Will Ray Rice be a Team Player This Off Season?

Ravens RB Ray Rice

Ravens RB Ray Rice

The Baltimore Ravens franchised star RB Ray Rice earlier this year, but he is still waiting to sign a new contract. Rice is hoping for a long-term deal with money similar to what other elite RBs like Houston’s Arian Foster and Seattle’s Marshawn Lynch received this off season.

While Rice waits to sign a new deal with the Ravens, he is not sure whether or not he will continue with the team’s off season workouts scheduled to begin later this month. Even if he does not work out with the team, he will continue to workout on his own and promises to stay in shape during the rest of the off season.

ESPN’s Andrew Brandt wrote about the trickiness of contract negotiations for RBs and senses that the Ravens are likely to commit to the level of contract desired by Rice, but the tag may persist if Rice stays intent on reaching the level that Titan’s RB Chris Johnson received last August when he earned more than the established market with guarantees exceeding $30 million.

The negotiation will be a fine balance of what Rice can do for the Ravens and the fair market value of his position. Rice is starting his 5th season in the NFL and is still in his prime. RBs typically have short shelf lives due to the high demands of their position, but Rice is still young and has a lot of gas left in his tank.

The Ravens are known for being fair and taking care of their guys in contract renewals and I have complete faith in their ability to do the same for Rice. He has definitely earned his keep and since the Ravens franchise tagged him, it is obvious that they do too, they just need to name the right price to make Rice happy.

Rice is a star RB and has impressive stats in his first four seasons in the NFL. He is a fan favorite and the fans are patiently waiting for the Ravens to ensure Rice’s future with the team by signing him to a long-term deal. I can’t wait to see him run the ball again, he’s very good at it!

Whether he works out with the team or own his own, I have complete faith in Rice’s ability to stay in shape and on track for the 2012 season. He did it last year when there was a lockout and he will definitely do it again.

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