Package deal: Suggs suggests trio give discount

'Hopefully we all can stay,' Raven says of fellow linebackers and potential free agents Lewis, Scott

January 26, 2009|By Jamison Hensley | Jamison Hensley,jamison.hensley@baltsun.com

Just days after Ravens owner Steve Bisciotti said he hoped star linebacker Ray Lewis would take a "hometown discount" on his next contract and end his career with the Ravens, Terrell Suggs went a step further.

Suggs suggested that he and fellow linebackers Lewis and Bart Scott could all remain with the Ravens if they give the team a discount.

Suggs, Lewis and Scott can become unrestricted free agents at the end of February.

"We really don't want to play without one another because we've been playing together for so long," Suggs told Sirius NFL radio.

Bisciotti also said last week that the team wouldn't use the franchise tag on Lewis but hoped the 10-time Pro Bowl linebacker would re-sign.

Now that the Ravens don't intend to use the tag on Lewis, it will be interesting to see whether they put it on Suggs again. If they applied the tag to him next month, they would have to pay him 120 percent of his 2008 salary for one season ($10.2 million).

But Suggs, who led the Ravens with eight sacks during the regular season and was selected to his third Pro Bowl, said he wouldn't be tempted to go elsewhere if he became a free agent.

"Not at the cost of leaving Baltimore," Suggs said. "If they treat me fair, then it shouldn't be a problem. I have all the faith in the world that they'll do that. I think they'll address all three of us with what they see as fair. I think if all three of us can come in the middle and form an agreement, then we shouldn't have a problem.

"We've already seen one of our other brothers [linebacker Adalius Thomas] walk. We really don't want to see too many more of us walk away from the city of Baltimore. Hopefully we all can stay, definitely, on a home discount."

Even if the linebackers stay, there will be big changes on defense for the Ravens, who lost defensive coordinator Rex Ryan and linebackers coach Mike Pettine to the New York Jets.

Suggs said he played in the AFC championship game with an injured shoulder that was about 35 percent to 40 percent and still sacked Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger twice.

But he indicated that he wouldn't need surgery.

"All I got to do is work and get it back healthy so I can train this offseason," Suggs said.

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