Now that quarterback Joe Flacco is poised to become the highest paid player in the NFL by virtue of a $120.6 million contract, the Ravens aren't expected to use the franchise tag on any of their other unrestricted free agents.
That development dropped the exclusive franchise tag to $19.136 million, the average of the top five quarterback salary-cap numbers. That figure is derived from Detroit Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford's $20.82 million salary-cap number ($12.5 million base salary) as well as New York Giants quarterback Eli Manning's $20.35 million ($13 million base salary), Denver Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning's $20 million ($20 million base salary), New Orleans Saints quarterback Drew Brees' $17.4 million ($9.75 million base salary) and San Diego Chargers quarterback Philip Rivers' $17.11 million ($12 million base salary).
The NFL's annual pre-draft meat market wraps up Tuesday, but one of the players generating the most buzz at the NFL scouting combine in Indianapolis was former Dunbar star Tavon Austin. His 4.34 in the 40-yard dash Sunday validated the gigabytes of electrifying game tape the wide receiver compiled at West Virginia. Will he be there when the Ravens pick?
Contract negotiations between the Ravens and quarterback Joe Flacco have yet to relaunch, but it's already becoming clear the kind of elite asking price that the Super Bowl Most Valuable Player hopes to command.
As if the parade and appreciation of Baltimore sports fans wasn't enough, Ravens coach John Harbaugh received an especially important call Tuesday from someone wanting to offer his personal congratulations: President Barack Obama.
Now, just over a year since winning a national title with the Crimson Tide, Courtney Upshaw's second in four years in Tuscaloosa, the Ravens rookie linebacker has returned to New Orleans, the site of Sunday's Super Bowl.
Every morning, Monday through Friday, blogger Matt Vensel will hook you up with reading material -- mostly on the Ravens but with some other Baltimore sports stuff, too -- to skim through as you slug down coffee and slack off at the start of your workday.
The Super Bowl has created a veritable cottage industry of parties surrounding it, and nowhere is this more evident than in the XLVII game in New Orleans, a city that knows how to have fun. Baltimore Ravens and San Francisco 49er fans join athletes and celebrities enjoying the city's food, drinks and hospitality.
San Francisco 49ers wide receiver Michael Crabtree might not have the wow factor and name value of some of the league's elite receivers, but it will take a team effort from the Ravens secondary to limit the damage in the Super Bowl.