On Wednesday afternoon the Ravens reached an agreement that will send Jeremy Zuttah and a sixth round pick to San Francisco in exchange for the 49ers sixth round pick. Essentially, the Ravens will move up 12 spots in the sixth round of the 2017 draft in exchange for Zuttah.
The news comes hours after reports that Zuttah would be released by the Ravens. Reporters said that the team decided to release the pro bowl center after failing to find an appropriate trade offer. It looks like that was either false information or the 49ers reached out at the last minute to make their proposal.
Either way, the departure of Zuttah puts the Ravens in need of another offensive lineman after Rick Wagner signed with the Lions last week. The teams best current in-house option is John Urschel who has only started a handful of games at the center position.
If the Ravens are going to find a more appropriate replacement it will be difficult. The free agent market for centers is very thin. The best free agent option would be longtime Jets center, Nick Mangold. However, the Ravens have said they are not currently pursuing him.
The news of Zuttah’s release was puzzling but a trade makes more sense. At least the Ravens will get something in return considering his release would have saved close to nothing in cap space.