The emotional leader of the Ravens defense is coming back to the team. Pro Bowl linebacker Ray Lewis has come back to the club after signing a deal with the club that is being reported by some sites as three years and $22 million. The club also added free agent center Matt Birk, he’s coming to the team from the Minnesota Vikings.
“From beginning to end as a Raven. … Wow!” To be with the same team with the same fans for an entire career, that doesn’t happen in the NFL,” Lewis said. “I don’t think an athlete can have a greater legacy than to be able to stay in one place for an entire career.”
While it was thought that the Ravens were going to lose Lewis, the team instead lost linebacker Bart Scott to the Jets, and then had to franchise LB Terrell Suggs to keep him from going free agent to another team.
“We got better today. Our football team got better. I am very happy,” general manager Ozzie Newsome said. “This will allow Ray to finish his career as a Raven.”
Birk will replace last year’s starting center, Jason Brown, who left via free agency to sign a five-year, $37.5 million contract with the St. Louis Rams. He was going back and forth between going back to the Vikings or moving to the Ravens, and eventually decided on Baltimore.
“To add a player like Matt, who will also give us outstanding leadership, makes us a better team,” coach John Harbaugh said. “We’re not standing pat. We’re moving forward and getting better.”