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Ravens Already Started On Other Contracts


General Manager Ozzie Newsome wastes no time.

Before the ink was even dry on Terrell Suggs' new four-year contract extension, Newsome had already begun discussions with players' agents about keeping some of the Ravens' pending free agents.

Newsome did not specify which players he is negotiating with, but the list of Ravens free agents includes tight end Dennis Pitta, offensive tackles Eugene Monroe and Michael Oher, linebacker Daryl Smith, cornerback Corey Graham, defensive lineman Arthur Jones and wide receiver Jacoby Jones.

"We've engaged in discussions with several of our players," Newsome said. "With the combine coming up, the majority of the agents will be there and we will be there. I'm sure we'll have more talks, but we've engaged in several conversations with several players."

Monday was also the first day NFL teams can apply the franchise tag to one unrestricted free agent, so that could also be an option for the Ravens. Pitta and Monroe are the only two likely candidates.

In addition to re-signing free agents, Newsome said the Ravens have started extension talks with veterans that would allow the Ravens to free up salary cap space. Pro Bowl defensive tackle Haloti Ngata could be a candidate for an extension as he has two years left on his contract and carries a reported $16 million salary cap hit in 2014.

Newsome and the Ravens have long been in favor of extending players rather than restructuring deals that could lead to dead money down the road.

"We still have the same mindset that we're not going to do a whole lot of renegotiations, but doing some extensions with some of our players would allow us to be able to create some cap space," Newsome said. "What it does is just allows us to have the opportunity to pursue some of our own guys, but also be prepared for when free agency opens up on March 11."

Re-signing current free agents is not the only priority for Newsome.

The Ravens are also interested in adding a wide receiver, free safety and interior offensive linemen this offseason, and the new flexibility under the salary cap could give Newsome buying power to make those acquisitions on the open market.

"If there are some players that are attractive to us, then we can pursue them," Newsome said. 

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