King: “Real chance” John Harbaugh doesn’t sign extension in Baltimore

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That Friday night announcement from the Ravens seemed to secure the future of coach John Harbaugh in Baltimore, but he’ll remain under contract beyond 2019 only if the two sides work out a new contract. And maybe they won’t.

Peter King writes in his latest Football Morning in America column that a “real chance” exists Harbaugh won’t sign an extension, opting instead to finish his current deal and leave in 2020.

Coaches rarely do that, opting instead for the bird in the hand that comes from both getting paid and, perhaps more importantly, remaining an NFL head coach without taking the risk of finding himself without a place to sit when the annual calliope quits playing. But maybe Harbaugh, who emerged as the hottest name on this year’s market weeks before the market even opened, realizes that he’ll have options in 2020, possibly for much more money and more power than Baltimore will provide.

Whether Harbaugh would walk or not, the notion that he could provides a strong counterweight to the message that was received by the league at large from the team’s out-of-the-blue proclamation/admonition that he’s under contract through 2019. If/when (when) teams like the Dolphins or maybe the Broncos call the Ravens inquiring about Harbaugh and when the Ravens want way too much compensation for him as an opener, the fact that the Ravens have him under contract for only one year and he’ll leave as a free agent with no compensation at all could get them to take what they can get before the distractions of a lame-duck season that results in them getting nothing.

The Ravens are regraded as a “very smart group,” likely smart enough to not overplay their hand. Smart enough to know that Harbaugh a year from now will have the kind of demand for his services that would make him happily coach out his contract and then do what no coach ever does: Become a true free agent.

26 responses to “King: “Real chance” John Harbaugh doesn’t sign extension in Baltimore

  1. In practical terms, he and Pete Carroll are at the same level. Lots of post-seasons over the last few years and one great year and a ring. Pete just got an 11 million a year extension for 2 more years to coach the Seahawks.
    That pretty much sets the market, I assume.

  2. The problem was Flacco not Harbaugh. Changing to Lamar saved his job. The Ravens are still playing very hard for Harbaugh and haven’t came out flat or quit on any games since Flacco was benched. Once Flacco is cut or traded in the offseason this team will get huge cap relief ($57M savings from Flacco over the next 3 years) and new GM Eric Decosta will be able to assemble talent around Lamar.

  3. It’s somewhat ironic that coaches, who think they are smarter than players, rarely maximize their own values in any form of free agency. It’s obvious that, after the quarterback, the HC is the most valuable person in an organization, because rarely are they compensated as such. Harbaugh is a real talent.

  4. Would not miss him on Sundays. But he must be doing something right from Monday-Saturday for them to never completely be in the gutter during his tenure.

    Now Flacco on the other hand… should’ve been gone a long time ago.

  5. I’m scared of what the Patriots will do to this team if they play them. Our team isn’t man enough to beat them.

  6. The Ravens have plenty of money to keep Harbs happy and it doesnt affect the salary cap – I think his relationship with the owner and his comfort zone in Baltimore will keep him around for another deal – but if he wants to break the bank some where else he will have an oppurtunity to do that

  7. So long as they win Sunday this team has a very real shot at making a deep push in the AFC. Only Kansas City is a quality opponent and one would think Harbs would like to stick around and build on what they have already accomplished this season.

  8. If you live by your QB; you should die by the QB you decide to stay with. Adam Gase and tannehill should die together and NOW! If that is not apparent now; then it never will be.
    Out with the old and in with the new. The only consistent person on our offense in the past 7 losing seasons; is tannehill. He must be let go at the end of this season. There is nothing else to consider.
    All that Miami needs is two good QBs on offense and a pup in training. None of the young starter coaches have worked out. So now it is time for a more experienced coach to try his hand.

  9. Biscuit will give Harbs whatever he wants. And if he thinks other teams are sniffing around or Harbaugh wants out, it wouldn’t surprise me if Biscuit/DeCosta traded him.

  10. Why not just hire Jim Caldwell? Way more responsible for the Ravens championship and his teams have as many playoff appearances since 2012 as well.

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