Remember back in April at the NFL Draft when the Ravens basically had to skip their turn during the televised first round? They were scheduled to pick at #26 and we all waited with bated breath while the clock…ran out. Then suddenly it wasn’t their pick any more, and they were picking 27th.
The Ravens still got their man in Colorado CB Jimmy Smith, but the fiasco left Ozzie Newsome and Co. with the proverbial pie all over their faces.
As it turned out, a miscommunication with the Chicago Bears, and a potential trade gone awry were the culprits. The Bears came out and apologized, taking full responsibility for the situation. Still, it could have very easily cost the Ravens dearly, and owner Steve Bisciotti came out and basically said that he thought the Bears should face league reprimand.
“I’m disappointed in the Bears and the McCaskeys [the Bears’ owners]. It is in my opinion a deviation from their great legacy. They concluded that their heartfelt and admirable apology was sufficient for our loss. All of us at the Ravens strongly disagree … probably end of story.”
Most of us had pretty much forgotten about this story over the past three months.
John Harbaugh though, apparently has not.
Appearing on ESPN 1000 radio today, Harbaugh went off on the Bears:
“It was disappointing,” Harbaugh said. “They can get mad at me if they want, but I’m not buying the mistake thing. It wasn’t a mistake. They knew what they were doing.
“They put their guy on the phone. They agreed to a pick. They got their guy on the phone. They recognized he wasn’t getting calls from the team behind them, and they basically stalled for over a minute, telling us they had called the trade in. They hadn’t called the trade in. They said it was a mistake. Those guys have been doing it for a long time, c’mon.”
“You communicate back and forth. And someone’s responsible for calling a trade in,” Harbaugh said Tuesday. “There’s no way to not get that done. We saw on TV that they had their guy on the phone and he was who they were talking to, and then they drafted him.
“So they basically just stole two spots from us, and that’s not OK. That’s not something … it’s not ethical, it’s not right. And I personally agree with our owner Steve Bisciotti that they should have been held accountable for it. But also it is what it is, they didn’t do anything illegal. We were just disappointed with it.”
“Of course,” Harbaugh said, when asked whether the Ravens would be reluctant to deal with the Bears in trade matters moving forward. “How do you know that they actually called a trade in? I know one thing, we’ll be a lot more careful with all of our… we basically just took them at their word, and obviously that was a mistake.”
While it would make for good TV, the Ravens and Bears do not meet again on the gridiron (barring a Super Bowl match up) until 2013 (under current scheduling guidelines anyway – I suppose that could all change under this new agreement that is about to be signed?)