It’s been well-documented that the Ravens would like to sign wide receiver Torrey Smith, nose tackle Haloti Ngata and cornerback Jimmy Smith to contract extensions before the start of the 2014 season.
Little has been said about Pro Bowl third-year kicker Justin Tucker’s contract, but the Ravens are working on a contract extension for him, too, general manager Ozzie Newsome told Kevin Byrne, the team’s senior vice president of public and community relations, in an article posted on the team's website.
Tucker, the former undrafted free agent who signed a three-year, $1.44 million contract with the Ravens in 2012, will be a restricted free agent following the 2014 campaign.
Asked by Byrne about extending the contracts of Torrey Smith, Jimmy Smith and Tucker, Newsome said: “We’re trying to get these done, but we haven’t yet.”
In two seasons, Tucker, 24, has established himself as one of the top kickers in the NFL. He’s converted 68-of-74 field-goal attempts and made all 68 of his extra points. He’s also made six game-winning field goals, including a franchise-record 61-yarder that beat the Detroit Lions last season.
Tucker’s 38 made field goals and 140 points last season were both franchise records.
He is due to make $570,000 in 2014, so Tucker will obviously be getting a hefty raise soon.
As for Torrey Smith, he’s entering the final year of his rookie deal and team officials have long said that re-signing him is a priority. Smith has made it clear that he doesn’t want to go anywhere and both sides have expressed confidence in reaching a deal.
The Ravens have already exercised Jimmy Smith’s option for 2015, so the 25-year-old is under contractual control for at least two more seasons. But the Ravens obviously want to make sure that their 2011 first-round pick is around for even longer.
Ngata, 30, has two years remains on the five-year, $61 million pact that he signed in 2011. However, his salary cap number is a team-high $16 million over each of the next two seasons. The Ravens would like to trim that number, while also extending the deal to make it more likely that Ngata, like his long-time teammate Terrell Suggs, spends his entire career with the organization.
“We’re still hopeful with Ngata,” Newsome told Byrne.
Newsome, who doesn’t traditionally grant interviews with the local media other than the team’s season-ending news conference and the pre-draft luncheon, was otherwise pleased with some of the offseason changes that the team has made. He also told Byrne that there’s potential for another move or two before the start of the regular season.
“We feel pretty good right now,” Newsome said . “We could tweak the roster a little bit between now and the regular season, but overall, we accomplished a lot since the end of last season.”