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Marshal Yanda handles switch from RG to LG like Pro Bowl player he is

Marshal Yanda handles switch from RG to LG like Pro Bowl player he is

As the Ravens deal with offensive line issues, Marshal Yanda continues to show why he is a special player.

Yanda moved from right guard to left guard against the Cowboys on Sunday, to offset the impact of playing with an injured right shoulder. As usual, Yanda was excellent. Most players would have far more difficulty making that switch, but most players are not Yanda, a five-time Pro Bowler.

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“He kind of looked like he’s played it all along,” said Ravens coach John Harbaugh. “He didn’t have any problems in there. It was a good move for us.”

Harbaugh said Yanda made moving from the right side to the left side far easier than it was.

“I don’t know if it’s quite as drastic as this, but in some ways, it’s like you’re a lefty all of those years, and now you have to go over to the right of the plate and hit,” Harbaugh said. “You’re going to play golf the other way. You’re going to play tennis the other way. I don’t think it’s that drastic, but it’s different. You have your other hand down. You have your other foot back and everything is backwards; you’re setting to the left instead of to the right. All the plays are flipped…It just shows you what a phenomenal athlete he is and how determined he is and really what a good football player he is.”

With left guard Alex Lewis (high ankle sprain) expected to miss at least a few more weeks, expect the Ravens to continue starting Yanda at left guard. There is no doubt he can handle it.

More Ravens: HARBAUGH GIVES INJURY UPDATES

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Ravens are releasing safety Tony Jefferson after three seasons in Baltimore

Ravens are releasing safety Tony Jefferson after three seasons in Baltimore

The Ravens are releasing safety Tony Jefferson after he spent three years in Baltimore, the team confirmed Friday.

The NFL Network's Ian Rapoport was first with the news.

“This is the worst part of this business,” general manager Eric DeCosta said in a statement released by the team. “Tony is the consummate teammate and someone who is respected by everyone for his leadership, determination, humility and toughness. He’s a friend to all and a true Raven.

"We know he’s going to beat this injury, and we will be cheering for him all along the way. We wish the very best to Tony and his family.”

 

 

The safety suffered a knee injury against the Steelers in Week 5 and was out for the remainder of the season. He was replaced by Chuck Clark, who shined in his new role and received a three-year contract extension on Monday as a result. 

The Ravens will save $7 million by releasing the 28-year-old safety. He originally had a cap hit of $11.65 million for the 2020 season and will have a dead cap hit of $4.65 million. 

Jefferson started each of the 35 games he played in Baltimore and registered a total of 174 tackles and two interceptions across his three seasons. He played nearly every defensive snap before his injury, only coming off the field during the blowout over the Dolphins in Week 1. 

He spent the first four seasons of his career in Arizona before he left for Baltimore and a four-year, 34 million dollar contract. 

According to overthecap.com, the Ravens will be left with a touch over $31 million in cap space after Jefferson’s release. In an offseason with Matthew Judon as a free agent, Jefferson’s release gives them a little bit more flexibility with their offseason plans. 

The Ravens now have Earl Thomas and Clark as the team’s two top safeties, but there are still questions that persist for the depth at that position with Jordan Richards, who recently signed a one-year contract extension, and DeShon Elliott as the team’s backups currently under contract. Brandon Carr, who played safety down the stretch for the team, has a team option for 2020. 

While the safety position certainly isn’t a need for the Ravens at this juncture, there will almost assuredly need to be some younger talent added to the position. 

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Ravens offensive lineman James Hurst suspended for violating NFL’s performance-enhancing substances policy

Ravens offensive lineman James Hurst suspended for violating NFL’s performance-enhancing substances policy

The Ravens will be without one of their backup offensive linemen to start the 2020 season, as James Hurst was suspended by the NFL for four games without pay after he violated the NFL’s policy on performance-enhancing substances.

Hurst made two starts and appeared in all 16 games for the Ravens last season. He played a total of 194 offensive snaps as a utility offensive lineman, predominantly used as a swing tackle and offensive guard.

Hurst, 28, who signed a four-year contract extension with the Ravens in 2018, is owed $8 million in base salary over the next two seasons, both of which carry a cap hit of $5.25 million.

He also has a dead cap hit of $2.5 million in 2020 and 1.25 in 2021, should the team decide to move on from the former North Carolina Tar Heel. The team would save 2.75 million dollars in 2020 should they release him.

Hurst has played 90 total games in his career in six years in the NFL, all of which were with the Ravens. 

The offensive line is slowly becoming more of a need for the Ravens with Hurst’s suspension. That’s in addition to Matt Skura’s recovery from a knee injury and the potential of Marshal Yanda’s retirement.

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