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Rolando McClain says he looks to fill Ray Lewis' slot with Ravens

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Rolando McClain told the Madison Weekly News he will be joining the Baltimore Ravens and looks to fill the slot left by the retired Ray Lewis.

Ezra Shaw

Even before the Raiders waived Rolando McClain, the most logical destination for him was Baltimore. The Ravens lost both starting inside linebackers - Dannelle Ellerbe as a free agent and Ray Lewis to retirement. Now, that merger looks imminent and McClain hopes to take the place of the Hall of Fame bound Ray Lewis.

"Ray Lewis retired after winning the Super Bowl and I look to fill his slot," said McClain. "No one can fill his shoes, but I can fill his slot. I just want to fill out the shoes of Rolando McClain. This is a perfect fit for me personally."

The main problem here is Ray Lewis was the glue that held this Ravens defense together. People like to talk about guys like McClain going to a team with solid veteran leadership in place. That leadership was provided by Lewis who won't be there to police McClain when, as he says "the devil wins."

McClain busted out of Oakland in part because there was no player on the Raiders who could step in and keep him on the straight and narrow. But that doesn't really explain his poor play on the field. A prevailing theory is that it was the scheme that was at issue. McClain will tell you that was the only issue and has no doubt this move with revive his career.

"It's a move that can't go wrong and I'm looking forward to playing in Baltimore as the Ravens run the same or very similar defense as I was a part of at the University of Alabama."

Not only is it a good fit scheme wise but he will be reunited with former Alabama teammate Terrence Cody as well as Courtney Upshaw who replaced McClain as a standout linebacker for the Crimson Tide. He will also be following former Raider Michael Huff who signed to replace Ed Reed at free safety.