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Ravens Release Safety Lardarius Webb


Lardarius Webb's time in Baltimore has come to a close, at least for now.

The Ravens informed the 31-year-old safety that he will be released after reaching a deal with former Cardinals safety Tony Jefferson.

Cutting Webb creates $5.5 million in salary cap space, according to Spotrac, which the team put towards re-signing defensive tackle Brandon Williams and acquiring free agents like Jefferson and running back Danny Woodhead.

"The longer I'm in this job, the tougher those conversations are when you have to talk to a player about waiving him," General Manager Ozzie Newsome said. "But I had a really good conversation with Lardarius. As it is with Elvis [Dumervil], and any other guys, the door is not closed [on him returning] because we need as good football players as we can."

Webb, an eight-year veteran, has spent his entire career in Baltimore. The Ravens drafted him out of Nicholls State in the third round in 2009, and he was a shining example of the Ravens finding a high-end talent out of a small school.

Webb stepped into a starting role his rookie season, but suffered a torn ACL late in the year. He returned the next year and established himself as the team's best cornerback over the course of the 2011 season. The Ravens rewarded Webb with a $50 million contract that offseason, but he tore his other ACL just six games into the 2012 season.

The two torn ACLs knocked Webb off track, but he still returned as a reliable player for the Ravens over the next four seasons. Webb actually played more games (111) since he was drafted than any other Ravens defender.

Baltimore moved Webb to safety last season and he started every game alongside veteran Eric Weddle. Webb finished the year with 73 tackles, one interception and one pass defensed. He graded as the league's 16th-best safety by Pro Football Focus.

Webb re-worked his contract by accepting a pay cut in 2015, and he was heading into the final season of that deal. He was scheduled to carry a $7.5 million cap hit this season, and his release will reportedly leave behind $2 million in dead money.

The decision to release Webb also comes after the Ravens have freed significant cap space by cutting outside linebacker Elvis Dumervil and defensive backs Shareece Wright and Kendrick Lewis.

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