontents and instigators still have jobs, if their talent is worth the trouble and risk.

Terrell Owens was in uniform this week …..

Brandon Marshall was in uniform this week …..

You get the picture, right? I’m not suggesting Chris McAlister possesses the abilities of Cortland Finnegan, Nnamdi Asomugha or even the aging Champ Bailey – who is just one year younger than the former Raven. If he still guaranteed such skills, McAlister would’ve been on an NFL field, this week, too.

Teams are willing to take risks. Teams are willing to tolerate childish behavior. Teams are willing to pacify selfish personalities ….. if the player who demands such high maintenance is worth it.

At this point, either all 32 NFL teams agree Chris McAlister doesn’t merit a tolerance for the headaches and strife he’s likely to cause, or a contending team hasn’t reached a point of such desperation, YET.

Are the Ravens likely to be that team?

Again, I’m not stirring the drink …..

I watched the Ravens luckily hold onto a 5 point win, over the Chargers. And, lets be honest, this win was equally attributable to whoever called San Diego’s final couple plays, as it was to Willis McGahee, Ray Rice and Ray Lewis’ game winning hit.

We saw it – Philip Rivers had his cleat firmly pressed against the throats of the fallen Ravens secondary, and Norv Turner made him lift it off.   For whatever reason, Turner went conservative when it mattered most.

Exhibit #2 – Gates vs. Carr

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Be assured, regardless of whatever we saw in the Meadowlands yesterday, Bill Belichick, Tom Brady and their Patriots will not lack a killer instinct when it matters most. The same can be said for Peyton Manning, Ben Roethlisberger, Brett Favre, Aaron Rodgers, Jay Cutler and Carson Palmer, if they have the chance.

I’m not sitting at this computer imploring the Ravens to sign Chris McAlister. I don’t know NFL talent, with real expertise. In fact, I’ll go so far as saying most media-types possess nothing more than informed opinions, with the benefit of a forum for expressing them.

Yep, the day of the investigative reporter is waning. We’re all basically on equal ground, with our opinions.

Yet, I think such opinions are conclusively accurate in surmising the likes of Domonique Foxworth, Fabian Washington, Frank Walker, Chris Carr and Ladarius Webb will not collectively keep receivers from getting open ….. WIDE OPEN.

Exhibit #3 – Jackson vs. Foxworth

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While the San Diego Chargers have a cohesive and formidable quarterback/wide receiver battery, the Ravens will see better units. Just wait a couple weeks …..

While bringing Chris McAlister back into the Baltimore Ravens organization would cause momentous glee with the likes of Anita Marks, its well beyond my scope of insight to suggest it would be a productive move.

But, it’s absolutely worth discussing.

In reality, only a handful of people know whether Chris McAlister could help this Ravens team. And, the same braintrust, itself, cannot really guarantee he WOULD help the team. Yep, there is a distinct difference between the potential of “could” and the promise of “would.”

It’s reasonable to say if Chris McAlister wanted to re-join the Ravens, he should’ve done things a whole lot differently over the past 12 months – even after he was released. An old boss once told me, “You’re not dead …. ‘til you’re DEAD.”

Catch my drift?

I don’t know, maybe Chris McAlister will be camping out on Ozzie Newsome’s doorstep, tonight. Perhaps, he’ll call John Harbaugh until he answers. There’s always a chance a guy finally gets IT.

Could that guy be Chris McAlister?

For months, the Ravens have denied any interest in their former star cornerback. John Harbaugh addressed it, directly, last week. The answer was a definitive “NO.”

However, that was before his team went to San Diego and revealed its true weakness for the ENTIRE FOOTBALL WORLD to see – the Ravens cannot cover legitimate NFL wide receivers. Is there a softer way to put it?

You don’t think Belichick & Brady will be looking at the Chargers attack when they’re preparing for the Ravens, next week?  The Patriots have a more lethal group of receivers – and no matter what happened yesterday, Tom Brady will pick a secondary apart – given the chance.

And, God knows the Ravens rushing attack is giving the quarterback that chance …..

Many listeners and readers will think the proposition of Chris McAlister is beyond a crazy suggestion. Fair enough.

Heck, for the umpteenth time, I’m not saying McAlister is the answer. I just think the current corps of pass defenders is not the answer either. And, after next week’s cakewalk against the Cleveland Browns, we’re gonna find out – BIG TIME.

God save ‘em, ’cause Norv Turner won’t ….. at least, until the playoffs

Exhibit #4 – Jackson vs. EVERYBODY

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Exhibit #5 – Chambers vs. Ayanbedego & Carr

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