Ravens president Dick Cass and vice president of football administration Pat Moriarty will meet Saturday with Flacco’s agent, Joe Linta, to begin discussing the framework of a long-term deal.
They also are planning on meeting with Todd France, Rice’s agent, before team officials leave Indianapolis. In Rice’s case, the franchise tag — which can be applied up until March 5 — appears to be a formality, and that will buy both the team and the running back’s representative some time to work on a deal. Flacco has one more year remaining on his rookie contract, but Bisciotti and other team officials don’t want him to head into the season without an extension.
“Sometimes in negotiations, it can be done in two days or it can take 12 months,” Newsome said. “I think there is a willingness with Joe Linta and on Joe Flacco’s part, and Steve and the organization, to try and get the deal done. We’re going to push toward that.”
Harbaugh also expressed confidence that the team will reach deals with Flacco and Rice, saying, “I think we can do it. The reality is they’re going to take a little longer. We’re going to have a lot of contract conversations and try to get [them] signed. … Ultimately we all believe those guys will be on the team for a long time.”
In injury news, wide receiver Torrey Smith had surgery to repair a double sports hernia. He apparently was dealing with it all season. Cornerback Cary Williams had a procedure to repair the labrum in his hip. Both are expected to be ready for training camp.
A couple of other tidbits: Newsome reiterated that the team is not in the market for a backup running back and it will allow Anthony Allen every opportunity to seize the job. Both he and Harbaugh also downplayed any effort to go after an elite receiver on the free agent market.