OWINGS MILLS, Md. — The Baltimore Ravens reached a one-year deal with middle linebacker Jake Ryan, a source confirmed.
Ryan, 28, who has spent most of his NFL career with the Green Bay Packers, is considered an effective run-stopper when healthy, but he hasn’t played a defensive snap since 2017.
He provides much-needed experience for the middle of Baltimore’s defense. The Ravens are still expected to address inside linebacker in the draft and could do so in the first round if Oklahoma’s Kenneth Murray or LSU’s Patrick Queen is available at the No. 28 overall pick.
Baltimore looked to bring in a veteran at middle linebacker after losing Josh Bynes (Bengals) and Patrick Onwuasor (Jets), who both signed elsewhere in free agency. The only inside linebackers on the Ravens’ roster are L.J. Fort, Chris Board and Otaro Alaka, who have combined for 11 starts.
Ryan, a fourth-round pick by the Packers in 2015, has dealt with a knee injury the past two seasons. In 2018, he tore his ACL in training camp with the Packers and missed the entire season. Last year, he signed a two-year, $7.5 million contract with the Jacksonville Jaguars but had a setback with the knee. Ryan played in only two games in 2019, exclusively on special teams, and his option was not picked up by Jacksonville this offseason.
In four NFL seasons, Ryan has used his size and physicality to develop into a reliable defender against the run, but he has struggled in coverage. He totaled 213 tackles (including 15 for loss), one sack, one forced fumble and two fumble recoveries in 45 career games (27 starts).
The NFL Network first reported news of Ryan’s deal with the Ravens.