Eric Weddle says he’ll play for Ravens or retire
"If [the Ravens] want to go in a different direction, I'm not going to go play for another team," Weddle said Monday, a day after the Ravens' season ended in a 23-17 loss to the Los Angeles Chargers. "It's not where I'm at in my career. It's either play my last year here and that will be it and enjoy it, or this has been it. It's pretty simple. I'm a simple kind of guy."
Weddle, 34, has reached the Pro Bowl six times, including all three seasons in Baltimore. Considered the quarterback of the NFL's top-ranked defense, Weddle finished third in tackles with 68, but he didn't record an interception for the first time since 2015.
Coaches have talked about how Weddle's value goes beyond statistics. Defensive coordinator Don "Wink" Martindale referred to Weddle as a "football savant" for how he confuses quarterbacks by disguising coverages.
Weddle has one more year remaining on his contract, and he's scheduled to make $6.5 million. If Baltimore cuts him, it can create $7.5 million in cap space.
"I'm going to go speak to Eric [DeCosta, new Ravens GM] and see what he sees with myself and the team," Weddle said. "If he wants me back, I'm here. If not, it's all good. I understand it and I'll just ride off in the sunset. I still have a desire to play and I feel that I can still affect the game and dominate games. Either way, I'm good with whatever."
Weddle, a second-round pick by the Chargers in 2007, spent his first nine seasons with the Chargers before having a falling-out with the organization. He signed a four-year, $26 million contract with the Ravens in 2016, and he earned a $1 million incentive this season after he was named to the Pro Bowl and Baltimore reached the postseason.