Ryan Mallett to Ravens: Latest Contract Details, Comments and Reaction

Alec Nathan@@AlecBNathanFeatured Columnist

Houston Texans' Ryan Mallett (15) throws against the Indianapolis Colts during the first half of an NFL football game Thursday, Oct. 8, 2015, in Houston. (AP Photo/George Bridges)
George Bridges/Associated Press

Ryan Mallett was released by the Houston Texans after missing the team's flight to Miami for a Week 7 showdown with the Dolphins, but the Baltimore Ravens are banking on the 27-year-old signal-caller turning in a more exemplary attendance record. The Ravens announced Tuesday morning that they signed Mallett.  

According to Dianna Marie Russini of ESPN and Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle, the Ravens agreed to a deal with Mallett on Monday. NFL Network's Ian Rapoport reported Mallett's contract could be worth as much as $2.5 million in 2016.

The Ravens announced Dec. 2 that they worked out Mallett, with Joe Flacco on injured reserve due to a torn ACL and MCL. 

"He gives the Ravens something they've never had under coach John Harbaugh -- a big-armed backup who can stretch the field like Flacco," ESPN.com's Jamison Hensley wrote. "Of course, in terms of dependability, Mallett is the anti-Flacco, which is a perception that only he can change."

Mallett entered the 2015 season as Houston's backup behind Brian Hoyer, but the fifth-year quarterback took over as Houston's man under center for four games before Hoyer regained control of the gig. 

In the four games Mallett started between Weeks 2 and 5, he never threw for more than one touchdown or 250 yards in a single outing. Additionally, his quarterback rating didn't top 80 in a game over the course of those appearances. 

Mallett has always been renowned for wielding one of the NFL's strongest arms, but he's never been a particularly accurate passer in the pocket. Before the Texans cut him, Mallett completed just 53.1 percent of his passes, throwing for 770 yards, three touchdowns and four interceptions. 

The problemas Mallett's performance during the first half of the 2015 season exemplified—was that he couldn't parlay that strength into accurate throws downfield. 

Mallett completed 59.2 percent of his passes within 10 yards of the line of scrimmage, but that figure plummeted to 45.7 percent between 11 and 20 yards. All told, Mallett completed just three out of 13 passes beyond 20 yards during his brief run with the Texans in 2015.

Mallett told ESPN.com's Tania Ganguli over the summer that he had been working on improving his accuracy:

A lot of times I try to get it there as fast as I can, but I don't need to. I've worked a lot on that. Just reps and reps and more reps. The older you get the more you understand when you need to throw it hard, when you need to throw it soft, who you need to throw it soft to, who can catch it, who can't, all that stuff.

The former third-round pick has the raw talent to stick in the NFL, but an inability to refine crucial elements of his passing arsenal could ultimately cap his upside. 

Following failed stints with the Texans and the New England Patriots, Mallett will need to make this opportunity count. If he doesn't, it could wind up being his last in the NFL. 

Stats courtesy of ESPN.com unless noted otherwise.


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