Why Joe Flacco Is In Line For Another Raise
Yes, you read that headline correctly.
After receiving a then record-breaking $120 million contract two years ago, Flacco could be in line for a *raise *this summer.
The reason is three-fold: 1) the Ravens need to renegotiate his contract in order to reduce his whopping $28.55 million cap hit* *in 2016, the second highest in NFL, 2) the quarterback pay on the market continues to increase and 3) Flacco continues to win.
Both Flacco and the Ravens have already acknowledged they will hit the negotiating table again this summer. And since they'll already be sitting across from each other, former sports agent and current CBS Sports writer Joel Corry says Flacco will ultimately get more money.
Since Flacco agreed to a deal in 2013, a host of other NFL quarterbacks have reached new agreements with each one seemingly getting more expensive for the teams. For example, Russell Wilson, Ben Roethlisberger, Cam Newton and, most recently, Philip Rivers all got new deals or extensions this offseason. They all have higher annual averages than Flacco (although not by much) and they all have more guaranteed money.
What a raise would look like isn't exactly clear. Maybe it's extending Flacco beyond his original six-year deal that's scheduled to end after 2018 and lock him up as a Raven into 2019, 2020 or even 2021. By getting a longer contract, he could get a raise with overall and guaranteed money, while simultaneously helping the Ravens get more manageable yearly cap numbers.
"We can make it a win-win for Joe," Owner Steve Bisciotti said in April. "I think he'll be very amenable to a new deal and it would be our job since we already have $28 [million] fitting under [the cap], to flatten out those hits on our cap so that they're more consistent and don't jump from $14 [million] to $28 [million ], but they jump like 19-20-21-22-23, something like that. … I'm not real worried about it because I know he wants to stay."
Bisciotti is right. Flacco does want to stay.
In a Q&A with ESPN's Jamison Hensley yesterday, Flacco was asked what the chances are of him remaining with the Ravens in 2016 given this summer's expected negotiations.
Joe, do you feel you'll play your entire career in Baltimore?
"I sure hope so," Flacco said. "I feel that way at this point. I think we have a really good team, and that sets up for good quarterback play. I believe in my abilities and our team's abilities. I think that's what it's about. It's about winning football games.
"I still have a ton of excitement to play, and that means playing here. I love the fans here and I love the city. I couldn't see myself anywhere else."
Perriman Getting MRI To Discover Issue
Head Coach John Harbaugh doesn't have an explanation for why rookie receiver Breshad Perriman isn't back from a knee injury that he and doctors originally thought would only hold the first-round pick from a couple days of practice.
Cut to Monday, where Perriman missed his 12th straight practice open to the media.
To figure out what's going on, Bleacher Report's Jason Cole said Monday the Ravens will conduct an MRI on Perriman's knee.
"For Perriman, the news is troublesome," Cole said. "He's being set for an MRI to see what is wrong with his knee that has kept him out almost two weeks of practice time. If Perriman cannot go, the backups to him and the likely starting receiver on the opposite side of Steve Smith would be either Kamar Aiken or Marlon Brown, neither of which have been consistent players and are considered role players."
Harbaugh "hates" that his receiver has missed so much time, but said he isn't a doctor and can't give more explanation other than what he's already said, calling it a bruise/strain.
The doctor on staff at Baltimore Beatdown acknowledged he's taking a shot in the dark with guessing what could be wrong, saying: "At this point I can only speculate due to the fact that the Ravens have been fairly non-specific about his condition. … Nevertheless, given his mechanism of injury my best bet is that Perriman suffered either a bone bruise or a mild sprain to his posterior cruciate ligament (PCL)."
Perhaps the MRI will shed more light. And if Cole's report is accurate that an MRI was conducted yesterday, perhaps Harbaugh will share an update with reporters this afternoon.
Update from Cole: "Source said MRI results for #Ravens WR Breshad Perriman were 'normal.' Just healing slow. Should be back in a week or so."
Harbaugh also said after practice that the MRI "was normal. [There is] still a little bit of swelling and still a little bit of sprain."
Steve Smith Sr.'s Last Lecture
After announcing he'll retire after this season, veteran receiver Steve Smith Sr. sat down to write about his feelings as he embarks on his 15th and final year in the NFL.
Writing for the TheMMQB, Smith talked about a book he is now reading for the second time and has placed in his locker as a daily reminder of how important seizing moments in life are. The Last Lecture is a best-seller by Randy Pausch, a professor who was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer and told he had only months to live.
The book encourages its readers not to wait for a significant life moment to treasure what's really important. That's why Smith has decided to move on from football, even though he believes he could still play at a very high level for a couple more years. He wants to take control of his life, and be with his family.
"I've thought a lot about my legacy, and what my last lecture should be. I want to be remembered as a hard-nosed football player," Smith wrote. "When you retire from football, you don't die, you don't stop breathing, you don't stop being a person. You have a whole life ahead. These are glorious years, but you can have many more. … Walking away, I will teach [my children] that life goes on. I am also going to teach them that you can take control over your life. You make decisions every day that shape your future."
He goes on: "I'm going to miss the people in football, I'm going to miss the game, but I'm not going to miss the pressure. I remember 2005 was one of the best years I had, but also one of the toughest mentally. One moment in particular stood out. We were in the huddle, late in the season, and a call was designed for me. Jordan Gross said, 'Hey Steve, we need a play from you.' Travelle Wharton looked me in the eyes and said, 'Hey Steve, let's go.' That moment resonated. I sensed their urgency and their expectations. I felt the weight of not wanting to let them down. I don't remember how that play turned out, but I remember that moment. Grinding through that pressure for 15 years, 16 games a season, for multiple plays a game is mentally and emotionally exhausting. Finally, now that I know I am done, I feel like I can play freely. I am liberated."
Read his full blog here.
- Joe, do you ever think about how many Super Bowl rings you will win? "You definitely think about it here and there," Flacco told Hensley. "Your goal at the beginning of every season is to win a Super Bowl, and we talk about it in our team meetings. Obviously, that makes you think about it. I always thought about winning that first one and when it would be. Now, that's done, it's not important anymore. We need to win another one. We're a totally new team and we've got guys who are hungry to win. When you win one, you're even hungrier to win that next one. I think about it, and it's all positive. I think we've been in a situation to make those thoughts realistic. We've got a good enough team to do that, and that's what is exciting." [ESPN]
- "Less than a year ago, Bryn Renner was cleaning golf carts in North Carolina. Then last Thursday, the third-string quarterback was the hero who orchestrated the Ravens' game-winning drive in their first preseason game against the New Orleans Saints," wrote Ryan Baillargeon. Renner said his time away from football was "miserable" due to a shoulder injury and being cut from the Denver Broncos as an undrafted rookie. But he never gave up hope. [The Baltimore Sun]