Between Terrell Suggs injury, Ray Rices holdout, Ed Reeds chirping, salary cap constraints and the loss of three starters via free agency, the Ravens havent had the best of offseasons.
The stream of discouraging news was enough to convince at least a couple of sports books in Las Vegas to lower their odds on the Ravens advancing to the Super Bowl next February.
But with one week to go until training camp opens next week, the offseason is ending with a flurry of more positive developments.
First, Rice signed a five-year contract Monday just minutes before the deadline for franchise players, guaranteeing that he will be in uniform and ready to go after skipping the teams entire offseason program.
His signing gave the Ravens one less thing to worry about, and then Reed, whose plans have been difficult to gauge, told Comcasts Brent Harris on Wednesday that he never planned to sit out and would, in fact, be in uniform in 2012 one more thing they apparently dont have to worry about.
On top of all that, an analyst at NFL.com, Daniel Jeremiah, wrote Wednesday that there is a 75 percent chance that quarterback Joe Flacco and the Ravens will agreed to a longterm deal before the start of training camp next week.
Flaccos contract status has been widely perceived as the next item on the Ravens agenda now that Rice is locked up, and if the Ravens can clear that up as well, their offseason will have gone from ehhh to solidly productive in a matter of days.
Theres still no getting around the fact that they will be without Suggs, the reigning NFL Defensive Player of the Year, for at least part of the season and possibly all of it, putting more pressure on the rest of the defense as well as the offense to pick up the slack.
And of course, thats just a rumor about Flacco; it remains to be seen whether his agent, Joe Linta, can actually strike a deal.
But getting the Rice and Reed situations squared away is a positive development by any reckoning, and getting Flacco squared away as well would give the organization palpable momentum heading into training camp.