Re: Dumervil goes to the Ravens
posted at 3/24/2013 4:41 PM EDT
Elvis Dumervil agrees to contract with Baltimore Ravens
POSTED: 03/24/2013 02:33:59 PM MDT
By Mike Klis
Once again, the Baltimore Ravens have defeated the Broncos.
Elvis Dumervil, one of the best defensive ends in Broncos history, has agreed to a multiyear contract with the Ravens, according to two NFL sources. Dumervil's departure occurs 10 weeks after Baltimore stunned the Broncos, 38-35 in double-overtime of a second-round AFC playoff game on a below-zero windchill Saturday afternoon.
A blustery snowstorm greeted Denver on Saturday when the Broncos learned Dumervil and his 63½ sacks were moving on.
The Broncos are expected to focus on signing defensive end John Abraham, who had 10 sacks and six forced fumbles for the Atlanta Falcons last season — or just one less sack than Dumervil. Former Indianapolis Colt Dwight Freeney is also a possibility if the Broncos can't reach an agreement with Abraham.
Abraham and Freeney visited the Broncos on Thursday.
Dumvervil's departure brings an end to one of the most bizarre transaction debacles in NFL history. It started when the Broncos asked Dumervil to take a pay cut. He made $14 million in 2011, $14 million in 2012 and the Broncos didn't want to pay him another $12 million in 2013, not when a free-agent market correction gave the likes of Cliff Avril, who like Dumervil had 20½ sacks the past two years, a two-year, $13 million contract with Seattle.
Avril's contract set Dumervil's market value as the Broncos and Ravens were each working off the guideline of paying approximately $13 million through the first two seasons.
It was the story behind Dumervil's free-agent eligibility, though, that had people around the country chatting around office coffee machines. After nearly two weeks of protracted negotiations regarding the Broncos' proposed pay cut, Dumervil and his agent Marty Magid finally agreed to take a first-year 33 percent salary reduction to $8 million.
The agreement was communicated 35 minutes before the signature page to Dumervil's revised contract needed to be at the NFL offices in New York by 2 p.m. March 15.
But the exchange of faxes between Broncos' contract negotiator Mike Sullivan in Englewood to Magid in Philadelphia to Dumervil in Miami and back to the Broncos' headquarters took too long. The signature page did not reach the Broncos' office, much less the league's fax machine, by the 2 p.m. deadline.
The missed deadline forced the Broncos to terminate Dumervil's original contract if the team was to avoid guaranteeing his $12 million salary.
With his contract terminated, Dumervil became a free agent. Several teams expressed interest but only the Broncos and Ravens made offers.
Dumervil chose to move on in large part because of the personal pitches he received from his former linebacker's coach Don "Wink" Martindale, new pass-rushing partner Terrell Suggs and head coach John Harbaugh.
Martindale was the Broncos' linebackers coach in 2009 when Dumervil recorded a career-best 17 sacks that led the NFL. Dumervil played outside linebacker in what was a new 3-4 defensive system for the Broncos that year. He will play outside linebacker again, with Suggs on the other side, in Baltimore's 3-4 defense