The Ravens have maintained an active dialogue with offensive tackle Eugene Monroe, and there's now optimism that an agreement can be reached, according to league sources.
Monroe and the Ravens have continued to negotiate to bridge a significant gap that existed last week.
Although no deal is imminent and there's still a realistic chance that Monroe could test free agency -- during which other NFL teams could get involved that might potentially increase his asking price -- there is increased hope from both sides that something can be worked out.
The Ravens would ideally like to hold onto Monroe, 26, after trading fourth- and fifth-round draft picks to the Jacksonville Jaguars in October in exchange for him.
Here's a look at the market for offensive tackles as the framework of potential deals becomes clear, thanks to information from sources:
Kansas City Chiefs offensive tackle Branden Albert is expected to sign with the Miami Dolphins for an average of $9.5 million annually.
If the Ravens can reach a compromise on a deal with Monroe, it's expected to fall somewhere between $8.5 million to $9 million, according to sources. Sources said there are other undisclosed NFL teams that are expected to bid on Monroe if he hits the open market Tuesday afternoon when the free-agent signing period begins.
St. Louis Rams offensive tackle Rodger Saffold is expected to sign with the Oakland Raiders for roughly $8 million per year, but he is still in talks with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
Oakland Raiders offensive tackle Jared Veldheer is expected to sign with the Arizona Cardinals for between $7 million and $7.5 million.
Cincinnati Bengals offensive tackle Anthony Collins is expected to sign with the Buccaneers for between $6.5 million to $7 million provided that he doesn't re-sign with the Bengals.
NFL teams are allowed to negotiate with free agents now, but they can't make contracts official until 4 p.m. Tuesday.
twitter.com/RavensInsiderCopyright © 2014, The Baltimore Sun