Ravens sign Donte Stallworth giving him a second chance

Ravens owner Steve Bisciotti said a few days ago he believes in second chances…despite past criminal records.

Earlier today, the Ravens signed wide receiver Donte Stallworth for one year for $900 thousand plus $300 thousand incentives. Previously with the Cleveland Browns, this signing led to much discussion around Baltimore this afternoon.

Nov. 6, 2008, photo shows former Cleveland Browns wide receiver Donte' Stallworth running after a pass reception in an NFL football game against the Denver Broncos in Cleveland. c Tony Dejak, File / AP Photo

Stallworth has stats of  catching 296 career passes for 4,383 yards and 32 touchdowns. He has played for the New Orleans Saints, Philadelphia Eagles, New England Patriots and the Cleveland Browns. He had a career-high 70 catches and 945 yards in 2005.

So what would cause a debate on this number 3 receiver who will help push Mark Clayton and Kelley Washington?

Stallworth has a record…he was charged with a DUI vehicular manslaughter charge and served 24 days of a 30-day sentence in a Miami jail for striking and killing Miami construction worker Mario Reyes with his car while driving under the influence of alcohol.

In regards to the situation, Stallworth made a huge mistake, one he regrets.

“There was a time I felt the mistake I made was the end of the world for me,” Stallworth said in a statement. “I will never get that morning back. It weighs on me every day and will for the rest of my life. What I can do is move forward, try to be a better person, try to convince others not to do what I did and warn others about the dangers of drinking and driving. I have to show otherwise that what happened doesn’t reflect who I am.

“I have to prove that, and, hopefully, I’m on my way to doing that. I know my apology will never be strong enough for some, but I’ve made changes, and I’m trying to be a positive influence. It’s an honor and privilege to play in the NFL, and I’m so thankful for this opportunity.”

Is Stallworth going to be just another ‘thug’ with a record as the Ravens are stereotyped to be?

According to many sources who know Stallworth, he is a stand up guy and will be worth a lot to the Baltimore franchise.

Spencer Folau, a former offensive lineman with the Ravens and a member of the 2000 Superbowl winning team, spoke with Rex Snider and Ray Bachman on WNST sports radion station earlier today who played with Stallworth in New Orleans about who Stallworth really is.

“He is unbelievable.  It is unfortunate what happened to him down in Miami that morning but this is a good kid,” said Folau. ” He came in [New Orleans] he knew his role, he was a rookie; he was a he didnt say much but he could flat out play, he was a burner. He was a player.

“I think it’s just unfortunate, this could happen to any of us. It’s just kind of unfortunate because this guy is a yes sir, yes ma’am take your shirt off for you type of guy…all that bad character stuff, it’s not the Stallworth, the Donte I know. I know a good guy who doesn’t talk much, hes a great guy and can be great in the locker room. I think it’s a great signing,$900 grand that’s cheap.”

What do you think about this signing? Do the Ravens give out too many second chances?

Keep in mind, while not a minor mistake, Stallworth did something many people do everyday. We all know people who have blow-and-gos in their cars from getting arrested for DUIs.

Unfortunately, Stallworth’s ended with a life. But…this was not a habitual ‘mistake’ committed like so many other professional players do who beat their wives, girlfriends and kids and are drug pushers. Those aren’t ‘oops’ mistakes but common knowledge where they know what they are doing. Which is worse?

Give Stallworth a chance, Baltimore. He might surprise all of us. And who doesn’t deserve a second chance?

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4 Responses to “Ravens sign Donte Stallworth giving him a second chance”

  1. Bill Says:

    High Risk=High Reward with the Stallworth signing. It kinda shows how desperate the Ravens are to upgrade their wide receivers corp though. They can still afford to trade a 2nd rd pick for Brandon Marshall or Anquan Boldin and address the defense in the 1st round of the draft.

  2. zewilson5488 Says:

    I think this is a great move for the Ravens. I know he is going to be a bit rusty, but he is going to attend all of the OTA’s which should help him out. He had a promising start when he was in New Orleans and he is only 28-years-old. If he shakes of his rust fast, Flacco and Stallworth could be entering their prime together which could be a dangerous thing. I would love if we could get a Malcolm Floyd from San Diego because we wouldn’t have to give up much for him. Then re-sign Mason and Washington. That would be a solid WR core and hopefully we can upgrade the TE position or at least get a young back up for Heap.

  3. Luke Jones Says:

    The Stallworth signing is a solid, unspectacular move for the Ravens. The reality with the uncapped year makes free agency movement more uncertain than ever, so the organization jumped on the chance to add a piece to the wide receiver picture. No, he’s nowhere near the No. 1 receiver the Ravens seek, but they didn’t sign him to be that top guy.

    From all accounts, Stallworth is a decent enough guy who made a TERRIBLE choice, but if we’re going to judge him for that choice, shouldn’t we be just as hard on any other person that chooses to get behind the wheel while impaired? It just so happens Stallworth’s choice resulted in the death of a human being, but it could have just as easily been any other athlete–or regular joe–that gets behind the wheel under similar circumstances.

    • Genna Jean Wittstadt Says:

      Can I just tell you how annoying it has been to have to drag out this arguement? Who hasn’t made a mistake,and yet everyone wants to judge this guy. I think if there is any way to doing the right thing in his situation, he did it. And humbly and is ready to take a second chance. If he screws up again, then maybe it was a mistake on our part. But personally, I like that our head guys are willing to take risks in order to make a great team work together to go deep in post season. That’s what life is all about–opportunity and chances.

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