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Owners Approve Defensive Communication


With NFL owners approving a radio device for defenses, Ravens fans - and opposing teams - can expect Rex Ryan to be a little less active on the sideline next year.

Just as a quarterback can communicate with the offensive coordinator for play calls and defensive alerts, a defender will now be able to hear their coordinator through one designated helmet.

Twenty-five of the league's 32 teams approved the resolution, up from the 22 votes at last year's owners' meetings. It takes nine negative votes to defeat a proposal.

For the Ravens, it likely means that safety Ed Reed would wear the helmet designated with a green dot to communicate with Ryan. As a safety, Reed doesn't deliver the same head-on collisions that middle linebacker Ray Lewis does play after play, while Reed also is more apt to stay on the field for every play.

Lewis and fellow linebacker Bart Scott have been proponents of a defensive communication device since the idea surged to the forefront in the wake of 2007's Spygate incident, expressing strong interest on their respective radio shows.

Meanwhile, the owners decided to table the proposal to force players to cut or tuck their hair so it doesn't obscure a nameplate or jersey number until the next set of meetings in May.


In other news, safety Dawan Landry was the third-highest earner in player performance-based pay this year, which awards lower-salaried players bonuses for extra time on the field.

The system creates a fund used as a supplemental form of player compensation based on a comparison of playing time to salary.

Landry started all 16 games for the Ravens last season.

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