No decision yet on Adalius Thomas

OWINGS MILLS -- The Baltimore Ravens have yet to determine whether to assign the franchise tag to retain All-Pro outside linebacker Adalius Thomas. It's doubtful they will be able to create the salary-cap space underneath the league limit of $109 million to prevent Thomas from becoming an unrestricted free agent by giving him the designation.

It would cost $7.2 million, the average of the top five linebacker salaries in the NFL and make the former sixth-round draft pick the highest paid player on the team.
Under league guidelines, that dollar figure wouldn't include a signing bonus and the entire amount would count against the Ravens' 2007 salary cap.
The deadline to use the tag is Feb. 22. Free agency begins March 2.
Thomas has already said he doesn't expect to be franchised. Also, signing Thomas to a long-term deal would be a difficult proposition because of his reportedly high asking price of a signing bonus between $10 million and $12 million.
The 49ers, New England Patriots, Cleveland Browns and Green Bay Packers are expected to be among Thomas' suitors. NOTE: Offensive guard Keydrick Vincent is recovering well from his postseason sports hernia surgery. Vincent, who carries a $1.6 million base salary in 2007, is expected to be retained by the club and compete for the starting right guard job next season.

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