The Baltimore Ravens and former Oakland Raiders safety Michael Huff have agreed in principle on a three-year deal.
The Ravens' official Twitter account shared the news on Wednesday:
#Ravens have a 3-year agreement in principle with safety Michael Huff.— Baltimore Ravens (@Ravens) March 27, 2013
Huff, the No. 7 pick in the 2006 NFL draft, has played with the Raiders for his entire seven-year career, but the team released him last week. He posted 56 tackles, two interceptions, 13 pass deflections and two tackles for loss in 16 games in 2012.
The world champion Ravens, of course, just lost veteran and nine-time Pro Bowler Ed Reed, who signed with the Houston Texans this offseason.
Reed's shoes are tough to fill, but the addition of Huff is a good place to start, as Pro Football Focus tweeted on Wednesday:
Huff is no Ed Reed, but he does make sense in BLT. When he has played well it was in a Reed-esque FS role.— Pro Football Focus (@PFF) March 27, 2013
The book on Huff is he's a sound tackler with good ball skills, but he's been inconsistent in coverage. The 6'0", 200-pounder is the kind of physical player the Ravens love, so it's not surprising that they would sign him to a deal.
He has also been a very durable player; he has played all 16 games in six of his seven seasons with the Raiders.
The Ravens ranked a middle-of-the-road 17th in yards allowed per pass attempt last season, but they ceded just 15 passing touchdowns, tied for second in the league. On the other hand, they didn't pick off a great deal of passes either (13).
It's going to be interesting to see if Huff can somehow imitate Reed, who notched four interceptions and 15 pass deflections in 2012.
Is this a good signing for the Ravens?
Coming off a Super Bowl campaign, the Ravens lost linebacker Dannell Ellerbe and Paul Kruger quickly to free agency this offseason, but they did ink star quarterback Joe Flacco to a multi-year deal. They also shockingly came away with former Denver Broncos outside linebacker Elvis Dumervil and found a nice fit in former New York Giants defensive tackle Chris Canty.
It was all gloom and doom for the Ravens early in the offseason, but they've done a relatively solid job of patching things up as we near the 2013 NFL draft.