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Ravens Release Three


The Ravens released tight end Xavier Lee, guard Brandon Barnes and punter Benajmin Dato, trimming their roster by three with less than a month before teams must get below the NFL-mandated limit of 80 players.

Lee came to Baltimore as a converted quarterback out of Florida State, earning a free agent contract after a solid tryout. At 6-foot-4, 235 pounds, Lee had the requisite size to move to tight end, a position of interest to the Ravens considering minicamp injuries to Quinn Sypniewski, Lee Vickers and Scott Kuhn left the team thin.

Lee played in 19 games (6 starts) as a Seminole, finishing his career 155-of-302 passing for 2,323 yards, 15 touchdowns and 11 interceptions.

Barnes, of Grand Valley State, was competing among a deep group of interior offensive linemen. He was also a promising rookie free agent after earning the Gene Upshaw Award in 2007, given to the best offensive lineman in the NCAA Division-II ranks.

Dato excelled as a punter and kickoff specialist in a four-year career at Fordham. A two-time All-America honoree who set Fordham's career punting average record (44.6 ypp), as well as the single-season punting yards record (2,992) during his senior campaign, Dato faced a tough battle with incumbent punter Sam Koch, whom the Ravens drafted in 2006.

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