Flacco agrees to terms

OWINGS MILLS -- The Baltimore Ravens struck a deal with their quarterback of the future Wednesday night, agreeing to a five-year contract with a maximum value of $30 million with first-round draft pick Joe Flacco. His agent, Joe Linta, confirmed the deal via a text message.

It includes $8.75 million in guaranteed money.

Following two days of negotiations at the Ravens' training complex, Flacco's agent and Ravens vice president of football administration Pat Moriarty reached an accord on the amount of guaranteed money, escalator clauses' value and base salaries.

Flacco is the fourth first-round pick to agree to terms, following Miami Dolphins offensive tackle Jake Long, Atlanta Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan and Oakland Raiders running back Darren McFadden.

Drafted 18th overall, Flacco is slated to compete for the starting job with Troy Smith and Kyle Boller.

The 6-foot-6, 235-pound New Jersey native impressed the coaching staff and team officials during minicamps with his powerful arm strength and poise. He was surprisingly mobile when leaving the pocket.

"I want to get in and play as soon as possible," Flacco said recently. "I know it's a tough thing to do at any position, and especially quarterback. I feel I'm capable of doing that.

"The big thing is the mental part. You have to be ready and I think I'm ready. If anyone could come in and start right away, I think I'm that guy."

Now, the Ravens have eight remaining draft picks to secure to contracts prior to Tuesday's opening practice at McDaniel College. Rookies, quarterbacks and injured veterans are scheduled to report Monday.

The Ravens previously agreed to terms with third-round offensive tackle Oniel Cousins on a three-year deal worth $1.593 million that included a $443,500 signing bonus.

Aaron Wilson covers the Baltimore Ravens for the Carroll County Times and the Annapolis Capital.

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