Maybe all the off the field troubles and distractions finally caught up with former Ravens RB Jamal Lewis. The back, the Ravens all-time leading rusher, was cut on Wednesday by the team, just three seasons after running for over 2,000 yards. Ravens GM Ozzie Newsome stated to the media that the team would like to bring Lewis back, but only at a reduced rate and after he goes out and explores the free agent market.
Lewis has slipped since that 2,000 yard season, and after serving jail time after being caught up in a drug ring situation, has never seemed to come close to regaining that form of that special 2003 season. Last year Lewis did lead the team with 1,132 yards, the fifth time in six seasons he has gone over the 1,000 yard mark. The biggest reason Lewis was let go through was due to the $5 mil bonus he was set to receive on March 5th for being on the roster.
The back has also been plagued by ankle problems, and those injuries really hindered his 2005 season. He will get looks from plenty of teams around the league, and already there is talk that he could find himself in Denver, running behind a solid Broncos line that could revamp his career. As for Baltimore, they will look to possible free agents on the market like Dominic Rhodes, Ahman Green and possibly Travis Henry if he is cut by the Titans.
Lewis may be better served moving on, and there are plenty of teams that would be willing to pay very well for his services. If he can regain even some of that form from the 2003 season, he could be a stuf back somewhere that in the end could be an extreme bargain in free agency.