Last Friday, news broke that former Baltimore Ravens defensive end Calais Campbell was set to meet with the Buffalo Bills on a free-agent visit. That visit never took place, with Campbell now set to sign with the Atlanta Falcons.
NFL reporter Ari Meirov tweeted the news early Wednesday morning that Campbell would pass up a trip to Orchard Park, NY, stating that Campbell “sounds like he wants to land in Atlanta and they’ll work to finalize an agreement.”
Former #Ravens DL Calais Campbell is planning to sign with the Atlanta Falcons, per @RapSheet. Campbell had other visits on the docket but sounds like he wants to land in Atlanta and they’ll work to finalize an agreement. #Falcons continue to add.— Ari Meirov (@MySportsUpdate) March 29, 2023
NFL Network and NFL.com National Insider Ian Rapoport went into greater detail on NFL Now about the Falcons’ signing of Calais Campbell to a one-year contract, shared in the tweet embedded below.
To Rapoport’s understanding, the winning factor for Campbell came down to “a 40-minute phone call with Arthur Blank the owner about — not football — (but) about charity, about community, about leadership. That all helped seal the deal.”
Calais Campbell is a well-decorated 15-year NFL veteran who continues to defy age at 36 and exemplifies what it means to use a public platform to make a positive impact in the community and world. While perhaps disappointing that the 2019 Walter Payton NFL Man of the Year recipient won’t suit up for the Bills now, it’s hard to fault him making a decision that was weighted heavily on his involvement in the realms of charity, community, and leadership.
General manager Brandon Beane and the Buffalo Bills will continue their search to add defensive talent elsewhere, be they free agents or rookies via the 2023 NFL Draft.