The classic saying goes “nothing good happens after midnight.”
The Baltimore Ravens have dealt with a number of off-field incidents over time. Whether it was Ray Lewis‘s Atlanta nightclub murder investigation, Ray Rice knocking his then- fiancé out cold in an Atlantic City elevator, or even Jacoby Jones being injured by the stripper ‘Sweet Pea’ on a party bus, there’s been a handful of morning headlines that Ravens fans have not had the pleasure of reading.
On Friday morning, stories surfaced about two Ravens players who were active in the late-night hours. Linebacker C.J. Mosley, scheduled to become an unrestricted free agent on March 13, posted a video on his Instagram story around 2:00 am and has since deleted it. Running back Alex Collins, who was set to become a restricted free agent at the start of free agency, was arrested just before 6:00 am in Owings Mills about a mile from the Ravens team facility.
Let’s focus in on these two events and determine how severe they are to the players and the Ravens.
C.J. Mosley’s Instagram video
Mosley’s 44-second video shows the linebacker standing outside in the snow. There’s female laughter in the background. Mosley makes a point of saying that rather he be in Alabama, Florida, or Los Angeles, he’s in Baltimore. “Don’t franchise or sign me, we’ll see what happens,” Mosley says. He continues, profanity included, until he ends the video by saying “try me” a few times into the camera.
Mosley deleted the Instagram story a few hours later and issued an apology for using profanity.
Whether Mosley was under the influence of alcohol of not, his demeanor in the video tells me that he’s frustrated that the Ravens haven’t retained him yet. Last week the Ravens agreed to a contract extension with Tavon Young, a 2016 fourth-round pick. To Mosley, the 17th-overall pick of the 2014 NFL Draft, the Ravens not reaching a deal with him to this point probably ruffled some feathers.
In regards to the video, it’s not severe enough to have a real impact on the Ravens desire to bring Mosley back. Sure, what Mosley said in the video wasn’t a great look, but he wasn’t hurting anyone or violating any league rules. Should he stay off social media when he goes out? Absolutely. But this isn’t an offense that ruins the relationship or commendatory between Mosley and the team.
Alex Collins being arrested
Per reports, Collins was arrested following a car crash near the Under Armour Performance Center in Owings Mills. Collins was taken into police custody.
Just after midnight on Saturday morning, the details surrounding Collins were released. According to the Baltimore County Police, Collins is charged of possession with intent to distribute, possession of marijuana in excess of over 10 grams, and possessing a handgun in a vehicle.
Police responded to a 911 call placed around 5:00 am and found Collins asleep at the wheel when they found his vehicle close to the 6:00 am hour. They searched the car, finding the handgun and marijuana. Collins told the police that he also had marijuana and guns at his home.
Collins and a friend left the Towson area around 4:00 am when there was snow on the ground. Collins lost control of the vehicle due to the slippery conditions and fell asleep after crashing into the tree. The passenger in the vehicle elected to walk the rest of the way home but is also being charged. Collins was released on a $7,500 bond and has a preliminary hearing date scheduled for March 29.
Not 12 hours following the arrest, the Ravens waived Collins. Even without the arrest, Collins was already expected to be on the way out after posting just 411 rushing yards in 2018. Collins did score eight touchdowns but averaged just 3.6 yards-per-carry.
After such a promising 2017 season, Collins battled injuries in 2018 and fell into John Harbaugh’s doghouse due to fumbling issues.
Gus Edwards and Kenneth Dixon both performed well after Collins landed on injured reserve. Both are expected to be involved in the Ravens 2019 offense, and General Manager Eric DeCosta has expressed a desire to add more offensive play-makers. With Edwards, Dixon, and Lamar Jackson already figured into the rushing attack, along with expected additions at running back via free agency or the draft, Collins was on the outside looking in. His arrest only made the Ravens decision easier.
Final Thoughts: The NFL offseason always makes fans nervous due to what can happen off the field. It doesn’t help that late February and early March are among the quietest periods of the NFL year. It’s early in the offseason, but hopefully the Ravens don’t hear about more off-field instances involving their players anytime soon.