On day of return to football, Ravens getting back to business making tough decisions

July 25, 2011 | Ryan Chell

But much like Heap, Mason could be back at Owings Mills if he is willing to come back at a  cheaper rate of return.

The Ravens second cut of the day, defensive tackle Kelly Gregg, most certainly will have to return to the team at a discount, as his savings today reached in equivalent of 7.5 million dollars.

But Gregg told WNST’s Glenn Clark that while he still feels like he can play in the NFL, he holds his time in a Raven uniform-especially earning a Super Bowl ring as a member of the 2000 Ravens practice squad-in high regard.

“I had a great time in Baltimore,”  Gregg told WNST Monday afternoon. “All good things must come to an end.

“If this is it,” Gregg added,” I’ve had a great time.”

Gregg-who at 34 years of age combined with declining skills and playing time and that  high cap number-knew that his time was coming.

“When you get older, that’s the way things go,” Gregg told Glenn Clark.

The rough scenario would be to have a crowded depth chart at defensive tackle including the likes of Arthur Jones, Lamar Divens, Kelly Talavou, and 2010 2nd round pick Terrence Cody pick up the slack.

And much like Gregg, running back Willis McGahee was another one of the expected cuts by the Ravens.

Confined to a backup role to starter Ray Rice, McGahee-who came over in a trade with Buffalo in 2007, he knew his time in Baltimore given his contract situation was short-lived.

“I loved being a Raven,” the 29-year old McGahee said to WNST two weeks ago. “I liked the Ravens, but you know…my price is going to be a little ridiculous for a backup, and I know Ray [Rice] is that guy.”

The Ravens saved nearly 2.5 million in cap space by letting McGahee go, but McGahee said he holds no ill will against his friends and colleagues in Baltimore.

“I don’t regret my time I had in Baltimore,” McGahee said. “It was a great run. I had a blast.”

“The organization is great, and the team is great. The city…everything about Baltimore, I love. I don’t want to leave, but you know it’s a new chapter in my life.”

Certainly, any team looking for McGahee to be their featured back hopefully will look back to 2007 when he was the Ravens’ lead back replacing the departured Jamal Lewis, as he rushed for 1,207 yards and 7 TDs.

But after that season, McGahee’s number of carries and workload diminished thanks to Rice and Le’Ron McClain, and his relationship with both head coach John Harbaugh and offensive coordinator Cam Cameron came into question.

So much so-when asked about Cameron-McGahee said everyone on the Ravens he loved, but neglected to include his OC.

“I love my running backs coach. I love Ozzie. I love Bill [Tessendorf]. I love Mr. Bisciotti. I mean…it’s cool. It’s a business, and I understand.”

And with these four big hits to the Ravens roster, at least these guys understand what’s going on.

We’ll see if more join them-and if they are just as understanding and handle it as well as these four vets appear to be.

WNST thanks Kelly Gregg and Willis McGahee for giving us their time, as well as Todd Heap and Derrick Mason for their contributions in Ravens uniforms! Who knows-it might not be the end…WNST-We Never Stop Talking Baltimore Sports!