I don’t get the sense that anything is imminent, but the Ravens have been having ongoing conversations with Joe Flacco’s agent, Joe Linta, about a contract extension for the quarterback. Linta and Ravens vice president of football administration, Pat Moriarty, met last week for several hours at an undisclosed location, and they’ve done some negotiating over the phone since. Even if there is a difference in opinion right now in terms of Flacco’s value, both sides are clearly working hard to bridge the gap.
Former Ravens cornerback Chris Carr, who was released before the start of free agency, spent yesterday in Kansas City meeting with Chiefs officials and he reportedly will be in Minnesota today to talk to the Vikings. There are very few solid cornerbacks remaining on the market, so I don’t think Carr, who played very well for the Ravens in 2010 before an injury plagued 2011, will have too difficult of a time finding a job.
Speaking of former Ravens, free-agent wide receiver Lee Evans reportedly met with the Jacksonville Jaguars on Wednesday, but left their facility without a contract. I know Ravens fans probably washed their hands of him seconds after he couldn’t haul in the touchdown pass that would have likely gotten the team to the Super Bowl, but I’m interested to see what becomes of Evans. He just never showed that speed and explosiveness that he was known for during his days with the Buffalo Bills. Whether that was because that foot/ankle injury, a lack of chemistry with Flacco and the Ravens offense or the fact that Evans just doesn’t have much left, that should become clearer this season with what Evans does if anything.
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It hasn’t been listed as an offseason priority, like bolstering the offensive line, finding another pass rusher and upgrading the receiving corps, but the Ravens would very much like to strengthen their special teams coverage teams. Only one team allowed more yards per kickoff return and only eight teams allowed more yards per punt return. The Ravens also allowed three return touchdowns. I don’t see them investing a lot of money to do this, but there are some pretty accomplished special teams players on the market, including one of their own free agents, Brendon Ayanbadejo. Kassim Osgood, Legedu Naanee, Isaiah Ekejiuba, Devin Thomas and Derrick Martin are among the free agents who have played well on special teams in the past.
Because many of you continue to ask, the Ravens sit just under $5 million under the salary cap as of this morning. They’ll have to set aside enough to sign their draft picks, although that won’t require as much money as usual because the Ravens pick 29th in the first round, and they don’t have a fourth-round pick after the Evans trade.