Pernell McPhee Looking to Return to Ravens at OLB

Baltimore has numerous free agents at OLB

OWINGS MILLS, Md. — Pernell McPhee had some of the best years of his career with the Ravens.

He's looking to keep rolling with the team. 

McPhee is one of five outside linebackers that are unrestricted free agents. However, he has expressed a willingness to return to Baltimore, which would be helpful for the team's offseason strategy.

"The plan is to come back to Baltimore and continue to play some ball, help win a championship and build a dynasty," McPhee told Clifton. Brown, Staff Writer. "That's the goal. Myself and my agent haven't really talked about it yet. I've been chilling, taking care of my body. I'll think about things, but my thought is really just on coming back."

In addition to McPhee, Matthew Judon, Yannick Ngakoue, Tyus Bowser and Jihad Ward are also eligible to test the free-agent market. Judon, Ngakoue and Bowser might have priced themselves out of the Ravens' comfort zones and will likely test the open market.

McPhee is more focused on returning to Baltimore. 

"I'm hoping the Ravens can retain all of them, but free agency can get crazy, unpredictable," McPhee told Brown. "But one thing you have to understand. When you're playing with guys who have been in the organization and who understand your system, it makes a difference. You want to keep those guys because they know how to play like a Raven."

In 2019, McPhee was second on the team with three sacks before his season was cut short because of a triceps injury he suffered against the Seattle Seahawks on Oct. 20. McPhee bounced back from that injury and had a solid season, finishing with 34 tackles three sacks and 15 quarterback hits last season.

He also embraced a leadership role with some of the younger players. 

"Pernell, he set the edge," Harbaugh said. "He was a physical force out there. He was a dominating presence; setting the edge and then coming off blocks and making tackles off the edge. I thought Pernell had his best game of the year, along with a lot of other guys." 

McPhee was originally selected by the Ravens in the fifth round (165th overall) of the 2011 NFL Draft. He had a breakout season in 2014 with 7.5 sacks.

That performance led to a lucrative deal in Chicago where his production began to tail off. He had six sacks in 2015, four in both 2016 and 2017 and none in 2018 for the Redskins.

However, McPhee has found new life in Baltimore and has been one of the team's most sturdy defenders. He's ready to make another impact next season.

"I leave things in God's hands, but I have in my mind that I have two or three more productive years left," McPhee said. "It's going to take hard work, but I'm up for it."