Tuesday, March 13, 2001

Ravens shell out for Searcy

The Associated Press

        The Baltimore Ravens and free-agent offensive tackle Leon Searcy agreed in principle on a six-year, $31.5 contract

        Searcy's free-agent visits included Cincinnati last week.

        The Ravens consider Searcy, who made the Pro Bowl in 1999, a significant upgrade to their offensive line. He would replace right tackle Harry Swayne and play opposite Jonathan Ogden, a four-time Pro Bowler considered the best tackle in the NFL.

        The Ravens on Monday lost starting center Jeff Mitchell, who signed a five-year, $15 million contract with the Carolina Panthers.

        Searcy, 31, was with the Jaguars for five seasons, earning his first Pro Bowl berth in 1999. But he missed the entire 2000 season after tearing a tendon above his right knee in training camp.

        The Jaguars cut him Feb. 28 to clear room under the NFL salary cap, beating a deadline to pay him a $6 million roster bonus. His salary would have counted $5.6 million against the cap next season.


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