Ozzie Newsome downplays importance of Flacco extension


How much leverage does quarterback Joe Flacco have in extension talks with the Ravens? Plenty, and the Ravens know it.

They know it so well that they’re trying to create some leverage of their own, by taking the position that they don’t need to knock down Flacco’s $28.55 million cap number with a new deal.

“We are in a position that we can be very active in free agency without having to get something done with Joe,” G.M. Ozzie Newsome told reporters on Wednesday, via the team’s official website.

They need to get something done with Joe because only $36 million of the $62 million he has received in the last three years has hit the cap. So now the cap number balloons from $14.55 million. Next year, it’ll pass $31 million.

That’s why a simple shuffling of dollars won’t be enough. The Ravens need to extend the deal. Which means Flacco may want to push the $20.1 million average of his last deal even higher, perhaps surpassing the current high-water mark of $22 million per year, set in 2013 by Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers.

The next step for the Ravens could be, after meeting with agent Joe Linta, to begin leaking vague details about how much Flacco wants to be paid on an extension, like someone with the Giants apparently did last year when the team was negotiating with quarterback Eli Manning, who supposedly was looking to be the highest-paid player in football.

Of course he was, but only because the leverage arising from the looming application of the franchise tag put him in a position where something more than $22 million per year was reasonable to request.

On the surface, it’s laughable to think that Flacco or Eli deserve the “highest paid” player label (which definitely would resolve the “elite” debate, as to either of them). But here’s the thing. As the salary cap continues to grow by $10 million per year or more, the tide needs to rise. Inevitably, someone who may not be the best player in football needs to become the highest-paid player in football, especially when no one has leapfrogged Rodgers in the nearly three years since he leapfrogged Flacco.

Then, the stage will be set for the truly best players in football to get what they deserve, too.

17 responses to “Ozzie Newsome downplays importance of Flacco extension

  1. Ravens will do the smart thing and eat Flacco’s contract number this year, rather than giving him an extension coming off an injury. Guaranteeing a pile of money to Dennis Pitta before he was really healthy is what helped get them into their current cap mess. Don’t look for the Ravens to make the same mistake again.

  2. Ozzie, I love you but stop the charade. Yes, you might not HAVE to do Flacco’s deal over but please dont act like the Ravens have plenty of cap space to be active. We all know (Ravens Fans) there are some bad contracts on the books right now.

    Not all your fault, no one knew that Pitta/Webb/Monroe would be consistently hurt but they are still some contracts that need addressing.

    And before we all start bashing Flacco, let’s see what he does with the contract negotiations. He is on record as saying he want’s to win and will do what it takes to field a winner. If he doesn’t budge, then vilify him.

  3. It’s simple – if Flacco puts winning before money he’ll accept far less. $30 million plus (what it may take to extend him) is 1/4th of the salary cap

    Despite Ravens fans INSISTENCE that Flacco signed a Team Friendly contract, they’re delusional – and they can’t be the players in FA that other teams will be

    The only thing that may save the Ravens is the fact that Goodell was caught embezzling $120 million from the NFLPA that now must be returned and might inflate the Salary Cap – but they’ll still not be able to be as active in the market as other teams who spend less foolishly.

    The bad news is that Goodell looks to be on the road to Indictment, and when the Commissioner of a sport is corrupt and unfair, the sport is unfair, and that’s NOT good for the NFL

  4. Brady doesn’t get less. They pay him off the books through that consulting company of his. The Pats cheat at everything.

  5. @joesixpack – I agree and disagree with you. The first 3 years of his contract were team friendly, with the highest cap hit being last year at 14ish million.

    Now hit the years where they are not team friendly. Ravens knew what they were getting into. Either they agree and renegotiation begins or they have a tough decision to make.

  6. There is simply no such thing as a “team-friendly” contract, unless it involves a total compensation that is below the market rate for a player. Every dollar that goes to the player, whether it’s labeled salary, bonus, earned, NLTBE, etc., must hit the cap at some point. The so-called “team-friendly” deals like this one ultimately become “unfriendly,” just like this one is becoming. Why do the media keep using this term?

  7. “HoF Brady takes less, but this average Joe want to go north of $20m? There’s a reason NE owns the AFC.”

    You’re right! There is a reason. Cheating and having three dysfunctional franchises in your division year after year makes it easier to return to the playoffs year after year.

  8. First off Brady does not take less he got more in bonus money way more. Second Flacco has the same amount of rings and super bowl MVPs as Rodgers so that’s why he gets paid damn near the same as Rodgers

  9. Patriots and Steelers’ fans love to rip on Flacco. We understand how nervous you are. After all, he tore the Pats to mincemeat when the Ravens won the SB and then he humiliated the Steelers on their own turf two times in a row. Best news is — Flacco’s a standup guy. Not a ball deflating cheater and not a felon like some QBs out there. LOL.

  10. If you call signing guys like Trent Richardson being “very active” in free agency then okay. :/

    With roughly $6.3 million in cap space and talking about putting the franchise tag on Justin Tucker, (the tag for Kickers this year is $4.12 million) after signing Richardson,
    that leaves about $1.1 million to resign Kelechi Osemele and Courtney Upshaw. Then there’s this thing called the NFL Draft coming up in April. :/

    Good luck with that!

  11. And the pats tore the Ravens to mincemeat on their way to their Super Bowl win,and what does Whitney Harbaugh do?calls Grigson and starts one of the worst witch hunts in nfl history!yea the Ravens are truly a stand up organization. NOT!!!as far as the steelers,they seem to be your favorite team,as you are on all their post.by the way how does it feel to be bradyed out of the postseason and no playoffs since,only a5 win 11 loss season! What a joke.carry on.

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