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Ravens Waive Josh Bynes, Bring Back Derek Cox

Posted Sep 2, 2014

Baltimore opted to keep inside linebackers Albert McClellan and Zachary Orr over Josh Bynes.

The Ravens have officially re-signed cornerback Derek Cox. That’s not a big surprise considering Baltimore had just four cornerbacks on the 53-man roster.

The move to make room for Cox is somewhat surprising, however.

Baltimore waived inside linebacker Josh Bynes, who started six games and played in 15 last season, making 45 tackles and three pass defenses. Bynes has been with the Ravens the past three years.

“All I can tell you about Josh Bynes is that if we can ever bring him back, we will – in whatever capacity we can," Harbaugh said.

"He’s been a Raven through and through. He’s done nothing but help us be our best. He’s completely all in for everything that we’ve ever done here. I love Josh. I know he’ll do well no matter what he does going forward.”

Bynes, 25, had seemingly carved out a spot as one of the top backups on defense, and as a key special teams player. The former undrafted linebacker out of Auburn made the final tackle in Super Bowl XLVII.

But the Ravens chose to keep fellow former undrafted inside linebacker Albert McClellan and rookie undrafted inside linebacker Zachary Orr over Bynes. The decision may have come down to special teams.

Baltimore has a lot of depth at inside linebacker and the defensive duties covered with Daryl Smith, first-round pick C.J. Mosley and 2013 second-round pick Arthur Brown. Behind them, the inside linebackers are largely responsible for helping on special teams.

Bynes only had four special teams tackles last year, ranking eighth on the team. Orr made a strong impression on special teams this summer and McClellan led the Ravens with 12 special teams tackles last season.

Baltimore released Cox on Saturday as part of the cuts to 53, but an AFC South team expressed interest in signing Cox, according to The Baltimore Sun. The Ravens quickly picked him back up.

Cox played well in the Ravens’ preseason finale in New Orleans, notching three tackles and one pass deflection in limited work. Cox was cut last week by the Minnesota Vikings, and the Ravens scooped him up.

He signed a big four-year, $20 million deal last offseason with San Diego, as the Chargers felt he was a long-term building block. But he struggled as a slot cornerback, and had 38 tackles and one interception in 2013. He lost his starting spot down the stretch and was cut in March.

Now Cox is with his fourth team in the past two years.

“There are just adjustments you have to make," Cox said. "You come into a new organization and it’s a whole new playbook. It’s adjusting on the fly. It’s about taking in the information so you can play fast.”

Cox previously played well in Jacksonville as an outside cornerback. He was a Pro Bowl alternate in 2010, and had a career-high 60 tackles with four interceptions in 2012.

A former third-round pick out of William & Mary, Cox intercepted former Indianapolis Colts quarterback Peyton Manning in his first NFL game in 2009.

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