Contrary to the Baltimore Sun report that the two sides are making progress toward a long-term contract, ESPN’s Adam Schefter reports that while the Ravens and Rice are talking, they have not made any progress toward a new deal.
If Rice doesn’t agree to a long-term deal by July 16, he will surely sign the franchise tender and play the 2012 season on the one-year tender, which is a guaranteed base salary of $7.7 million. But Rice could decide to skip training camp and not sign that tender until the start of the regular season if he grows frustrated by the lack of progress.
All indications are that Rice wants a big-time contract. In February Peter King reported that Rice wants an Adrian Peterson-like contract, which would mean a seven-year, $100 million contract with $36 million guaranteed and $40 million in the first three years. More recently reports have said Rice is seeking $10 million a year, which is more than LeSean McCoy just got from the Eagles.
If that’s what Rice is asking for, it’s no surprise that the sides have made no progress. Realistically, the Ravens just aren’t going to pay Rice the kind of money he’s reportedly seeking. It’s a bad time to be a free agent running back in the NFL, and Rice is finding that out.