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Ravens sign RB Gus Edwards to two-year contract extension

The Ravens have signed running back Gus Edwards to a two-year contract extension, the team announced Monday.

Ravens general manager Eric DeCosta said in March that Edwards, a restricted free agent, would be on the 2021 team “one way or the other.” Soon after, he received a second-round tender from the Ravens worth $3.4 million, and is now signed through 2023. The deal is worth $10 million, according to media reports.

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With Edwards’ extension and J.K. Dobbins entering his second year in Baltimore, the Ravens have one of the NFL’s most productive running back tandems under contract for at least the next three seasons. Together, they combined for 1,528 rushing yards on 278 carries (5.5 yards per carry) and 15 rushing touchdowns last season.

Over three years in Baltimore, Edwards has 2,152 rushing yards and 194 receiving yards in 43 games, including 13 starts. According to Pro-Football-Reference, Edwards and Cleveland Browns star Nick Chubb are the only two players in NFL history who have started their career with three straight seasons of 700-plus rushing yards and at least 5 yards per carry.

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“Determined — that’s how he is,” coach John Harbaugh said in December. “He’s been that way from the first day that he got here. His demeanor really hasn’t changed. He’s a straightforward kind of a guy [with his] work ethic, personality, professionalism. He has a lot of talent.”

Edwards’ path to NFL riches was unlikely. The Staten Island, New York, native started his college career at Miami, finished it at Rutgers, went undrafted in 2018 and failed to make the Ravens’ season-opening 53-man roster. But after being promoted to the active roster in mid-October, Edwards became the Ravens’ first rookie running back with consecutive 100-yard rushing games since Jamal Lewis in 2000.

As the Ravens rumbled to an NFL single-season rushing record in 2019, Edwards earned the nickname “Gus the Bus,” led the league in first-down rate and finished third in yards per carry (5.3). Last season, he averaged 5 yards per carry and finished behind only Chubb and Dobbins in rush yards over expected per attempt, according to the NFL’s Next Gen Stats. He also had his most productive season as a receiver, finishing with nine catches for 129 yards.

“He brings a physicality,” Harbaugh said. “He’s a downhill runner, even outside. So I don’t want to say he’s just an inside runner, because he’s not. But his style, it really puts stress on the defense going that way, and then he works off of that.”

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