The Baltimore Ravens have declined to pick up their 2021 option on former Steelers inside linebacker L.J. Fort, sending him to free agency, according to an NFL transactions release.
Ravens ILB L.J. Fort was cut by the Ravens, per an NFL transaction release.— Jamison Hensley (@jamisonhensley) March 17, 2021
Baltimore will create $2.25M of cap space with the move.
Ravens won't get a comp pick if Fort is signed elsewhere because he was released before his contract expired.
While Baltimore has plenty of young linebackers that need playing time, the move is still a bit puzzling. Fort had been a productive player over the last few seasons and his exit only creates $2.25 million in cap space.
Fort totaled 53 total tackles, six tackles-for-loss, two sacks, two fumbles recoveries and a defensive touchdown over the last two seasons in Baltimore.
After cutting inside linebacker Vince Williams on Tuesday, the Pittsburgh Steelers now find themselves in need of support at the position, setting up a potential reunion with Fort if there is mutual interest.
Fort has played for six different teams over his career, but his longest tenure was a four-year stint with Pittsburgh from 2015 to 2018. Fort, 31, posted 63 total tackles, five tackles-for-loss, two tackles and a scoop-and-score while with the Steelers.
Fort initially signed with the Cleveland Browns as an undrafted free agent out of Northern Iowa in 2012. Reports of Fort’s exit emerged early afternoon Wednesday, and seemed to have caught him off guard, as he shared a surprised reaction on Twitter.