Paul Frederiksen-USA TODAY Sports
Teams who win a Super Bowl generally like to follow a formula: Change as little as possible, because if something works, there's no need to fix it.
Not the Baltimore Ravens.
The Ravens chose to clean house after their Super Bowl triumph. It would have been considered a blowing up of the entire franchise's identity if they hadn't handled their subtractions by making equally as exciting additions.
Ray Lewis' retirement was expected. Other moves, however, were not. The trading of wide receiver Anquan Boldin to the San Francisco 49ers, the release of Bernard Pollard and not re-signing Ed Reed nor Dannell Ellerbe headlined the Ravens offseason.
The Ravens acted quickly in free agency to add players to fill some of these roster holes, like safety Michael Huff and outside linebacker Elvis Dumervil.
They also kept many of their own important free agents, including defensive end Arthur Jones, tight ends Dennis Pitta and Ed Dickson and guard Ramon Harewood—it wasn't all about attrition.
In the draft, Baltimore further shored up defensive roster vacancies. It took safety Matt Elam in Round 1, linebacker Arthur Brown in Round 2 (who is the heir apparent to Lewis) and outside linebacker John Simon in Round 4.
The Ravens also drafted Elon safety Aaron Mellette in Round 7. Despite his draft pedigree, Mellette is a major steal and could take over Boldin's former job.
Defensively, the Ravens have gotten younger without sacrificing talent. While their overall on-field experience has decreased, the odds are that having younger players on defense will help stave off another year when they give up a disappointing 363.9 yards per game—a decidedly un-Ravens number.
Though the Ravens have undergone many roster changes this offseason, there's nothing to indicate they'll be missing the playoffs in 2013. They've made it every year since 2008, and these moves are geared toward reaching the postseason for the next five years.