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Derrick Henry clarifies 'Baltimore was always my No. 1 option'

Derrick Henry created a stir recently by noting that the Dallas Cowboys never reached out to him during the free agency process. Henry wants to make it clear that even if Dallas had called, he would have chosen Baltimore.

Henry, who resides in Dallas, said on The Jim Rome Show that the Ravens were always his top destination, while the Cowboys were more of a curiosity.

"For the record, Baltimore was always my No. 1 option," he said. "That's always where I wanted to go. And like I said, I know the trade talks, it was almost going to happen, but I didn't know once free agency started if they still felt the same until I talked to my agent to see what was really going on. And I know, like you said, the Cowboys lost (Tony) Pollard, so I didn't know if they're going to be looking for a running back. I live here in the offseason, I've been training here, living here for a while, so I just thought it made sense, and you know, I thought there'd be talks. But they never really reached out. And you know, like I said, everything happens for a reason, I just pray to God to put me in the place where I'm meant to be, and Baltimore is that spot. And I'm happy and I'm excited for the opportunity. But the Cowboys never reached out, and it's all good. At the end of the day, no hard feelings."

The 30-year-old running back inked a two-year, $16 million contract in Baltimore worth up to $20 million in incentives. After trade rumors between the Titans and Ravens puttered out last year, Henry told Rome that Baltimore was his No. 1 choice this offseason because of John Harbaugh's culture and the fit next to Lamar Jackson in the backfield.

"I just felt like it fit, their culture, what they're all about," he said. "I feel like it fits my style of play, and I don't know, I just felt like it was going to be destined at some point. Like I said, we came close during last season, and as I started thinking about it as the season went on and then going to the offseason, I just felt like it just made sense. You know you feel like you've got a feeling about something, it just feels like it's meant to be? That's what I felt about Baltimore."

With Jackson and Henry in the backfield together, the Ravens could be a nightmare for defenses to try to stop on the ground. Throw in the quarterback's improved pocket presence in the passing game last season, and the Ravens' offense is one of the more intriguing units heading toward the 2024 campaign. How the Ravens utilize Henry, who played his first eight seasons in Tennessee, will be one of the top points to track when training camps open in July.

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