Ravens LT Ronnie Stanley Addresses Pay Cut, Playing Future

Throughout the 2023 season, Ronnie Stanley dealt with a lingering knee injury which kept him from playing at full health and added further to his missed time. The longtime Ravens left tackle faced an uncertain future entering free agency, but he agreed to a contract revision to remain in Baltimore for 2024.

Stanley and the Ravens agreed to a restructured pact in March, with the 30-year-old reducing his base salary and lowering his cap hit in the process. Incentives and bonuses are present to allow him to recoup that money, but the deal also included making 2024 the final non-void season of the pact. As a result, Stanley enters the coming campaign as a pending free agent. When speaking about his situation, he addressed his mindset regarding the pay cut.

“I just wouldn’t have personally felt good about leaving Baltimore on that note,” Stanley said of potentially being a cap casualty when speaking with The Athletic’s Jeff Zrebiec (subscription required). “I want to play here my whole career, but even if I’m saying I’ll play one more year for a lot less, it’s because, if this is my last year, I want to go out on a high note. I want to play at the level that I know I can play at. The time that I missed, it would be something that I would have regretted.”

A key factor for the Ravens’ new-look offensive line will be the play of Stanley, a Pro Bowl and All-Pro performer in 2019. He has missed considerable time since then due to ankle and knee injuries, something which has left the Ravens shorthanded on the blindside and led to questions about their long-term plans at the position. Baltimore selected Roger Rosengarten in the second round of this year’s draft, and he could take on the starting right tackle role as early as Week 1 of his rookie season. In the event Stanley were to depart on the open market next spring, Rosengarten – who protected southpaw quarterback Michael Penix Jr.‘s blindside in college – would be a candidate to replace him on the left side. Stanley does not see 2024 as his final NFL campaign, however.

“No, 100 percent, I want to keep playing,” the Notre Dame alum added. “There’s no doubt in my mind. For personal reasons, I view it as a [key] year. I want to personally refuse to have a year like last year… It’s not because it’s the last year on my deal. It’s more because as a competitor, I don’t like not playing to my capability.”

A healthy season from Stanley – who noted his knee has continued to improve this offseason – would help his free agent stock either on a new Ravens pact or a deal sending him elsewhere for the first time in his career. Given the turnover Baltimore has experienced up front, a consistent presence on the blindside would help the team take a step further from last year’s AFC title game loss.

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