New deal kicks Stover to NFL top

Raven's $1M a year leads kickers

Ismail nears pact

March 04, 2000|By Ken Murray | Ken Murray,SUN STAFF

Matt Stover's new contract agreement with the Ravens not only makes him one of the three highest-paid kickers in the NFL, but it also surpasses the other two in gross average, according to his agent, Jim Steiner.

Stover agreed to a four-year, $4 million contract on Thursday, with a $1 million signing bonus. The $1 million average tops that of both Jason Hanson of the Detroit Lions and John Kasay of the Carolina Panthers, Steiner said.

Steiner said Stover, an unrestricted free agent, also received a $1 million-a-year offer from the Cincinnati Bengals, but it was not structured as well as the Ravens' offer.

Meanwhile, the agent for free-agent wide receiver Qadry Ismail said he is close to a deal with the Ravens as well.

"We're close in terms of numbers," said Baltimore-based Tony Agnone. "It's the payout [that still has to be settled]."

Two other former Ravens -- and Agnone clients -- were scheduled for visits to other teams. Quarterback Scott Mitchell, who started the first two games of the season for the Ravens, arrived in Cincinnati yesterday for a workout, and will visit the Dallas Cowboys tomorrow. Both teams are looking for a backup quarterback.

And special teamer/running back Tony Vinson (Towson University) will visit the Panthers.

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