Steve Bisciotti Wants To Extend Three Ravens Contracts


Ravens Owner Steve Bisciotti said he would be surprised if the Ravens sign more than one additional free agent.

Where he's focused for now, however, is on contract extensions for current players.

Bisciotti said he wants contract extensions for cornerback Jimmy Smith, guard Marshal Yanda and kicker Justin Tucker before the season begins. All three are entering the final years of their contracts [add].

"We're still looking at ways to free up [salary-cap space]," Bisciotti said.

"We still have offers … we'd like to extend Marshal Yanda, we'd like to extend Jimmy Smith, Justin Tucker. In all those instances, we have an opportunity to create more cap space than we have now."

Bisciotti confirmed that the Ravens were looking to extend the contract of Haloti Ngata, paying him a smaller annual salary in future seasons, but Ngata rejected that offer. Baltimore was able to work out a new contract with cornerback Lardarius Webb in which he took less money.

The Ravens owner also confirmed that talks on extensions with other players are active.

"We've been fortunate to get Webby to do one," he said. "And we're still working with Marshal Yanda.

The Ravens already worked out a reported five-year, $32 million contract extension with Yanda before the 2011 season. The 30-year-old mauler hasn't shown any signs of slowing down, as he's gone to four straight Pro Bowls since then.

Smith was becoming one of the game's top cornerbacks before he suffered a season-ending foot injury last season. Baltimore has shown its willingness to lock up emerging young corners before (Chris McAlister), and Smith fits into that category.

Tucker is currently the most accurate kicker in NFL history among those with at least 100 attempts. He was a 2013 Pro Bowler and has been clutch. Baltimore knows the value of a good kicker, as they retained Matt Stover from the team's inception in 1996 until 2008 when he retired.

If the Ravens can get any of those extensions ironed out before the season begins, it would help free up money to spend on other needs. Bisciotti outlined cornerback, safety, tight end, wide receiver and pass rusher as the team's top five needs.

"I would be surprised if [we signed] more than one player, but it's going to be a player that we need that's going to fall into probably one of those five categories," he said.

That signing could come after the draft, however.

"That's really our goal is to focus on the draft, and then be able to fill in that last piece that maybe we didn't find value in the draft in the first few rounds," Bisciotti said.

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