Ravens to discuss Flacco’s contract over weekend

2/19/13 in NFL   |   BrianMaddock   |   1429 respect

The Baltimore Ravens will meet up with Joe Flacco’s agent this weekend to begin the first phase of contract negotiations for the quarterback this year.
Joe Flacco’s agent Joe Linta is expected to be in Indianapolis at the NFL's scouting combine this weekend. And while the Baltimore Ravens will be there along with the other 31 NFL teams to evaluate the draft prospects, their business there goes beyond just mapping young talent as the team tries to lock their Super Bowl MVP to a long-term deal ahead of the March deadline.
It will be the first time since last August that the two sides have gotten together to discuss Joe Flacco’s possible future in Baltimore. Joe Flacco and the Baltimore Ravens could not agree on an extension last summer. So, Joe Flacco went on to play out the final year of his rookie contract, letting the Baltimore Ravens determine his value to the franchise following the fourth-year pro’s performance last season.
The 28-year-old Joe Flacco stuck it big an AFC North title en route to the playoffs, as the Baltimore Ravens claimed victories over Indianapolis, Denver and New England, before finally defeating the San Francisco 49ers 34-31 in a Super Bowl matchup. Joe Flacco had a spectacular postseason, finishing with 11 touchdowns and no interceptions.
The Super Bowl MVP Joe Flacco made less than $7 million in the 2012 season. Even if both sides fail to strike a long-term contract extension and the Baltimore Ravens slap the franchise tag on him, Joe Flacco will still be making double his current earnings next season.
The non-exclusive franchise tag at the position is estimated at $14.6 million for one season. Other teams could still make an offer to Joe Flacco while he’s still tagged while the Baltimore Ravens will retain the right to match that offer or let him go and gain two first-round picks in return.
But if the Baltimore Ravens were to use the exclusive franchise tag estimated at $20.46 million, other teams can’t make an offer. However, Joe Flacco would only get a one-year contract out of it.
New Orleans Saints quarterback Drew Brees and Denver Broncos’ Peyton Manning are the league’s top earners at the position making an average of $ 20 million and $18 million a year respectively. The way Jo Flacco’s agent sees it – Flacoo is in his “prime” and can still match Drew Brees and Peyton Mannings’ Championship titles.
''The onus is on them to make a move after this week,” Joe Linta noted during Super Bowl week. “I would guess they want to keep him. He's 28, in the prime of his football life, has never missed a game. His resume on the table is outstanding and his future is even brighter.''
If the Baltimore Ravens move on towards a contract extension early, they could still make some big splashes in free agency, as the franchise could avoid the cumbersome load of the franchise tag on its’ cap space.
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