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Keenan Reynolds gets support to play for Ravens in 2016

This story has been clarified. Read below

Keenan Reynolds is one step closer to playing for the Baltimore Ravens this season.

Secretary of the Navy Ray Mabus has submitted a request and "strongly recommended" that Reynolds be cleared to join the NFL after a standout college career.

"Approval of these requests will provide the Department of Defense (DoD) and Department of the Navy (DON) significant favorable exposure, enhance national recruiting, and serve as a positive ongoing contribution to DoD public affairs efforts," Mabus said in a memo accompanying the request.

Secretary of Defense Ash Carter would grant final approval. An announcement is expected Friday afternoon.

Reynolds, a sixth-round pick of the Ravens, would fulfill his service commitment in the Navy Reserve, allowing him to play full time for the Ravens.

New England Patriots long-snapper Joe Cardona also has received permission from Mabus to play this season, pending Carter's approval. Cardona, who was drafted in 2015, spent off days last season at the Naval Preparatory Academy in Newport, Rhode Island.

Mabus originally told "The Dan Patrick Show" on Friday morning that Reynolds and Cardona were cleared for the 2016 season before a clarification was issued Friday afternoon.

The Navy gets a five-year service commitment from Reynolds in exchange for his undergraduate education, but in some cases, that commitment can be waived or rearranged.

Reynolds, a triple-option quarterback at Navy, is looking to switch to wide receiver and returner for Baltimore. He finished his college career as the FBS' all-time leader in total touchdowns (88), rushing yards by a quarterback (4,559) and points scored (530).

A May 13 story on ESPN.com did not completely detail the approval process for Baltimore Ravens draft pick Keenan Reynolds to play in the NFL. Final approval must come from the Secretary of Defense.