Ravens to sign Boulware if he passes physical

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WESTMINSTER -- The Baltimore Ravens are on the verge of reuniting with four-time Pro Bowl outside linebacker Peter Bouware pending the outcome of a physical Thursday.

The Ravens' all-time leading pass rusher impressed team officials in a workout Wednesday, reporting in excellent shape. If all goes well with the physical, Boulware could officially rejoin the team on the field as soon as Thursday or Friday.

"We are still evaluating where we are with that and whether we can make that happen or not," Ravens coach Brian Billick said of the prospect of re-signing the team's 1997 first-round draft pick who has 67 ½ career sacks. "His countenance and everything about him looked good and fresh. We will see how we move forward with it."

Now, the Ravens will want assurances from their medical staff about Boulware's durability considering he missed all of last season with knee and toe injuries.

If Boulware is healthy, he's likely to act as the team's situational pass rusher and backup Adalius Thomas at strongside linebacker. The necessity of bringing back Boulware increased markedly when rookie linebacker Dan Cody injured his right knee and might be out for the entire season.

Boulware, 30, is likely to sign a contract similar to the restructured deal he rejected this spring, one that included $2 million in base salary and $2 million in incentives.

Boulware was released this spring as a salary-cap casualty as the Ravens jettisoned his $6 million base salary, the highest on the roster.

Boulware initially injured his knee in December of 2003 against the Cleveland Browns and hasn't played in game since, so rust could be a factor.

"I hope we sign Pete," defensive end Terrell Suggs said. "We can always use another good pass rusher."

In addition to being a long time contributor to RavensInsider, Aaron Wilson writes for the Carroll County Times in Westminster Maryland.

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