Random Notes 5/25/02

<p>It may have been a surprise to some to see Jason Brookins let go this week. Brookins showed some flashes of ability last year, breaking tackles, and churning out yards up the middle. However, Brookins had been on thin ice with the organization for a while now. <p>His inability to pick up the blitz, finish off runs, hesitate at the line of scrimmage, and pick the wrong hole to run through turned the team off.

To make matters worse, Brookins didn't seem to improve upon those weaknesses in his game. He showed up at camp making promises he couldn't keep, and was at least 25 pounds overweight. Not only was the added weight slowing him down, but it was also making it tougher for Brookins to literally stay on his feet. While trying to make sharp cuts and run routes, Brookins slipped repeatedly. 

The real indication of how much the Ravens were ready to move on without him was when they openly talked about wanting to draft a running back with one of their first three picks in the draft. If the team had any level of confidence in Brookins, they would have openly backed him as their main backup, and wouldn't have revealed their intentions to draft another tailback to take his place in the lineup.

Despite not using a high draft choice on a running back, the team still added rookie backs Tellis Redmond, Chester Taylor, and Damien Hunter. All three players have been impressive to say the least during the last two-preseason camps. The Ravens have also been impressed with the performance of second-year running back Derek Homer thus far. Homer was allocated to Europe, where he is playing with the F.C. Barcelona Dragons.

With that said, the Ravens will still look to bring in one more veteran tailback before training camp starts in July…

The Roman Oben saga concluded on Monday, with Oben signing with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers to compete for the starting right tackle position. There are some reports that are suggesting that Oben backed out on a verbal agreement he had made with the Baltimore Ravens just before signing with the Bucs. This may or may not be true, considering there was only one source that leaked the story.

The Ravens were very firm in their stance that they weren't going to pay Oben more than the veteran minimum. They also made no promise to Oben that he would be given the starting right tackle position. Oben is definitely not someone the Ravens necessarily wanted to start, but he's a player that could have filled in incase they couldn't find someone better. Even if they had reached an agreement with Oben, the Ravens would have still considered moving Mulitalo to right tackle, or they would have signed one more free-agent tackle after June…

Sam Gash could very well be the next Raven to re-sign with the team. Gash and the Ravens have been involved in negotiations all week long, and the Ravens apparently feel fairly confident that they can bring him back. 

Gash, has been a vital cog in the Ravens' rushing attack. Although he rarely carries the ball, or is used as a receiver out of the backfield, Gash's blocking abilities are unmatched.


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