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Free Agency Rumor Mill

Posted Apr 10, 2013

We’ll round up some of the latest free agency news and rumors related to the Ravens.


Wednesday, April 10

Ravens Nearing Deal With LB McClain

The Ravens are reportedly close to signing former Oakland Raiders inside linebacker Rolando McClain, according to ESPN’s Adam Schefter. The two sides are scheduled to talk today to see if they can “iron out unresolved issues,” Schefter reported. 

The former top-10 pick in 2010 was released by the Raiders last week following a disappointing 2012 season. He has also dealt with off-field issues, including a two-game suspension last year for conduct deemed detrimental to the team.

Despite the struggles in Oakland, McClain is still just 23 years old and has plenty of talent at a position of significant need for the Ravens. Baltimore is working to replace departed linebackers Ray Lewis and Dannell Ellerbe, and Jameel McClain is recovering from a spinal cord contusion. Rolando McClain could immediately fill in at one of those spots.

Rolando McClain played in 11 games last year and finished the seasons with 37 tackles and one sack. In his three years with the Raiders, he registered 246 tackles, 6.5 sacks and one interception.

Like Ravens General Manager Ozzie Newsome, Rolando McClain is an Alabama product that was a key member of the Crimson Tide’s 2010 national championship team.

Wednesday, April 3

McKinnie, Ravens Still In Touch
Free-agent left tackle Bryant McKinnie tweeted that his agent and Ravens General Manager Ozzie Newsome are still in contact. "We still have a chance 2 get something done," he said. The Baltimore Sun's Aaron Wilson reports that the market for McKinnie is in "slow motion."

Monday, March 25

Huff Visiting With Ravens This Week
Free-agent safety Michael Huff met with the Dallas Cowboys Monday and is expected to visit Baltimore later this week, according to The Baltimore Sun's Aaron Wilson. The Cowboys are not in financial position to sign Huff, who was cut by the Oakland Raiders because he carried a hefty $11.3 million salary-cap hit this year.

Wednesday, March 20

Reed Decision Was Expected Today
Ed Reed was expected to make a decision Wednesday regarding his plans for next season, according to CBSsports.com’s Jason La Canfora. Reed hasn’t declared his intentions yet, and La Canfora said that nobody will rush him into a decision. The Texans have continued to make a strong push for Reed at the owners meetings, but the Ravens have also maintained their interest and Owner Steve Bisciotti said his gut feeling was that Reed would return to Baltimore.

Ravens Pessimistic About Keeping Reed
The Ravens don’t like their chances of keeping safety Ed Reed on the roster, according to the NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport. He is reportedly seeking a contract with an annual salary of about $4 million, and it’s doubtful the Ravens will do that.

Texans Continue Push For Reed
The Houston Texans have continue their push to sign safety Ed Reed, who visited with the team last week. Houston reportedly gave Reed’s agent a strong offer at the NFL’s owners meetings, according to CBSsports.com’s Jason La Canfora.

Tuesday, March 19

Texans Meeting With Reed’s Agent
The Texans front office have continued the dialogue with safety Ed Reed’s agent David Dunn since the future Hall of Famer visited Houston last week. Dunn reportedly met with the Texans against Tuesday, according to the Houston Chronicle, and the two have talked every day since Reed’s visit and neither side has budged. 

Details On Texans’ Offer
The Texans tried to sign Reed to a three-year deal worth about $4 million annually, according to The Baltimore Sun’s Aaron Wilson. Reed made about $7.2 million last year with the Ravens and is seeking a similar kind of salary, Wilson reported.  

Monday, March 18

Ravens Negotiating With Dumervil
Baltimore is negotiating with outside linebacker Elvis Dumervil, an NFL source tells the Denver Post's Mike Klis. Dumervil received a strong recommendation from Linebackers Coach Don "Wink" Martindale, who used to coach Dumervil in Denver.

Ravens Interested In Safety Huff
The Ravens are one of the teams interested in unrestricted free agent safety Michael Huff, according to The Baltimore Sun. Huff, who has spent the last seven seasons with the Oakland Raiders, could help the void left in the secondary once Bernard Pollard was cut. The Packers, Cowboys and Titans are also reportedly interested in him.

Saturday, March 16

Dumervil Firmly On Ravens Radar
Pass rusher Elvis Dumervil is "firmly on the Ravens' radar" says The Baltimore Sun's Aaron Wilson. Dumervil was released by the Broncos Friday in a fax machine screw-up after agreeing to take a pay cut. The 29-year-old pass rusher had 11 sacks last year. There is interest from several teams, Wilson reports, and the Ravens hope to meet with him after the owners meetings.

Baltimore Pays J. Jones $1 Million Bonus
The Ravens paid wide receiver/return specialist Jacoby Jones his $1 million roster bonus, according to The Baltimore Sun's Aaron Wilson. There had been speculation that the Ravens could part ways with him before the bonus considering he carries a $3 million base salary.

Ravens To Meet With Reed's Agent In Phoenix
Ownership from the Ravens and Texans plan to meet with Ed Reed's agent at the league meetings in Phoenix next week, reports CBS Sports' Jason La Canfora. The Ravens will reportedly make their push for the safety. La Canfora says the bottom line is the Texans' offer wasn't substantial enough to preclude Reed from signing and the "door is still wide open for the Ravens."

Friday, March 15

Reed's Agent Still Talking With Texans
Ed Reed left Houston because he had a prior engagement, but has authorized his agent to continue talks with the Houston Texans, reports the NFL Network's Albert Breer. So discussions are ongoing.

Ravens Looking At DE Spears
Baltimore is looking closely at free agent defensive end Marcus Spears, according to Aaron Wilson of The Baltimore Sun. Spears, 30, was cut this offseason after signing a five-year, $19.2 million contract last year. He had 25 tackles and a sack in six starts last year.

Reed Leaves Houston Without Deal
The Texans confirmed that safety Ed Reed left their building without a new deal and that nothing is expected today. The Baltimore Sun's Aaron Wilson says Reed will "shop the deal around" and that "interest remains heavy between both sides."

Boldin Could Make Pitta Vulnerable
Until Anquan Boldin returns from Africa and takes his physical to complete his trade, his contract is still on the Ravens' books. That means another team could swoop in and make an offer Baltimore currently wouldn't be able to match, reports The Sun's Aaron Wilson.

Pitta Getting Free Agent Interest
Tight end Dennis Pitta received a second-round tender from the Baltimore Ravens, and now is getting preliminary inquiries from more than one team, according to Aaron Wilson of The Baltimore Sun. There have been no offers made yet. If a team were to make Pitta a contract offer, the Ravens would have the opportunity to match or beat that offer. If Baltimore chose not to, they would receive a second-round pick.

50-50 On Reed
ESPN's Adam Schefter reported at 1:59 a.m. that a source in the know said it's 50-50 at best that Ed Reed signs with the Houston Texans and that the Ravens are still a possibility.

Thursday, March 14

Reed Says Texans Interest Is Mutual
Ed Reed is apparently doing interviews while out in Houston. He told FOX Sports Director Mark Berman that the interest between the Texans and him is "mutual." Said Reed, "Both of us are condenders and want to get a championship, but we still have some things to work out. ... Conversations have been great, amazing. We're on the same page as far as what we need to get done."

Reed Being Courted By Texans
In addition to the private jet, the Texans are taking Ed Reed to Reliant Stadium and he's posing for pictures. Reed told the Houston Chronicle's John McClain that relatives from New Orleans have been calling about his potential signing with nearby Houston. Reed said "a few things need to be worked out."

Reed Wants $6 Million Per Year, Texans Serious
Ed Reed wants an average of $6 million per season and the Houston Texans can get within that range, reports The Baltimore Sun's Aaron Wilson. The Texans are "very serious" about their desire for Reed.

Texans GM Picks Reed Up In Jet
Houston General Manager Rick Smith picked free agent safety Ed Reed up in Texans Chairman and CEO Bob McNair's private jet, according to the Texans twitter page.

Wednesday, March 13

Reed To Visit Texans
Safty Ed Reed will visit the Houston Texans on Thursday, a source tells The Baltimore Sun's Aaron Wilson. Reed has a strong relationship with Houston wide receiver Andre Johnson dating back to their time together at the University of Miami. Houston has a need at safety. The Texans made an "extremely strong" bid to woo Reed.

Ravens Not Pursuing WR Amendola?
Now there's conflicting reports on the Ravens' interest in wide receiver Danny Amendola. CBS Sports' Jason La Canfora says he continues to hear Baltimore is not pursuing him and never have.

A Lot Of Interest In C. Williams
The Baltimore Sun's Aaron Wilson reports that there are "a lot of teams" calling about cornerback Cary Williams. The market is developing but there's nothing imminent, the report states.

Tuesday, March 12

Ravens 'Highly' Interested In WR Amendola
After trading Anquan Boldin, the Ravens are reportedly "highly interested" in free-agent wide receiver Danny Amendola. Amendola, 27, caught 63 passes for 666 yards last season, but was limited to just 11 games due to injuries. The 5-foot-11, 183-pound wideout has had health issues during his career. The question, according to The Sun, is whether Amendola is in the Ravens' price range.

Reed To 49ers A Smokescreen?
There was speculation earlier Tuesday that Ed Reed, who recently hired agent David Dunn, could be headed to San Francisco. That is "most likely not happening," according to a tweet from Pro Football Talk. "It's a smokescreen aimed at creating interest in Reed," a source told the website.

DE Canty Visits Ravens
Defensive end Chris Canty is visiting with the Ravens Tuesday, according to The Baltimore  Sun. Canty was released by the Giants in February as part of a salary cap purge, and he has visited with a handful of teams since then. Canty, 30, spent the last four seasons with the Giants  and is a big lineman (6-foot-7, 317 pounds), who can stuff the run and also get after the passer.

Browns Closing In On Kruger
According to Aaron Wilson of The Baltimore Sun, the Cleveland Browns are "closing in" on their target, outside linebacker Paul Kruger. Krguer, who notched nine regular-season sacks last year, has been rumored to be a possibility for the Browns and Colts.

Monday, March 11

Ravens Trying To Trade Boldin
The Ravens are trying to trade wide receiver Anquan Boldin, according to a tweet from Pro Football Talk. The Ravens' proposal of a $2 million paycut was reportedly rejected by the wide receiver, who is under contract for one more year.

Sunday, March 10

Harrison Interested In Joining Ravens
Former Pittsburgh Steelers pass rusher James Harrison wouldn't have any qualms switching sides. Harrison's agent, Bill Parise, told The Baltimore Sun's Aaron Wilson that "Baltimore would be a great fit for James," and that his client "would definitely be interested." Harrison, 34, was released by the Steelers Saturday after notching just six sacks last year, his fewest since 2006.

Colts, Browns In Bidding War For Kruger
As expected, pass rusher Paul Kruger is getting plenty of interest on the free-agent market. Aaron Wilson of The Baltimore Sun reports that the Colts and Browns are expected to be in a bidding war for his services. Meanwhile, linebacker Dannell Ellerbe is drawing interest from several teams, including the Browns. Cornerback Cary Williams' agent has fielded calls from multiple teams.

Boldin Declines $2 Million Pay Cut, Still Fluid
So now reports again suggest that Boldin has been asked to take a paycut. The Baltimore Sun reports that Boldin rejected a $2 million paycut. But it still remains a fluid situation, according to Aaron Wilson.

Boldin Unaware? Chances At 50-50
Pro Football Talk says discussions about wide receiver Anquan Boldin taking a pay cut have occurred, but Boldin just may not have been informed of them. The website says the chances of Boldin staying with the Ravens, according to a source, are 50-50.

Browns Contact Agents For Kruger, Ellerbe
The Browns are making runs for two of the Ravens' top free agents. The Cleveland Plain Dealer reports that the Browns have already made contract with outside linebacker Paul Kruger and inside linebacker Dannell Ellerbe's agents and appear ready to make formal offers to both.

Saturday, March 9

Boldin Says It's About 'Principles'
Anquan Boldin told USA Today he's not ready to confirm Saturday's reports, but said he's no longer considering retirement if he's released. "When I signed with the Ravens, I signed for four years," Boldin said. "With me, it's all about principles. At no point, no matter how well I played, would I come back to the table and say, 'I need more money.'"

Boldin Expects To Play 2013 In Baltimore
Wide receiver Anquan Boldin was in Arizona today for the Kurt Warner Ultimate Football Experience. While there, ESPN's Adam Schefter said Boldin told him that he expects to play in Baltimore next season with his existing deal. Boldin said the Ravens have not asked him to restructure his deal, as previous reports suggest.

Hot Market For Ellerbe, No Ravens Offer Yet
Linebacker Dannell Ellerbe's agent, Hadley Englehard, told USA Today that he has entertained "several" inquiries from interested teams, including one at 12:01 a.m. Saturday. Englehard said the Ravens have not made an offer to Ellerbe yet, despite reports that they were prepared to make a "signficant offer."

Boldin Rejects Ravens' Offer
Wide receiver Anquan Boldin has rejected the Ravens' offer of a reduced salary and is preparing to be an unrestricted free agent if released, according to USA Today. Boldin had previously said he would retire rather than play for another team. "I think he was trying to express loyalty to them," a source said of Boldin. "I know that he's hoping to stay with them, but he's willing to go someplace else."

USA Today reports that Boldin will not budge from his $6 million base salary, which comes with a $7.531 million cap hit in the final year of his deal. "Once he's decided, you might as well to try to move the Rock of Gibraltar," the source told USA Today. The Ravens still have until Tuesday to try to work out a deal, keep Boldin at his current salary or release the veteran.

Boldin Close To Being Released Friday
Wide receiver Anquan Boldin was so close to being cut on Friday that he had prepared a statement thanking fans for their support during his time in Baltimore, reports The Baltimore Sun's Aaron Wilson. Now the team remains hopeful of working something out with Boldin.

Ravens Want Boldin To Take Pay Cut
The Ravens want wide receiver Anquan Boldin to renegotiate his $6 million base salary ($7.531 million salary-cap figure) he is set to earn in 2013, sources tell FOX Sports’ Alex Marvez. Otherwise, Boldin will be released before the start of free agency Tuesday, the report states. Boldin, 32, had a strong season with 65 receptions for 921 yards and four touchdowns. He was particularly valuable in the playoffs, where caught 22 passes for 380 yards and four scores. Boldin previously said he would retire if he’s released by the Ravens.

Friday, March 8

Ellerbe's Agent: LB Will Talk To All 32 Teams
Dannell Ellerbe's agent, Hadley Engelhard, told The Baltimore Sun's Aaron Wilson that he does not anticipate a deal with the Ravens before midnight Saturday. "Starting Saturday, we'll be talking to all 32 teams," he said.

Ravens To Make 'Significant Offer' To Ellerbe
It appears the Ravens are trying to keep inside linebacker Dannnell Ellerbe off the market. According to The Baltimore Sun's Aaron Wilson, the Ravens are prepared to make Ellerbe a "significant offer" prior to the start of free agency Saturday night. It could be in the $25 to $30 million range.

Thursday, March 7

Browns To Pursue Kruger
Cleveland is switching from a 4-3 defense to a 3-4 and has plenty of cap room ($47 million) to make a move on a pass rusher like Kruger. Mary Kay Cabot also reports that the Browns will go after Kruger and Detroit's Cliff Avril in free agency.

Wednesday, March 6

Ellerbe May Be Too Much To Afford
Now that Joe Flacco is signed, inside linebacker Dannell Ellerbe is widely expected to be the next free-agent priority for the Ravens. He was arguably the team’s top defender last season and keeping him in Baltimore would help offset the loss of Ray Lewis. While the Ravens would like to bring back Ellerbe, Sports Illustrated’s Peter King sees that as improbable. “I think it's looking more and more likely that the free-agent inside linebacker the team would like to keep, Dannell Ellerbe, will get a bigger offer elsewhere than the Ravens would be willing to pay,” King wrote. “If so, he'll likely leave too.”

Reed Still Hasn’t Heard From Ravens
Since the season has ended, veteran Ed Reed has said on numerous occasions that he would like to be back in Baltimore next season. Reed said during an appearance on NFL AM Monday that he had yet to hear from the Ravens about working out a new deal, but that he still views himself as a Raven. After that interview, Reed still hadn’t heard from the Ravens, according to the NFL Network’s Albert Breer. “Texted with Ed Reed last night,” Breer tweeted. “He still hadn't talked with Ravens, but wants to be back. Ozzie Newsome is in FL at comp committee meetings.”

Will Ravens Pursue 49ers Defensive Tackle?
The Ravens are interested in upgrading the interior of their defensive line, and to do so they could look to the team they just took down in the Super Bowl. San Francisco 49ers Ricky Jean-Francois is an unrestricted free agent and the Ravens have some interest in him, according to Aaron Wilson of The Baltimore Sun. Jean-Francois was a rotational player for the 49ers last year, seeing time at nose guard and defensive end, which could make him a versatile piece for the Ravens.

Kruger Set To Cash In
Outside linebacker Paul Kruger is considered one of the top pass rushing free agents set to hit the market this year after a breakout 2012 season. It appears he’s going to have a big payday coming his way, as Jason Cole of Yahoo! Sports says that Kruger could end up making about $10 million a season.

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