Anderson turns down Bucs, Chargers for three-year deal with Ravens

Updated: September 4, 2008, 7:35 PM ET
By John Clayton | ESPN.com

With job security in mind, former Cincinnati Bengals right tackle Willie Anderson turned down trips to Tampa Bay and San Diego and accepted a three-year, $10.5 million deal with the Baltimore Ravens.

Willie Anderson

Anderson

Anderson was set to make a Thursday visit to Tampa, but the Ravens stepped up their offer. The former Pro Bowl tackle can now take a few weeks to learn the offense and try to win the starting job.

Normally veteran players who are released in the final cut have a hard time securing a one-year deal. A three-year, $3.5 million a year offer is rare.

The Ravens have Jared Gaither at left tackle and Adam Terry at right tackle, but the addition of Anderson will give them flexibility. Terry can slide over to left tackle to help or beat out Gaither for the starting job. Both Gaither and Terry missed most of the preseason because of ankle injuries.

The Chargers were particularly disappointed about losing Anderson to the Ravens. They had targeted him as a key backup for the right side of their line. The Bucs were looking for tackle help but may not have been willing to give him a starting job. The chance to start and the three-year deal convinced Anderson to turn down the other trips and agree with the Ravens.

Senior writer John Clayton covers the NFL for ESPN.com.

John Clayton

NFL senior writer