(Reuters) - The Baltimore Ravens have traded five-time Pro Bowl defensive tackle Haloti Ngata to the Detroit Lions, the National Football League club announced on Tuesday, the first day of the free agency period.
Terms had not yet been released, though various reports said the Ravens would receive fourth and fifth round draft picks in return.
The Ravens had been trying to work out a contract extension with Ngata, but were unsuccessful and decided to ship him to another team minutes before free agency opened.
Detroit had a big hole to fill at defensive tackle after failing to re-sign four-time Pro Bowler Ndamukong Suh.
Ngata, an anchor of the Ravens defensive line for nine seasons after being drafted 12th overall in 2006, was suspended for the final four games of the regular season for using the performance enhancing drug Adderall.
Reporting by Larry Fine in New York; Editing by Steve Keating.