How Many Quarterbacks Is Too Many?



That’s how many quarterbacks the Baltimore Ravens have on their current roster.

Current third stringer, John Beck was pulled from Thursday night’s pre-season game with an injury. It was reported that Beck had broken his collarbone but that may not be the case as Coach Harbaugh indicated that Beck would not require surgery. Beck has been in uniform at practice but hasn’t been throwing.

So the Ravens decided to not only bring back recently waived undrafted rookie Drew Willy but also a player that Baltimore fans are very familiar with, Cleo Lemon.

Lemon is a six year vet most recently of the Jacksonville Jaguars, who had signed with Baltimore in 2002 but did not make the squad. He’s also the man responsible for engineering the Dolphins lone win of 2007 and helping run Brian Billick out of a job.

He’s another player that has experience and knows Cameron’s system, so the move isn’t a bad one in terms of depth.

But it does have a lot of people thinking. Was this just a case of the Ravens brass jumping the gun a little too soon in regards to replacing Beck or is there some other reason.

Let the speculation begin as recently, Mike Preston of the Baltimore Sun posted this from today’s practice.

It’s juicy rumor time, because this is the time in preseason when you hear all the good stuff. In the last week, I’ve heard about the Ravens being serious players for Michael Vick, but the Ravens said no.

I’ve also heard the Ravens are interested in trading for Denver receiver Brandon Marshall. Two names mentioned as possible trades from Baltimore are quarterback Troy Smith and/or receiver Demetrius Williams, and/or possibly a second round pick. A lot of the speculation stems from the Ravens having five quarterbacks in training camp and that could mean a possible trade.

When you get to the second game of the preseason, it all starts to heat up. Ideally, you want the players who will make the roster in to play the second and third preseason game, and have the option of playing them in game 4. I suspect the Ravens are pouring over the list of available receivers, but it’s hard to gauge the interest at this time. What’s intriguing, though, are the rumors. By next week, it’s really going to get heavy.

Hmm. Could Baltimore be working up a package that might include Troy Smith, Demetrius Williams and a second round pick for Broncos Wide-out Brandon Marshall?

I caution that this is still speculation but some of the pieces in this trade make sense.

To say that Kyle Orton had a rough first outing as the Denver signal caller would be a gross understatement. Troy Smith looked good in his first preseason game. But, barring injury this is Joe Flacco’s team for the long haul and with Smith’s contract up at the end of 2009 he’ll go on the market looking to compete for a starting job.

Williams has vast potential but needs to shake the injury label that has stunted his development. He also has looked better in this year’s camp and appears fit.

Ozzie doesn’t like parting with first round draft choices and why would he when he has such a track record of grabbing Hall of Famers with them. But he could part with the above players and add an extremely potent weapon in the process. You just have to wonder if Denver is fed up enough to bite?

I do realize that this could all just be another example of a reporter just putting a few thoughts down on the page to gather interest. But, Mr. Preston may be on to something here and its worth following.

I guess I won’t have to wait too long to weigh in on weather it makes sense to take a gambleĀ  on another player with a questionable past. Marshall has been talked about on Baltimore Sports talk shows and blogs for at least the past five months and many people feel he might be the final piece the Ravens need to be a true Super Bowl contender.

So for now, we wait and watch.

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