- The Washington Times - Thursday, December 5, 2002

OWINGS MILLS, Md. Defensive end Michael McCrary, one of the last links to the Baltimore Ravens Super Bowl XXXV championship team, plans to get additional opinions on his reconstructed knee before he announces his retirement.

McCrary, 32, was placed on the Ravens injured reserve list Monday, ending his season. Coach Brian Billick said then that McCrary's career likely is over. McCrary, who grew up in Falls Church, appeared in five games this season and recorded 14 tackles with two sacks.

"I'm going to seek out a couple more opinions," McCrary said. "I have to do everything I can. I have to see a couple more doctors. Finally, when I get enough [opinions that I cant play], then I'll realize maybe it's time, but I'm not done yet."

After appearing in 10 games (64 tackles and 7.5 sacks) last season, McCrary had season-ending knee surgery Nov.19. During the Ravens' Super Bowl season in 2000, McCrary finished as the team's second-leading tackler with 103.

Baltimore signed McCrary as an unrestricted free agent from the Seattle Seahawks in April 1997. McCrary is second on the Ravens' all-time sack list with 51.

The club would like McCrary to officially announce his retirement before June1 so it would receive more salary cap relief rather than cutting its speed rusher. McCrary, who played in the 1999 and 2000 Pro Bowls, said he will make a decision on his future in the offseason.

"The passion for the game still burns inside of me that's the hard thing to give up," McCrary said.

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