Flacco, Ravens OK deal

The Baltimore Sun

The Ravens agreed to a five-year deal with first-round quarterback Joe Flacco late last night, an industry source said.

It is believed that the deal could be worth about $30 million, including $8.75 million guaranteed.

Phone calls to the Ravens were not returned.

Flacco, the 18th overall pick in this year's draft, becomes the fourth player in this year's first round to agree to a deal and is one of the earliest Ravens first-round picks to reach an agreement.

He will report to training camp Monday and compete with Kyle Boller and Troy Smith for the starting job. Flacco impressed the coaching staff with his ability to pick up the offense during offseason camps.

Joe Linta, Flacco's agent, arrived in Baltimore on Tuesday and the sides made progress late that day, an industry source said. The Ravens and Flacco finalized the deal about 10 last night to end weeks of negotiations, the source added.

Flacco's deal is worth significantly more than that of the Cleveland Browns' Brady Quinn, who was the only quarterback drafted in the second half of last year's first round. Quinn, the 22nd overall pick, received a five-year, $20.2 million contract that included $7.75 million in guaranteed money.

With a big frame (6 feet 6, 235 pounds) and big arm, Flacco became the highest-drafted quarterback in the Ravens' 13-year existence. Boller, the only other quarterback selected by the Ravens in the first round, was taken with the 19th pick in 2003.

An excellent long-range passer from the University of Delaware, Flacco can make all the throws and has the confidence to deliver them.

He transferred from the University of Pittsburgh after two seasons because he didn't feel he was given the chance to compete. In two seasons at Delaware, he completed 63.4 percent of his passes for 7,046 yards (second most in school history), throwing 41 touchdown passes and 15 interceptions.

"I had to go down to the minor leagues of college football to prove who I was," Flacco said a day after being drafted by the Ravens. "I'm going to carry that with me for the rest of my life and use it for the best."


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