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Pass Rusher Steven Means Signs His Tender

Ravens OLB Steven Means, who the team seems high on, has signed his Exclusive Rights Tender.

Steven Means as a Raven
Steven Means as a Raven
Mitch Stringer-USA TODAY Sports

Baltimore Ravens OLB Steven Means is officially under contract for the 2015 season.

Means, a 6"3 260 lb outside linebacker, was drafted in the 5th round of the 2013 NFL draft by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, and spent 1 season as a 4-3 defensive end on their roster,appearing in 10 games. He was cut mid 2014 and picked up for the practice squad by the Ravens in early October after the Houston Texans signed away John Simon. Means was active for 1 game as a Raven last year, after being added to the roster when Rick Wagner was moved to IR.

Means played collegiately at the University of Buffalo. Over 4 seasons, he had 185 career tackles, 29.5 for a loss, 18.5 sacks, three forced fumbles, three fumble recoveries, two interceptions and five blocked kicks in college.

Harbaugh has publicly talked up Means specifically. At the Pre-Draft Press Conference in April (Click here for full transcript),  he was mentioned as someone to look out for as a young pass rusher:

A year ago we wondered about right tackle, and you knew about T Rick Wagner. Who are some of the guys that you’re excited to see get an opportunity this coming year?(Scott Garceau)

(HARBAUGH) "I’m excited about our young guys. I don’t know if I have the list right in front of me, in all honesty, but there’s not one guy who I don’t think who’s going to be a good player. There’s nobody who I feel like he can’t play. [Michael] Campanaro, you take a guy kind of off the top of your head right there, and [Kamar] Aiken – you have the young receivers out there. Obviously, those guys are going to be challenged, and they need to take it to another level. We have a couple young corners in the program who it’s going to be up to them, and they’re big, long guys that can run around. We’ll see how those guys do. I can’t wait for the OTAs. That’s when we’ll start seeing what kind of progress they’ve made. Of course, the young defensive tackles, they’re going to take it to another level. We have a young pass rusher – Steven Means is a guy just to throw out there – we’ll see how he does, but there’s not a guy in this room that probably knows who he is except for, maybe, the four of us. He’s a guy that’s going to be interesting to see how he develops. We’re always bringing in young players. Guys are going to leave. We have to put guys in under those guys before they leave, and hopefully, those guys blossom at the right time."

Looking forward to seeing what he can do, given more opportunities with Pernell McPhee now in a Chicago Bears uniform. His primary competition for playing time, should he make the roster, is 4th round rookie Za'Darius Smith, out of Kentucky who is also a converted DE.

As they say in the Castle, "Next Man Up!" Good luck Steven!