Void deadline passes without extensions for Zeitler, three other Ravens

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Monday came and went with the contracts of four Ravens players voiding, which will leave just over $8.3 million in dead money on the 2024 salary cap.

That doesn’t guarantee the departures of right guard Kevin Zeitler, running back Gus Edwards, safety Geno Stone, and cornerback Rock Ya-Sin this offseason, but all will now become free agents. Zeitler, the most notable of the four who was named to the first Pro Bowl of his career last month, made his preference clear the day after the AFC championship game loss to Kansas City, describing the 2023 season as feeling “unfinished.”

“I want to be back as a Baltimore Raven. There’s no doubt about that,” Zeitler said. “I loved my time here. I love the people here. I love my teammates here. I want to keep playing with them. Hopefully, that business side of football can get figured out nice and quick, and we can get that taken care of.”

Pro Football Focus graded the 33-year-old Zeitler 15th overall out of 79 qualified guards and second in pass blocking in 2023. He signed a three-year, $22.5 million contract in 2021, but the Ravens restructured his deal last offseason to add void years, a measure that created 2023 cap space that was needed because of the uncertain status of quarterback Lamar Jackson before he signed a five-year, $260 million contract last April. The voids leave $4.268 million in dead money on this year’s cap, regardless of whether Baltimore is able to sign Zeitler to a new contract.

Edwards will turn 29 in April and set career highs with 810 rushing yards and 13 touchdowns this past season, but he averaged a career-low 4.1 yards per carry while filling a bigger role after J.K. Dobbins tore an Achilles tendon in the 2023 opener. The voids in Edwards’ deal will leave $1.84 million in dead money on the 2024 cap.

Stone led the AFC with seven interceptions in a breakout season that included a career-high 951 defensive snaps and 11 starts. However, with starting safeties Kyle Hamilton and Marcus Williams both under contract for multiple seasons, Stone is expected to seek a more prominent role for more money elsewhere ahead of his age-26 season.

“I’m just going to wait and see. It’s something I’ll have to talk to my agent [about], and we’ll talk with teams about,” Stone said last month. “I’m not going to think about it right now. At the end of the day, I know where my value is and stuff like that, but it is what it is. I appreciate this organization. My role is my role here, and whatever options I have next, whatever it is — if I’m here or not here or somewhere else — I’ll still be me.”

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The void year included on Stone’s one-year deal signed last spring leaves $600,000 in dead money on next season’s cap.

Signed last spring to compete for a starting job, Ya-Sin saw his playing time diminish over the course of the 2023 season while third-year defensive back Brandon Stephens emerged as Baltimore’s most reliable starting cornerback. Ya-Sin, 27, will count for $1.6 million in dead money on the 2024 salary cap.

Of the other players who had void years attached to their contracts entering the 2023 season, nose tackle Michael Pierce and wide receiver Nelson Agholor signed extensions prior to Monday’s deadline. Wide receiver Odell Beckham reportedly restructured his one-year, $15 million deal to eliminate the void seasons last month, but the new structure all but guarantees his release if the sides don’t work out an extension by next month.

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