BALTIMORE, MD - AUGUST 25: Ray Rice #27 of the Baltimore Ravens and teammate Vonta Leach #44 celebrate Rice's touchdown during the first half of a preseason game against the Washington Redskins at M&T Bank Stadium on August 25, 2011 in Baltimore, Maryland. (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images)
Well actually, a little bit more. Ray Rice signed a 5-year 40-million dollar contract yesterday as the deadline approached for franchise-tagged players to be re-signed.
According to ESPN: The Ravens and their standout running back went right down to the 4 p.m. deadline before hammering out the deal. Had Rice not signed, he would have played the 2012 season under the $7.7 million franchise tag tender.
Instead, he will get $17 million this year and $8 million in 2013.
As you can tell; the contract is very front-loaded, which gives the Baltimore Ravens more cap room to work with next year to re-sign Joe Flacco (and possibly Ed Reed). This was a very smart contract in terms of making everyone happy and planning out the salary cap for the future. Ray Rice will be making more this year than he would've been on the previous franchise-tag (by about 10 million more dollars), but it leaves room for the Ravens to make more moves in the future while keeping one of their most productive offensive players. I, for one, am a huge fan of this contract.