Thursday, March 05, 2009
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Ravens reach agreement with Ray Lewis, Matt Birk

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[March 05, 2009]  OWINGS MILLS, Md. (AP) -- The Baltimore Ravens have agreed to terms with middle linebacker Ray Lewis on a multiyear contract. The Ravens also reached an agreement on a three-year deal with Minnesota Vikings' six-time Pro Bowl center Matt Birk.

Hardware"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."

"We have an agreement in principle with Ray Lewis," Ravens spokesman Kevin Byrne said. "It will allow Ray to finish his career as a Raven. Matt Birk agreed to a three-year contract, which will be signed in the morning."

The 10-time Pro Bowl pick had three interceptions and two fumble recoveries last season.

By keeping Lewis, the Ravens fill the void created at inside linebacker when Bart Scott signed with the New York Jets.

Birk replaces last year's starting center, Jason Brown, who signed a five-year, $37.5 million contract with the St. Louis Rams.

Lewis earned his 10th Pro Bowl this season after leading the NFL's second-ranked defense with 160 tackles. He also had 3 1/2 sacks, three interceptions and two fumble recoveries.

[Associated Press]

Copyright 2009 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.



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