Jameel McClain contract: Ravens LB takes a pay cut

Andy Lyons

With the possibility of missing a large portion of the upcoming season, McClain has agreed to a $1.5 million pay cut for 2013.

Injured Baltimore Ravens linebacker Jameel McClain has taken a $1.5 million pay cut, clearing up additional salary cap space to use should the team continue to make roster moves in the buildup to the regular season, according to the Baltimore Sun.

McClain's salary for 2013 drops from $3 million to $1.5 million, while his cap hit sinks from $4.2 million to $2.7 and provides the Ravens with $5.529 million worth of wiggle room under the NFL's cap limit.

McClain remains restricted by a spinal cord contusion he suffered back in December against the Washington Redskins, and was placed on the physically unable to perform list on the second day of training camp. X-rays still show a small bruise on the linebacker's spine, and the team has stated it will not clear him to play until the injury is completely healed.

It seems likely McClain will begin the regular season on the PUP list, and could possibly end up on the injured reserve list.

After the recent signings of tight end Dallas Clark and receiver Brandon Stokley, the Ravens may be clearing space for any extra moves they may need to make between now and the beginning of the regular season. As Jason Butt at Baltimore Beat Down laments, the pay cut is an unfortunate necessity in the big business of NFL football:

As tough as it is to cut the pay of an injured player, the Ravens may wind up needing that money down the road. If McClain is unavailable for the majority of the season, then it could be tough for the front office to give him a full $3 million. Plus, $1.5 million for a season of rehab is nothing to sneeze at.

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