Posted by ESPN.com’s James Walker
Baltimore was coming off an appearance in the AFC Championship Game, and by season’s end the team had depth issues at cornerback. The Ravens cut former Pro Bowler Chris McAlister and former starter Samari Rolle’s health was in question. Rolle is currently on the physically unable to perform list (PUP) with a neck injury.
So the Ravens spotted their target and landed Foxworth by giving him a four-year, $28 million contract. The $7 million per year average was a little surprising considering Foxworth was a backup in more than half of his career games. But considering Baltimore’s need and the thin market, the Ravens did what was necessary.
The Ravens added another speedy corner to pair with starter Fabian Washington, while in turn Foxworth, a University of Maryland alum, returned to Baltimore, where he went to high school. The match made sense on many levels.
But so far the transition has been rocky. Foxworth, 26, hasn’t developed into the No. 1 cornerback the Ravens were hoping for. He has only 13 tackles and one interception through six games. As a result, Baltimore’s pass defense as a whole is struggling. The Ravens (3-3) are ranked No. 22 in the NFL against the pass and it’s a major reason why they’ve lost three straight.
Granted, Foxworth isn’t the only reason Baltimore’s defense hasn’t lived up to expectations. But improved performance from the team’s top cornerback could go a long way toward helping the Ravens play more consistently after their bye week.