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Posted at 08:12 AM ET, 07/26/2011

Baltimore Ravens plan surprising cuts: Todd Heap, Derrick Mason, Kelly Gregg and Willis McGahee

Todd Heap (left) may not be finished in Baltimore, but the team said it would release him. (Winslow Townson / AP)
The Baltimore Ravens were out of the gate fast after the end of the NFL lockout Monday, announcing roster moves that were shocking, if not necessarily permanent.

The Ravens said they would cut tight end Todd Heap and wide receiver Derrick Mason — their top receivers of all time — as well as running back Willis McGahee and offensive defensive lineman Kelly Gregg when teams can release players on Thursday. There is a possibility, however, that some of those big names could re-sign with the team at a reduced salary now that the salary cap is back in place. The Ravens save $18.6 million in cap space with the cuts, according to the Baltimore Sun.

“With this agreement comes a new salary cap, unlike last season when there was no cap,” General Manager Ozzie Newsome said. “We will be making a number of roster moves in the next 48 hours that will free up salary cap space. This will give us the ability to make offers to our players we want to re-sign, plus put us in a position to sign free agents from other teams.”

Mason, Heap and Gregg are considered likely targets for re-signing.

“This is just another chip on my shoulder,” Mason said in a WBAL interview. “This is something else that fuels me and makes me try to be as productive on the field as I can, whether that be in Baltimore — and I hope it is — or somewhere else. [My return] is solely up to them.”

By  |  08:12 AM ET, 07/26/2011

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