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Ravens news, notes and opinions
Having signed all their draft picks except first-rounder Matt Elam, having shored up their biggest perceived weakness with the signing of linebacker Daryl Smith and with very little salary cap room to do much else, it’s hard to imagine the Ravens being too active over the next five weeks before the start of training camp. However, something clearly has to be worked out with the status of Pro Bowl fullback Vonta Leach. As my colleague Aaron Wilson reported last week, the Ravens, who took Leach’s potential successor, Kyle Juszczyk, in the fourth round of April’s draft, are expected to craft a proposal to adjust his contract, which carries a $4.33 million salary cap hit for the coming season. Leach sounds like he is prepared for the situation, telling reporters last week that, “When the situation comes, I think we’ll take care of it.” The Ravens clearly love Leach as a player and as a leader. Without knowing how Juszczyk will handle lead-blocking duties in his rookie season, they believe that Leach, probably the best lead blocker in the game, has an important place on the team. However, they also could use a little more cap flexibility and Leach’s contract may be the most realistic place to get it. It sounds like the situation could come to a head shortly. Like Anquan Boldin, Leach is a proud guy and I’d imagine trying to convince him to take a pay cut is going to be a tough sell for Ozzie Newsome and company. But it behooves both sides to work something out.
By Jeff Zrebiec, The Baltimore Sun
June 10, 2013