FEBRUARY 2, 1:08pm: The Ravens have officially released Cody, the team announced today (via Twitter).
JANUARY 23, 1:00pm: Peter Schaffer, Cody’s agent, says his client’s dog died due to worms and “there was no animal cruelty” involved, per Mike Garafolo of Fox Sports (TwitLonger link).
“If this affects at all my client’s ability to get a job, I’m going to do everything in my legal power to protect his rights,” Schaffer said. The agent also spoke to Aaron Wilson about the issue, suggesting that the league has created an “atmosphere of hysteria that tramples on due process rights” and that the state attorney should be focusing on “real issues” (all Twitter links).
11:25am: Aaron Wilson of the Baltimore Sun provides the likely motive for the Ravens’ decision to cut ties with Cody rather than waiting for his contract to expire. According to Wilson, the defensive tackle is under investigation for animal cruelty, and the case is being discussed with the Baltimore County State attorney’s office. The Ravens are aware of the allegations against Cody, who has yet to be charged with a crime, says Wilson.
10:48am: The Ravens will terminate the contract of defensive tackle Terrence Cody following the Super Bowl, the team announced today (via Twitter). The move will allow Cody to hit the open market, making him free to sign a new deal with any of the league’s 32 teams.
After starting all 16 regular season games for the Ravens in 2011, Cody played a part-time role for the club over the next two seasons, then barely saw the field at all in 2014 while he recovered from hip surgery. Cody began the season on the physically unable to perform list, and though he was activated in early November, the 26-year-old just appeared in one game for Baltimore, playing nine defensive snaps in Week 14 against Miami.
Assuming Cody doesn’t re-sign with the Ravens, it’s a disappointing end to a stint that began when he was selected by the club in the second round of the 2010 draft. It’s also a slightly premature end — having been on a one-year contract, Cody would have been eligible for free agency in March anyway. By releasing him from his contract early, the Ravens will allow the veteran defensive lineman to get a headstart on finding a new job.