As the Ravens continued to make moves to bolster their defense, two incumbent members of their Super Bowl team officially signed their respective tenders on Wednesday.
Defensive lineman Arthur Jones signed his second-round tender worth $2.02 million for the 2013 season. This means that other teams may no longer negotiate with Jones in an effort to sign him to an offer sheet and potentially pluck him away from Baltimore.
In his third NFL season, Jones emerged as a viable threat along the defensive line as he made six starts and finished the year with 47 tackles and 4 1/2 sacks. He will compete with veteran free-agent additions Chris Canty and Marcuse Spears for playing time along the defensive line as it’s been speculated that Pro Bowl defensive tackle Haloti Ngata will move inside to play more nose tackle this season.
After taking Jones in the fifth round of the 2010 draft from Syracuse, the Ravens could still explore a contract extension for the 6-foot-3, 315-pound lineman as he is scheduled to become an unrestricted free agent following the 2013 season.
Linebacker Albert McClellan also signed his exclusive-rights tender on Wednesday, which was only a formality considering players with less than three accrued seasons own no negotiating rights. Often overshadowed by teammates, McClellan started 12 games at the strong-side linebacker position this season, finishing with 42 tackles and one sack.
A rookie free agent from Marshall who spent the 2010 season on the practice squad, McClellan is an underrated member of the Baltimore defense with versatility that includes the ability to play all four linebacker positions. Coach John Harbaugh told reporters at the league meetings in Arizona last week that the Ravens may elect to have McClellan focus on the inside linebacker position due to the exits of Ray Lewis and Dannell Ellerbe.
McClellan is also one of the best special-teams players on the roster, finishing with seven special-teams tackles and a forced fumble in 2012.