The Ravens also signed former Raiders first-round safety Michael Huff earlier this year to a three-year, $6 million contract this offseason.

"Love it!" Huff wrote on Twitter when news broke that McClain would be joining the Ravens.

By adding McClain, the Ravens aren't necessarily pressed into a need to draft an inside linebacker in the first round with the 32nd overall pick, which had been previously rumored by draft analysts.

"You’re getting an inside ‘backer who’s relatively young with ability," ESPN draft analyst Mel Kiper Jr. said during a conference call. "There’s been several Alabama players to come through this program over the years from Le’Ron McClain to Jarret Johnson to Terrence Cody, Courtney Upshaw last year. So, they’ve obviously done well with Alabama players, obviously with Ozzie Newsome’s connection there.

"[Inside linebacker] is a big hole. Obviously it’s a key need area for them still at inside linebacker. They need one, maybe two, but it allows them to not have to force something if there’s not a player there. They can pretty much not have to worry about saying, ‘We have to have this need filled via the draft.’"

End zone

The San Diego Chargers have made a preliminary inquiry to veteran free agent offensive tackle Bryant McKinnie, according to a source.

No signing or visit is imminent and it's unlikely that McKinnie will strike a deal with any team until after the NFL draft.

The Ravens have remained in touch with McKinnie, so the door isn't closed on a potential return for the former Pro Bowl blocker.

awilson@baltsun.com
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