Joe Linta: Ravens were dumb to delay Flacco’s deal
However, the Ravens and especially Flacco are taking great heat from critics for the way negotiations were handled by both sides and the cap-hit the franchise quarterback’s recent contract extension poses for the team (though it only accounts to $6.8 million for the 2013 season). It resulted in the exodus of at least eight high-priced veterans and key-contributors from the Super Bowl winning team – such as Dannell Ellerbe, Ed Reed and Anquan Boldin – as the Ravens tried to juggle negotiations with their own players and took several cost-cutting moves.
However, Flacco’s agent Joe Linta claimed that the Ravens were responsible for the current situation, which wouldn’t have ensued if they were slightly more flexible in negotiations last year. Linta said the hangup in negotiations last summer stemmed from a difference over a $1 million in non-guaranteed base salary in what would have been a six-year contract extension. Linta estimated that it would have wound up costing the team around $35 million over the entire period of the contract.
“I’ve never in my life seen a dumber move. I guess people can say, ‘Well, Joe was dumb, too,’” Linta said while calling out the Ravens for their poor-decision making over the Flacco contract. “It could have been (dumb), God forbid, if he got hurt. But $1 million to Steve Bisciotti six years from now? That’s like 100 bucks for you or me today.”
But since Flacco’s cap number is surge to increase to $28.55 million by 2016, the Ravens will be essentially back on the negotiations table within three-years to restructure the current contract.
"I'm not apologetic for the fact this is really a three-year deal, there's no way they can afford $29 million a couple of years from now,'' Linta further defended client and the way negotiations played out. "I'm not apologetic. They chose to walk away.''