The Baltimore Ravens pulled off another late pre-season trade sending LB Antwan Barnes to the Philadelphia Eagles for an undisclosed conditional draft pick. The move is surprising as Barnes has looked good in pre-season and the Ravens have need of pass rushers, Barnes specialty, coming off last season where they failed to generate consistent pressure. There are several scenarios that could explain the Ravens thinking: 1) Perhaps they feel confident that a rejuvenated Terrell Suggs, an improved Paul Kruger and the addition of Cory Redding will bolster therush enough, making Barnes expendable, 2) or the Ravens feel like Jameel McClain is better at OLB, making Barnes redundant, 3) or the Ravens believe that Sergio Kindle is closer to returning than we have been lead to believe.
Another reason the Ravens may have pulled the trigger could be that they wanted to get something in return for Barnes, who was in the last year of his contract, before he walks at the end of the year. If nothing else the club probably got a similar draft pick that they sent to Seattle to trade for Josh Wilson, so in essence they traded Barnes for Wilson. Barnes’ name came up several times as possible trade fodder for a defensive back. The move also frees up a roster spot for a player like Edgar Jones or Jason Phillips. I don’t think either player is as talented as Barnes, but perhaps the club did not view Barnes as a significant contributor for 2010.