HOUSTON (AP) — All-Pro fullback Vonta Leach signed a three-year, $11 million deal with the Baltimore Ravens on Sunday.

The Houston Texans were hoping to re-sign the 6-foot, 255-pound Leach, who was the lead blocker for Arian Foster, the NFL’s leading rusher in 2010.

But the Ravens needed an escort for running back Ray Rice, especially since Baltimore expects to lose unrestricted free agent Le’Ron McClain.

“We looked at him since early this offseason, and he was definitely on our wish list,” Ravens coach John Harbaugh said. “Vonta fits the style of offense we are building, and his type of physical play is an addition that fits. We’re looking forward to getting him in here and start mixing him in right away. This is another addition where the coaches can send a big thank you to the personnel department.”

General manager Ozzie Newsome, who negotiated the deal, said of Leach: “He’s a Raven-type player. He’s very physical and dedicated to the game. Our running game just got better.”

The Houston Chronicle and KRIV-TV first reported the deal, which was confirmed by agent Ralph Vitolo on Sunday. The Ravens announced the signing late Sunday afternoon.

Houston contacted Leach immediately when free agency began, but Leach wanted to test the market after making his first Pro Bowl in 2010. Leach played the last five seasons with the Texans after signing with Green Bay as an undrafted free agent in 2004.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

Comments (4)
  1. Josh says:

    No offense to Leach I’m sure its good, but how do we have the $$ for him but we can;t keep Heap? Even if Heap took a cut.

    Plus I just bought my Heap jersey its not even 8 months old.

    1. Azeem Bhatti says:

      Cuz we have two promising TEs who are willing to give it their all. And we have McCLain who has convinced himself that he is a running back and therefore does not want to be a Fullback. Rice would have no backup, if he went down to injury. It made sense to get Leach.

  2. Raven X says:

    Leach is a very good addition, but for $11 million??????

  3. Steve says:

    Heap has been great for the past 10 years, and grew to be an icon of Baltimore sports, similar to Eddie Murray. The problem with him has been in the past few years he’s spent more time on I/R then actually on the field. It is time to bring in the young talent for the young quarterback to throw to. McClain was due to be traded. He’s been more of a hindrance to the running game for the past two seasons and Rice needs someone more effective to bust a hole in the defensive lines. The key to our offense has always been our running game.

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