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By Matt Vensel and The Baltimore Sun | April 17, 2012
The Ravens announced Tuesday afternoon that restricted free agent Dannell Ellerbe had re-signed with the team. The inside linebacker was given a second-round restricted tender by the Ravens last month. Under the second-round tender, Ellerbe will make $1.93 million this season, his fourth in the league. Ellerbe, 26, was signed as an undrafted rookie free agent before the 2009 season. He has started in seven games over the past three seasons, making 90 tackles and recording one sack in 33 career games.
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By Aaron Wilson and The Baltimore Sun | January 8, 2014
The Ravens aren't traditionally averse to using the franchise tag, frequently employing the designation to avoid losing players to free agency and buy time to hammer out contracts. Nearly one year after they didn't have to use the tag before signing quarterback Joe Flacco to a $120.6 million contract last March, the Ravens' most likely franchise player candidate is tight end Dennis Pitta. It would cost the Ravens $6.7 million in salary and cap space under a one-year franchise tender.
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By Aaron Wilson and Jeff Zrebiec, The Baltimore Sun | September 12, 2012
There was a somewhat unusual sight Monday night on the Ravens' sideline. Starting inside linebacker Jameel McClain was standing on the edge of the field, watching backup Dannell Ellerbe take the majority of the workload opposite middle linebacker Ray Lewis during a 44-13 win over the Cincinnati Bengals. Signed to a three-year, $10.5 million contract in March, McClain hadn't been benched and he wasn't hurt. McClain was designated to play against obvious run formations with Ellerbe's extended playing time stemming from the Bengals' tendency to pass often.
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By Matt Vensel, The Baltimore Sun | December 12, 2013
Whether it was Ray Lewis or Dannell Ellerbe manning the middle or Jameel McClain or Josh Bynes, Ravens inside linebackers did not defend the pass well last season. Only Brendon Ayanbadejo, a special teams regular who played sparingly on defense, had a positive grade in pass coverage, according to Pro Football Focus. So when the Ravens addressed the two inside linebacker positions this offseason, the ability to cover was clearly a priority. They drafted speedy weak-side linebacker Arthur Brown in the second round of the draft and signed Daryl Smith, formerly of the Jacksonville Jaguars, to play the middle linebacker position.
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By Aaron Wilson and The Baltimore Sun | September 24, 2012
New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady won't soon forget Ravens backup inside linebacker Dannell Ellerbe . Ellerbe decked Brady in the first quarter, sacking him for a loss of 9 yards during the Ravens' 31-30 victory Sunday night at M&T Bank Stadium. And Ellerbe combined with defensive tackle Haloti Ngata to split a sack for a loss of 7 yards in the fourth quarter. "I always love to blitz when you get to come free," said Ellerbe, who finished with eight tackles and 1.5 sacks . "When the hole closes up on you, I don't like that.
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Mike Preston | October 4, 2012
Ravens inside linebacker Dannell Ellerbe laughed when he heard the question. Then he smiled. And then he smiled some more. "It feels good to roam around the yard," said Ellerbe, laughing. Ellerbe has been unleashed. After spending substantial time in head coach John Harbaugh's doghouse, suffering recurring injuries and changing defensive coordinators several times, Ellerbe seems to have found his niche in the defense. Remember, though, he has been in this situation before.
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By Edward Lee | January 24, 2013
As the Ravens prepare to meet the San Francisco 49ers in Super Bowl XLVII on Feb. 3, Dannell Ellerbe was the only player to miss Thursday's practice. The starting inside linebacker is dealing with ankle and back injuries. Four players participated on a limited basis: defensive tackle Haloti Ngata (knee), tight end Dennis Pitta (thigh), wide receiver David Reed (hamstring) and cornerback Asa Jackson (hamstring). Fourteen players on the injury report fully practiced: outside linebackers Terrell Suggs (right Achilles tendon/torn right biceps)
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By Jeff Zrebiec and Matt Vensel, The Baltimore Sun | August 19, 2012
Dannell Ellerbe thought about the question for a moment and then respectfully requested a minute to think about an appropriate answer. The truth was that it had been a long time since the Ravens' inside linebacker had last felt 100 percent, but he smiled when he finally recalled the day. "Oh, [it was] St. Louis last year," Ellerbe said following the Ravens' practice at Stevenson University. Ellerbe, 26, hurt his hamstring in the Ravens' Week 3 blowout of the Rams last season.
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By Matt Vensel | October 1, 2013
In March, amidst their offseason shopping spree, the Miami Dolphins grabbed middle linebacker Dannell Ellerbe off the shelf and shelled out $35 million with $17 million guaranteed for him at the cash register. Three months later, the Ravens pulled veteran middle linebacker Daryl Smith, who was somehow still on the open market, out of the bargain bin and gave him a cheap one-year deal worth up to $2.125 million . With Miami being the next stop on the Ravens reunion tour, as Ellerbe and the Dolphins are hosting the Ravens on Sunday, now seems like a good time to check on how Ellerbe is doing with his new team and to compare and contrast his performance with that of Smith, the new man in the middle for the Ravens.
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By Edward Lee | October 18, 2012
The most immediate beneficiary of the season-ending right triceps injury to inside linebacker Ray Lewis, Dannell Ellerbe - who is expected to make his first start of the season against the Houston Texans this Sunday - might feel inclined to try to do more. But Ellerbe said he's under no pressure to be the next Lewis. “I'm going to play the way I've been playing,” he said Thursday. “I'm not trying to fill the shoes of Ray Lewis. I'm not going to be able to do that. He's the greatest linebacker to ever play the game.
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By Matt Vensel, The Baltimore Sun | October 2, 2013
So much has changed for Dannell Ellerbe since the Super Bowl . He is in a new city wearing a different uniform for another AFC contender. He is now the leader that young players look to in key moments, instead of it being the other way around. And yes, his wallet is heavier nowadays. But every time a replay of the Super Bowl pops up, he can't help but flash back to his final run with the Ravens and feel like it all happened just yesterday. "That's something that drives me today, to get back to that position and get back to the Super Bowl and win again," said Ellerbe, now the Miami Dolphins starting middle linebacker.
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By Matt Vensel | October 1, 2013
In March, amidst their offseason shopping spree, the Miami Dolphins grabbed middle linebacker Dannell Ellerbe off the shelf and shelled out $35 million with $17 million guaranteed for him at the cash register. Three months later, the Ravens pulled veteran middle linebacker Daryl Smith, who was somehow still on the open market, out of the bargain bin and gave him a cheap one-year deal worth up to $2.125 million . With Miami being the next stop on the Ravens reunion tour, as Ellerbe and the Dolphins are hosting the Ravens on Sunday, now seems like a good time to check on how Ellerbe is doing with his new team and to compare and contrast his performance with that of Smith, the new man in the middle for the Ravens.
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By Aaron Wilson, The Baltimore Sun | September 4, 2013
The mass exodus from the Ravens roster after their Super Bowl victory was triggered by familiar culprits. The age of key veterans and a lack of salary cap space forced the Ravens into bargain-hunting mode as they overhauled a championship squad. A similar scenario probably will unfold after this season because of contractual commitments to six prominent starters. The salary cap figures for defensive tackle Haloti Ngata ($16 million), quarterback Joe Flacco ($14.8 million)
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By Matt Vensel and The Baltimore Sun | August 29, 2013
When the Ravens wrap up the preseason tonight against the St. Louis Rams, most, if not all, of their defensive starters won't play a single snap. That's OK, though. After an offseason overhaul that included the loss of two future Hall of Famers, the defense surprisingly is facing fewer questions than the Ravens offense at this point. Still, I keep getting asked about exactly how the Ravens are going to split snaps between Courtney Upshaw and Elvis Dumervil at strong-side linebacker and between Josh Bynes and Arthur Brown at weak-side linebacker.
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By Jeff Zrebiec, The Baltimore Sun | August 25, 2013
As the final round of the 2013 draft began in April and Matt Furstenburg agonized over where his NFL career would begin, the former Maryland tight end got a phone call that eased some of his anxiety. So many people - from friends and former teammates to potential future employers - had already contacted him, but the voice on the other end made this call unique. "John Harbaugh called me and said, 'We have to take a cornerback [here], but we want you," recalled Furstenburg, a three-year starter for the Terps who was one of eight undrafted free agents that survived Sunday's roster cuts.
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By Jeff Zrebiec, The Baltimore Sun | August 9, 2013
- Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco admits he's usually slow to remember the names of his new teammates, particularly the ones on defense. But there was something about the team's new veteran middle linebacker that stuck with Flacco almost immediately. "Daryl Smith, he looks really good," said Flacco, answering a question earlier this week about how the Ravens' defense is progressing. "I don't really notice those guys too much, but he's seemed to impress me for some reason. " The reason should be pretty obvious for anyone who watched the Ravens' 44-16 preseason-opening victory over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Thursday night.
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By Edward Lee | December 19, 2012
A sprained right ankle forced Marshal Yanda to snap a 44-consecutive starts streak dating back to Nov. 29, 2009. Whether the right guard can avoid back-to-back absences is a mystery. Yanda declined to put a percentage on his return for Sunday's regular-season home finale against the New York Giants and said he's unsure of his availability. “We'll see what happens,” he said prior to Wednesday's practice. “We're going to test it out this week and see how it feels.” Yanda, who was replaced in the Ravens' 34-17 loss to the Denver Broncos last Sunday, said he felt close to playing, but elected to avoid the risk of aggravating the sore ankle.
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By Edward Lee | August 3, 2012
In his first two seasons, Dannell Ellerbe went from undrafted rookie to hidden gem to injury-plagued. The Ravens inside linebacker added another label in 2011: starter. Ellerbe started in three of the four games that 13-time Pro Bowler Ray Lewis missed due to a toe injury. Ellerbe compiled 11 tackles (including a season-high seven against the Cleveland Browns on Dec. 4) in those three starts. Ellerbe, who is behind Lewis and Jameel McClain on the depth chart, doesn't wish injury on any of his teammates and is content to bide his time.
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By Aaron Wilson, The Baltimore Sun | August 6, 2013
The Ravens' overhauled defense makes its preseason debut Thursday night against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, taking on a much different look from a year ago. With Ray Lewis retired and Ed Reed , Dannell Ellerbe , Paul Kruger , Cary Williams and Bernard Pollard no longer on the roster, several newcomers will be playing for the Ravens in a game situation for the first time. That includes middle linebacker Daryl Smith , outside linebacker Elvis Dumervil , defensive lineman Chris Canty , free safety Michael Huff , rookie safety Matt Elam and inside linebacker Arthur Brown . "We're ready to hit somebody," said Smith, a former Jacksonville Jaguars starter.
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By Seth Boster, The Baltimore Sun | August 5, 2013
Brandon Copeland knows he can't be his grandfather. If the 2009 Gilman graduate is to claim a spot as an undrafted rookie free agent on the Ravens' final 53-man roster at the end of the preseason, it can't be in the way Roy Hilton joined the Baltimore Colts as a defensive end in 1965. At least, not exactly. "Now I'm at a totally different position," Copeland said recently after practice at the Under Armour Performance Center, where the former Penn defensive end is trying out as a middle linebacker.
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