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Report: Jameel McClain Takes Pay Cut

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The Baltimore Sun reports that inside linebacker Jameel McClain accepted a pay cut for the 2014 season.

The Baltimore Sun reported Jameel McClain took a $1.5 million pay cut on Thursday.
The Baltimore Sun reported Jameel McClain took a $1.5 million pay cut on Thursday.
Rob Carr

Ravens inside linebacker Jameel McClain has accepted a sizable pay cut for the 2014 season, according to Aaron Wilson at the Baltimore Sun.

<blockquote class="twitter-tweet"><p>Jameel McClain accepted a $1.5 million paycut from $3 million base salary down to $1.5 million. Team salary-cap space is now $5.529 million</p>&mdash; Aaron Wilson (@RavensInsider) <a href="https://twitter.com/RavensInsider/statuses/368057939510054912">August 15, 2013</a></blockquote>
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In addition, this means McClain's cap figure dropped from $4.2 million to $2.7 for the 2013 season. McClain hasn't been able to practice this preseason due to a spinal cord contusion sustained against Washington late last season.

Though changes were made to McClain's deal for 2013, Wilson added that McClain's base salary for 2014 remains the same.

<blockquote class="twitter-tweet"><p>Under Jameel McClain&#39;s three-year, $10.5 million contract, no changes made to 2014 base salary, which remains $3.2 million nonguaranteed</p>&mdash; Aaron Wilson (@RavensInsider) <a href="https://twitter.com/RavensInsider/statuses/368060987699499008">August 15, 2013</a></blockquote>
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Reading between the lines here:

Either,

1) McClain's status for 2013 now is further clouded in doubt, seeing that he was viewed as a starter. Teams don't cut starting linebacker's base salaries in half if they're expected to contribute in that capacity for the upcoming season. Bryant McKinnie received a $1 million pay cut a year ago when the Ravens decided he was no longer a starter during the preseason.

2) The Ravens are looking at yet another move and need to free up even more salary cap space for it. Before McClain's pay cut, the Ravens had $4.029 million available. An additional $1.5 million certainly helps, even though there aren't any high-priced free agents available.

And the end of possibility No. 2 leads me to believe possibility No. 1 is the underlying reason. 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.

Injuries are a part of the sport, after all. And like any industry, business is business.

Follow me on twitter: @JasonHButt