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:
RAVEN BOUND!!!!!!!!!!— Eric Weddle (@weddlesbeard) March 14, 2016
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.
Bruce Irvin, who signed with the Raiders earlier in the offseason, commented on his failed recruitment of Weddle:
Raider nation I tried! We still Gon have town bidness turnt every Sunday!— Bruce Irvin (@BIrvin_WVU11) March 14, 2016
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.
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:
More likely Lewis. Weddle and Lewis are both FS. Hill is more the class SS. https://t.co/JM42E6I76u— Jason Cole (@JasonColeBR) March 14, 2016
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.