Eric Weddle to Ravens: Latest Contract Details, Comments and Reaction

Matt FitzgeraldCorrespondent IIIMarch 14, 2016

SAN DIEGO, CA - DECEMBER 20: Eric Weddle #32 of the San Diego Chargers greets fans after the San Diego Chargers defeated the Miami Dolphins 30-14 at Qualcomm Stadium on December 20, 2015 in San Diego, California. (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)
Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images

Eric Weddle had a messy ending to his time with the San Diego Chargers, so it's no surprise the free-agent star opted to head elsewhere for the next phase of his career.

Kevin Acee of the San Diego Union-Tribune reported Monday that Weddle will reportedly join the Baltimore Ravens after spending his first nine NFL seasons in San Diego. ESPN's Field Yates confirmed the news.

Weddle took to Twitter to announce his decision:

ESPN's Adam Schefter reported Weddle's contract is a four-year, $26 million deal with $13 million due in the first two years. NFL Network's Ian Rapoport reported Weddle will make $9 million in the first year of his contract.

However, Mike Garafolo of Fox Sports reported the deal is for four years and $29 million. CBS Sports' Jason La Canfora specified Weddle's $29 million in salary features $3 million in incentives.

Weddle signed with the Ravens despite interest from the Dallas Cowboys, Oakland Raiders and Pittsburgh Steelers, per Acee.

Bruce Irvin, who signed with the Raiders earlier in the offseason, commented on his failed recruitment of Weddle:

Once the 2015 regular season concluded, Weddle said he "probably won't ever speak to [the Chargers] again," per the San Diego Union-Tribune's Michael Gehlken.

It seemed clear Weddle would leave San Diego after the team placed him on injured reserve against his wishes and fined him for watching his daughter perform at halftime of the Chargers' home finale.

Since Weddle fled San Diego, look for the Chargers to bolster their secondary at some point in the draft. They could choose someone like Florida State's Jalen Ramsey or Florida cornerback Vernon Hargreaves III with the third overall pick, or they could address the defensive backfield in the later rounds.

But the Chargers may opt to focus on the front seven considering they finished 27th in defending the run this past year and already have Jason Verrett as a versatile lockdown cornerback.

Losing Weddle leaves Verrett and the rest of San Diego's defensive backs more susceptible in coverage, though.

Bleacher Report's Jason Cole weighed in on what Weddle's arrival means for the Ravens roster:

Baltimore is bound to treat the 31-year-old better, as he presents tremendous value to its defense. Weddle is among the elite free safeties in the game, has seldom missed any action and brings leadership intangibles to the Ravens secondary in addition to his steady gridiron production.

Ever since the legendary Ed Reed left Baltimore, the team hasn't found a viable solution at his position. But that's precisely what Weddle represents.