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Ravens release S Earl Thomas for conduct detrimental

Pro Bowl safety Earl Thomas has officially been released by the Baltimore Ravens, the team announced Sunday.

Following a fight with teammate Chuck Clark at practice on Friday, Thomas was sent home and he's now been cut by the Ravens for conduct detrimental to the team.

"We have terminated S Earl Thomas' contract for personal conduct that has adversely affected the Baltimore Ravens," the statement read.

NFL Network Insider Ian Rapoport reported that the Ravens will also attempt to recoup the $10 million that Thomas was due to make this season. Ahead of the 2019 season, Thomas signed a four-year, $55 million deal. With the wording of the release, Rapoport reported it's indicates the team would seek Thomas' salary for this season due to conduct detrimental.

Following the team's statement, Thomas made his own on Instagram.

"Appreciate the Ravens organization for the opportunity," Thomas began. "Had a great run. Wish things would have ended different but you live and you learn. Thank you Eric DeCosta and everyone else who played a role in bringing me to B-More. Wish you guys the best."

Ravens coach John Harbaugh spoke to the media following Sunday's practice. It was his first time speaking since Thomas was sent home. He simply referred to the statement and moved on.

"Well, I think the statement speaks for itself, you know, there's really not much more to add to that," Harbaugh said. "Just planning to leave it at that at this point."

Of particular note is that Ravens player leadership was behind Thomas' release, as NFL Network's Mike Garafolo reported team leaders communicated to management on Saturday that they supported a release or trade.

Looking further into the numbers, Thomas will count for $5 million this season and $10 million in 2021 in dead money on the Baltimore salary cap, assuming the team can support voiding his guaranteed $10 million salary, NFL Network's Tom Pelissero reported. If -- or most likely when -- a grievance is filed, the Ravens would carry an additional $4 million in dead cap until the grievance is resolved, Pelissero added.

Thomas' contract also contained offset language, per Pelissero, which would reduce the amount Baltimore would owe him and cut number challenged in a grievance once Thomas signs with a new club.

Thomas' altercation with Clark was Friday with news coming out about his dismissal from the team on Saturday and his release has come about 24 hours later. What's next for Thomas could come as early as today with teams available to sign him as he is not subject to waivers.

Would-be suitors for the seven-time Pro Bowl selection look to be the Cowboys, 49ers and Texans, Rapoport reported.

With Thomas' departure comes a starting vacancy at free safety. DeShon Elliott is likely next up with Clark starting at strong safety. Jordan Richards and Anthony Levine could also slide in.

Thomas' exit from Baltimore became expected two days after he got into a fight at practice with Clark. In the aftermath, the Ravens sent Thomas home and told him not to return for practice on Saturday or Sunday.

This is Thomas' second infamous departure from a team as his days with the Seahawks -- which covered eight seasons, three All-Pro selections and a Super Bowl win -- concluded with him flipping off the Seattle sideline while he was being carted off after sustaining a broken leg. It's also not the first time he's reportedly had an incident with a teammate, as Garafolo referenced an altercation with defensive lineman Brandon Williams last year.

Thomas' days in Baltimore have concluded and after his latest transgression, he's a Raven nevermore and the reigning AFC North titlists are moving on. Where Thomas will find himself next will be the next chapter.

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