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A proposed Joe Flacco contract

Flacco Getty Images

If the Ravens want to make Joe Flacco the highest paid quarterback in the NFL, and if Flacco is satisfied to barely clear the bar set last year by Saints quarterback Drew Brees, there’s a quick and easy way to get this contract done.

Using Brees’ 2012 contract as the starting point, Flacco would get a $40 million signing bonus, a fully-guaranteed base salary of $5 million in 2013, and base salaries of $10 million in 2014, $13 million in 2015, $15 million in 2016, and $18 million in 2017.

Under the rules of signing-bonus proration, $8 million would be applied to each year’s salary cap.  That would result in a cap number of $13 million in 2013, $18 million in 2014, $21 million in 2015, $23 million in 2016, and $26 million in 2017.

It equates to a five-year payout of $101 million — $1 million better than Brees and, for now, making Flacco the highest-paid quarterback in the NFL.

The two sides would have to decide whether and to what extent the money due beyond 2013 would be guaranteed, for injury only or fully.  Last year, Brees received $40 million in the first year, with $20 million guaranteed for injury only in future years.  (The injury guarantees eventually convert to full guarantees.)

The cap number in the final year would be a potential problem for the Ravens, since Flacco presumably would have one more long-term contract left before retirement.  Specifically, the $26 million cap number in 2017 would translate to a franchise tag of $31.2 million in 2018.  Thus, it would make more sense for the Ravens to tack on a sixth year at a base salary of, say, $21 million.

This would keep the average north of $20 million per year and it would give the Ravens a more manageable franchise number of $25.2 million for 2019.

Is it really that simple?  Yes, it is.  Which means that it likely won’t happen this way.

Even though it could be worked out in a matter of hours.  Or, if both sides are truly motivated, a matter of minutes.

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54 Responses to “A proposed Joe Flacco contract”
  1. ravenmuscle says: Feb 24, 2013 5:41 PM

    Sounds like a done deal to me….we’ll take it.

    GO RAVENS

  2. nfl4days says: Feb 24, 2013 5:41 PM

    I dont understand how athletes can say the team comes first, while asking for a monster contract knowing full well its gonna make the team worse next year.

  3. blackngold4life says: Feb 24, 2013 5:49 PM

    Now he deserves Drew Brees $ ? Brees has been an Elite QB since he came into the league. This is really gettin REDICULOUS. Somewhere Trent Dilfer is asking his self what happend to his big payday! He won a ring too.

  4. lambeaufieldwest says: Feb 24, 2013 5:50 PM

    Why not just let Flacco go and get Alex Smith instead? Same QB and Smith would be less $$, hence, better for the team.

  5. j0esixpack says: Feb 24, 2013 5:52 PM

    I’m fine with the Ravens paying Flacco as if he’s the best QB in the NFL.

    Since he’s not the best QB in the NFL that will make nearly impossible for them to sign all the other players they need to be the best TEAM in the NFL

    Sounds good to me. Get it done!

  6. thefiesty1 says: Feb 24, 2013 5:53 PM

    Poor guy, he’s starving to death. At 1 million a year they are all overpaid. One of these days we’ll be talking about real money.

  7. atwatercrushesokoye says: Feb 24, 2013 5:54 PM

    The Ravens will regret giving out that contract. Flacco is an above average quarterback who had a tremendous 4 game run (which was 1 misplayed ball away from being a 2 game run) NOT an elite quarterback who finally figured it out.

    He’s a piece to the puzzle, not the piece you build around.

  8. thejuddstir says: Feb 24, 2013 5:57 PM

    Flacco is a very good QB but not in the company of Brady, Brees, Rodgers and possibly P. Manning. I know his “playoff record” but the dude is just too inconsistent on a weekly basis. Point being, he’s not worth that kind of money and especially how it will affect the cap numbers for future years.

  9. ravenator says: Feb 24, 2013 5:59 PM

    World champs will remain in tact. Bank on it haters.

  10. tannethrill says: Feb 24, 2013 6:04 PM

    Last I checked Brees was breaking long standing records and basically carrying his team.

    Not taking anything away from Flacco but He’s not a top 5 QB in the league. He could be a year or two from now but I’d put him in that 6-8 range right now.

    The Ravens team plays well and right together and the money he’s demanding suggests he’s more than what he truly is.

    Flacco can either take advantage of the situation and hold the Ravens hostage, possibly hurting his team by causing them to make rash moves in order to either hold onto youth or prolong veteran depth or he can be reasonable.

  11. 4ever85 (aka Butch DeadLift) says: Feb 24, 2013 6:09 PM

    The Ravens are a good organization. I seriously hope they don’t give in to Flacco’s ludicrous demands and get some draft picks while freeing up about $20m per year to send a message to all good-not-elite QBs.

    When Flacco ends up on the Browns, that’ll make Cutler sign whatever contract the Bears put in front of him.

  12. dawglb says: Feb 24, 2013 6:14 PM

    Can’t wait to see how Joe (and the Ravens) are performing 5 years from now. This could be interesting.

  13. mblue24 says: Feb 24, 2013 6:16 PM

    Flacco is not worth this kind of money. He hasn’t proven that he can do this year on and year out. Let him go!!!

  14. cavdasm says: Feb 24, 2013 6:17 PM

    Top 10 QB at best , only because of solid line is the reason for success. Ravens PLEASE pay him !!!!

  15. benroethlisberger7 says: Feb 24, 2013 6:19 PM

    I farted and an egg came out. The egg hatched and I named him Joe Flacco. He came a long way. Makes me proud.

  16. 6thsense79 says: Feb 24, 2013 6:20 PM

    I don’t understand why athletes are the only folks in this country we expect to not chase the money or take less for the good of the team. The same sentiment for any other occupation I would be hearing complaints of socialism.

    1. It’s not the job of the athlete to manage the salary cap. GMs get paid fairly well to do so.

    2. Everybody talks about team this and team that but as soon as the team feels like they don’t need you anymore they’ll cut the player or force them to take a pay cut. And you know what just about everyone here will say? Oh well that’s business. You see it’s all about team to fans when they need the player but rurns to a business when they don’t.

    3. I’ve seen so many fans on here saying a player shouldn’t sign a contract if he wasn’t happy with the terms instead of holding out in the middle of one. Well Flacco is not signing a deal he’s not happy with.

    4. In football…a sport were anyone can get cut at just about any point in the contract I don’t necessarily want to hear folks complaining about someone trying to get what they think they can. It’s so easy to tell someone else to take less when it’s not your money or body on the line.

  17. jharmon64 says: Feb 24, 2013 6:24 PM

    I don’t see how everyone is stating that when comparing Brees to Flacco, that Brees is Montana and Flacco is Scott Mitchell.

    That’s what is being implied.

    Sure Brees has set a bunch of records, but he’s not taken his team to the promised land more than Flacco and he’s had more years and better weapons to do it.

    Flacco deserves to get paid handsomely. Just take a breath and know that in a couple years he’ll be going from top 5 QB paid to top 10 or 12 with inflation.

  18. boogerhut says: Feb 24, 2013 6:25 PM

    I’m just sick of the “I need more money than the last guy got” mentality. It’s like a pissing contest with these egomaniacs and their bloodsucking agents. I hope they give the upper middle pack QB superstar money and trash the rest of the roster.

  19. chawk12thman says: Feb 24, 2013 6:31 PM

    Faster would be to offer him 60 Mill a year……Neither of these options would be my direction. I would try to keep him but not at the highest pay. About 5th would be where I would put him…..

  20. bobzilla1001 says: Feb 24, 2013 6:34 PM

    Fans have only themselves and the media to blame for this quarterback obsession. Sometime over the past 30 years, fans and the media bought into ESPN’s crazy notion that quarterbacks are more important than teams.
    Over the past eight years we’ve watched some pretty ordinary quarterbacks (Roethlisberger, Eli Manning and now Flacco) win rings.
    Even Peyton Manning didn’t exactly set the world on fire in the postseason the year the Colts won their Super Bowl.
    Also, Tom Brady hasn’t won a Super Bowl since he got good and his defense went south of below average.
    Football is the Ultimate Team Sport.

  21. thestrategyexpert says: Feb 24, 2013 6:57 PM

    To trade Flacco is the route you want to go if you truly want to maximize his value to the franchise, not overpaying him. I also advise drug addicts not to do drugs to no avail. Some of them consider it medicine. One man’s trash is another man’s treasure. Trading Flacco is the path that leads to the most efficient and bountiful treasure. He’s priced out of being a value player and other teams will overpay for the right to overpay him.

  22. vikinganswer says: Feb 24, 2013 6:58 PM

    Good news for Flacco, but bad decision for Ravens. bToo inconsistent to be paid top 10 let alone #1.

  23. neepo13 says: Feb 24, 2013 6:59 PM

    An agent is involved, he is going to try to take over the Ravens entire salary cap if he can. Wouldn’t shock me if he was looking for 30 million per year. I hate agents and lawyers.

  24. EJ says: Feb 24, 2013 7:02 PM

    It is amazing how much money these players can make over 10-12 years. Between their Salary, Bonuses and Endorsement’s, they have it made.

  25. paul82461 says: Feb 24, 2013 7:02 PM

    Big mistake if they give him this, it will set the franchise back for years. So go ahead and sign him so you cant afford anyone else.

  26. soobster says: Feb 24, 2013 7:10 PM

    Does Flacco provide stability at the most crucial position in the game at age 27 for the next 5-7 years? If the answer to that question is yes, then pay the man.

    Football contracts are not baseball contracts. Everyone is acting like players can’t be cut 3-4 years into a deal if they don’t renegotiate.

    Also, Brees was not elite in San Diego. He was above average. If he was elite during his tenure in SD they wouldn’t have drafted Phillip Rivers to take over 2 years before Brees left.

  27. braven4evr says: Feb 24, 2013 7:24 PM

    As a Ravens fan I am still skeptical of Flacco. I must say that post Cameron he has played better ala Drew Brees and Phillip Rivers. If he can be more consistent during the regular season he may be worth the money. Then again give him all the money he wants and hamstring the rest of the team and it won’t matter who the OC is calling the plays.

  28. bartlettruss says: Feb 24, 2013 7:32 PM

    I understand why Flacco wants this kind of money. I won’t understand if Newsome pays it.

  29. ravenmuscle says: Feb 24, 2013 7:49 PM

    I just farted and the Pittsburgh Steelers came out.

  30. clownsfan says: Feb 24, 2013 8:05 PM

    Now Florio is drafting contracts? Hey Mike….why not work in your radio presence? Heard you filling in on the DP Show this week. You stunk.

  31. jeffml says: Feb 24, 2013 8:07 PM

    I just farted and Florio came out

  32. reed20fence says: Feb 24, 2013 8:11 PM

    The kid has got his ring and still has almost a decade of football left to play.

    Believe me when I tell you this – money isn’t everything, it’s the ONLY thing that matters at this stage. And Linta is gonna leech every penny from the coffers he can.

  33. reed20fence says: Feb 24, 2013 8:18 PM

    Also let’s get some perspective here. This will be the largest contract signing in the Ravens short history. Larger than Ray Lewis, Ed Reed, Ogden, Suggs or Yanda. And 3 of those guys are first ballot Hall of Famers. Is Joe?

  34. crawfish2011 says: Feb 24, 2013 8:18 PM

    The Ravens have no choice but to pay Flacco. Flacco gambled on himself and won.

  35. purpleattack says: Feb 24, 2013 8:22 PM

    It really blows my mind how little many fans (and media to be honest) understand about the actual game. QBs are not cars! You’re taking a casual Saturday stroll down dealerships avenue. Yes maybe you think a Civic is worth a grand over a Corolla, you go in and you buy, you feel satisfied that you paid exactly what you wanted for what you wanted. You might think that Flacco deserves X but guess what, he’s going to paid Y. Because there is no d*mn dealership next door for QBs. There are a handful of top shelf QBs and the Ravens don’t have a possibility of getting them because they are already owned by other teams. So in order to win (which they did, are people forgetting this already?) you have to get the best damn QB you can to compete out of WHAT IS AVAILABLE. No one gives a crap if you think in a perfect world he is worth 2 million less per year, because if you don’t pay him what he wants you’re stuck with Kyle Boller.

    Get over it people, Flacco is most definitely a Franchise QB, and he’s going to get paid whatever the heck he desires because there is simply no alternative out there. The guy has all the leverage int he world.

  36. dcapettini says: Feb 24, 2013 9:28 PM

    Archie Manning was the best QB I ever saw. Unfortunately he spent most of his time looking up at the sky because the Saints did not have the O line or the receivers to keep him upright. No one thinks that the Ravens will be able to get a QB as good as Joe. This franchise especially knows how hard it can be to get stability and production out of that position. The question is, are you willing to gut out the team of playmakers inorder to keep Flacco? Peyton Manning is as elite as they come and he has one Lombardi. John Elway went to the Bowl 5 times and succeeded only on the 4th and 5th tries. Defense beat Denver, New England and SF. Each of them had a chance to win, despite Flacco’s heroics. One player can’t be worth more than the team, even if he completed 11 TD passes without a pick.

    Take the draft picks and start rebuilding now.

  37. 1bucfan813 says: Feb 24, 2013 9:31 PM

    Dear Ravens,

    Do not give an average QB Top $$. They guy is not even a top 10 Qb. The Ravens won the Super Bowl because they played like a team that was hungry to win. Flacco is not the face of the franchise. I would put Rg3, Andrew Luck, Or Rusell Wilson ahead of Flacco. I even had Flacco on my fantasy league and he was my back up Qb. They guy is TOO inconsistent, and his #s are almost Rothlisberger like. Who has more rings than Flacco, and you don’t hear him saying I want to be the leagues highest paid QB.

  38. stew48 says: Feb 24, 2013 10:03 PM

    Having read the comments, I am surprisingly in agreement with most that Flacco is not a top 5 and maybe can squeeze in top 10. With the win, he is certainly entitled to a big contract, but not to be paid as #1. (or #2). As a Steeler fan, I sure hope they give him all that he wants and more. It will be beneficial to the other North teams. Those who complain about the NFL players salaries have obviously never been close to taking the punishment they do, let alone having their skills. Now if you want to discuss entertainment pay levels, I will be right there about the absurdity.

  39. wisewoo says: Feb 24, 2013 10:42 PM

    Only two QB’s in the entire NFL have been to the playoffs the past 5 consecutive years.

    Brady and Flacco.

    Only one of those two has won a Superbowl in the past 5 years.

    There is no way around it. Flacco is elite. He doesn’t put up gaudy numbers. But he wins. Wins can make you elite.
    Wins = Money from fans

    Pay him. Or he’ll be bringing in that money for some other team.

  40. contract says: Feb 24, 2013 10:43 PM

    “Archie Manning was the best QB I ever saw. Unfortunately he spent most of his time looking up at the sky because the Saints did not have the O line or the receivers to keep him upright.”

    dcapettini: So how did you determine that he was the best QB you saw if he spent most of the time on his back?

  41. carpi2 says: Feb 24, 2013 11:14 PM

    I used to be a Flacco hater. However, Flacco has had a good amount of success toward the later half of the season, in through the playoffs. That success coincided with a change in offensive coordinators.

    Is Flacco worth the biggest contract in the league? Probably not; but he has shown to be a dangerous QB, when in a system that allows him to use his big arm. Flacco has shown in a small sample that he is one of the better QB’s in the league. And, teams need to value QB’s that can win games and put them in the position to win the Super Bowl. In that respect, Flacco would demand a good sized contract.

  42. andthehomeofthejets says: Feb 24, 2013 11:23 PM

    Quarterbacks I rather have then flacco

    Brady – 5 Super Bowl appereances
    Bree’s -Super Bowl win, breaking every record
    Peyton – 2 Super Bowl appereances
    Big Ben – 2 Super Bowl wins
    Eli – 2 Super Bowl wins one as a 6th seed. As a jets fan and realist this guy is the real deal. Granted he sucked the first few years of his career, this guy now makes any receivers he has good.
    Aaron Rodgers – 1 Super Bowl win and unblievable.

    These are the top 6 quaterbacks in the Leauge. Flacco should no way be paid this high. Flacco has had the best defense in the Leauge since he became there quaterback. This is similar to a mark Sanchez situation. The defense made the team when the jets made it to 2 AFC championships. I don’t even know if this guy would be in my top 10 qbs if I started a franchise. He did win the big one so there is something to be said for that. I am just not convinced maybe ill be proven wrong

  43. johntonioholmes says: Feb 24, 2013 11:36 PM

    I hope he gets $20 mil per year because he’s worth about $9 mil.

    A QB who doesn’t lose the game for you isn’t the same as a QB who wins the game for you.

  44. ampatsisahypocrite says: Feb 24, 2013 11:43 PM

    I love how the fans posting here understand the simple concept that Flacco just isn’t elite, and now the Ravens will be grossly overpaying him thanks to what guys like Jones, Boldin and Rice have done (namely, carried him). And yet the supposed “pros” who run things will be rushing to pay this guy top dollar. Pretty hilarious when you look at it.

  45. jimmyj049 says: Feb 24, 2013 11:45 PM

    He is a good/average QB.. He is in the 10-15 rated qbs in the NFL. He had below average stats all year and 4 great games in playoffs. If they pay him 20 million a year he won’t make the playoffs again since they wont be able to pay people to get him to the playoffs. Ravents wont be back next year.

  46. bengalskuta82 says: Feb 25, 2013 6:45 AM

    Hmmm. Im not sure if the ravens really want to pay that kind of money.remember this is the qb that just only played well in just three playoff games that include the SB. During the regular season he was just the same inconsistent Flacco..I think the ravens org is in a tough place right now. Maybe they should turn to the fans to decide..after all its the fans that contribute big to paying these overpaid athletes. Àsk them!

  47. drulz29 says: Feb 25, 2013 8:17 AM

    I hope they do this deal, it’ll cripple that team financially for years to come..

  48. joeflaccoownsyoulosers says: Feb 25, 2013 9:08 AM

    You can hate all you want, but 11 TD’s 0 interceptions in the playoffs, and a Superbowl MVP is elite. Especially considering the teams he had to face to do it. Broncos and 49er’s are elite defenses. He completely destroyed the Patriots, and schooled the Colts. Does he need to improve in the regular season? yes, but he definitely deserves to get paid. Hate on haters! Superbowl champs!

  49. melikefootball says: Feb 25, 2013 10:23 AM

    When does all these contracts of this value start crippling the game. Has nothing to do with Flacco but all the me me me in the NFL and all this money for players when does it finally do in the game.

  50. redsoxu571 says: Feb 25, 2013 12:03 PM

    I think the funniest thing about all this is that everyone knows Flacco isn’t among the top QBs in the NFL, and yet we’re all resigned to the fact that he will sign a monster contract.

    Then again, there are 31 other teams out there that are rooting for Flacco to sign for more than he is worth, so it’s no wonder people are helping urge the Ravens to take the plunge.

  51. redsoxu571 says: Feb 25, 2013 12:13 PM

    Public Service Announcement:
    If you think Flacco is elite, I can respect your opinion. If you think he is not elite, I can respect that as well.

    But for the love of God, can people please stop making the argument that “Joe Flacco wins, so there is no way around it; Flacco is elite”.

    The name on the jersey is the “Baltimore Ravens”, not the “Baltimore Flaccos” (though perhaps that will change as part of this contract?). This isn’t boxing; it’s a team sport. A QB can lose you games – a QB can win you games – a QB can be elite but not win if his team completely fails him – a QB can be mediocre, but win due to the play of his teammates. We all know how important a QB is, but he doesn’t single-handedly win or lose games.

    If you want to say the Ravens won because of Flacco, go ahead and do so. But just because Flacco has won games proves very little about how good he is, as this is a team sport. “Wins” has little place in a discussion of individual value…if you think winning games means that “Flacco is elite, case closed”, please go back to school and come back here after taking a logic class or two. Thank you.

  52. ravenseattheirownpoop says: Feb 25, 2013 12:31 PM

    Somewhere Aaron Rodgers is smiling

  53. enoughofthatalready says: Feb 25, 2013 1:07 PM

    Anquan Boldin and Jacoby Jones won the Super Bowl. Having said that, no football player period is worth $26 million for one year.

  54. cowboyzshininstar says: Feb 25, 2013 3:14 PM

    Too much $$$ not worth it. Where’s Alex Smith in all this?

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