The odds of finding/developing a starting-caliber DT in the draft is significantly easier than finding an above average starting QB.
If Miami calls and offers one of their 2nd round picks and their 3rd or 4th rounder for this year and maybe another mid round pick next year, I'm all ears. Ngata is going to be almost 30 by the time next season starts and he hasn't had a full healthy season in over 2 years.
At some point you have to look at Art Jones, Pernell McPhee, and DeAngelo Tyson and think that is a pretty decent DT rotation. Toss in Ryan McBean and maybe pick up a Henry Melton, Glenn Dorsey, or Terrance Knighton and you've still got a nice blend of run stoppers and pass rushers at DT.
This gives you breathing room in case you do have to franchise Flacco. It also allows the team to keep Kruger (which DE pass rushers are not easy to come by and Kruger looks to be coming into his own right now) and it also allows the team to maybe go out and get a Greg Jennings or Mike Wallace.
And like others have said, if Flacco doesn't work out as a franchise guy, well then you're in better position (pick wise) to maybe move up in 2014 and go after someone like Brynn Renner out of UNC or Vanderburg out of Iowa.
Someone mentioned this in another thread, but Ngata, Lewis and Sugg's cap number next year almost exceeds the entire cap hit for the offense.
Regarding value? I'm not real sure. He doesn't bring much to the table as a pass rusher, so no one is going to throw picks at him like the Raiders did with Richard Seymour (who was a very good pass rusher).
I'd be interested for a high 2nd round pick, a mid day pick (5th or 6th) and maybe a mid day pick or two in 2014.
I will agree with the idea that the Ravens need to stop trading down and instead look to trade up. They need a real impact player at one of their positions of need, and since they can't seem to be able to find one in the late first/early second, they need to trade up to acquire one.
Hindsight is always 20/20 but if they were more aggressive in the draft, instead of sitting back, letting other teams jump them, and then trading down, they could have Dez Bryant right now instead of Kindle and Cody. In the 5 picks before their first round pick last year, Decastro, Hightower, Mercilus, and Zietler all went off the board...trade up.
The biggest thing is, they need to find a few solid, reasonably priced veterans, the Justin Bannon's of the world to fill some holes and add some depth, and a good draft is vital. I'm not crazy about them breaking the bank on high priced FA's or expensive (in picks and $$) trades. If you look around the league, those moves rarely offer a good return on the investment.
At this point, I lean towards franchising Joe. I don't know if I'm confidant enough in him long term to justify a long term deal, even if it's for Fitzpatrick money. Although I guess their is the temptation to try and buy low. Joe doesn't have much in the way of leverage right now. I dunno. On the fence about franchise vs long term deal.
The Ngata question is an interesting one. The guy has been playing hurt, but, let's face it, he seems to get hurt every year. And he's not getting any younger. I guess I'd be open to moving him for at least a 1st round pick plus another mid round pick (3rd or 4th?). Basically some team would have to be willing to give me a king's ransom to make it worth my while.
For the purpose of forum discussions though, I'd start at two 2nds, would be excited with a 2nd and 3rd, but could live with one 2nd.
Ed Reed. My man.
But I'm not sure OCs and QBs are even scared of him anymore. *smh*