"I would do it 100 times over again," Weddle said, via the team's official site.
He added: "Baltimore, it's been an amazing place and experience. It's opened my eyes a little bit just of other organizations. I'm proud to be a part of this team, proud to be part of this group of men that really challenged each other, never pointed the fingers, never turned our backs on each other. We always stood together. Thatâs going to carry us in the future for sure."
While some of this is by-the-book athlete speak, Weddle's decision and happiness shed light on an interesting part of the free-agent process. We usually judge the success of a free-agent acquisition by the success of the team. So some say the Jacksonville Jaguars were wrong to acquire Malik Jackson this offseason because they have just three wins. In reality, Weddle and Jackson both went to places and schemes that suited them well. The more players focus on scheme fit in free agency, the better it might go for everyone.
Though Weddle is probably upset about missing the playoffs, he can take comfort in knowing that he picked the perfect destination. Baltimore's defense was the perfect vehicle for the 31-year-old veteran to operate in. His four picks, 48 tackles and 12 passes defensed should have earned him a Pro Bowl nomination. In a lot of other divisions, Baltimore's defense would have been good enough to coast into the postseason with a three-game lead.
That's not going to happen. Baltimore will reboot their quest for a playoff berth in 2017 with a linchpin at safety -- one less thing to worry about as they approach the draft and free agency. That kind of security for both player and team is the rare example of free agency working out.