The team finished 8-8, but Ravens GM Ozzie Newsome is hopeful that his club will return to their winning ways in 2014.
In an in-depth conversation with the Ravens' official website, Newsome gave fans a look into how the offseason came together, and laid out his plans for the organization's present and future. One of his top priorities was locking up key players like Terrell Suggs and Haloti Ngata.
"We wanted two things from these contracts," Newsome said. "The first is to create some cap room and the other is to try and make sure these two players remained Ravens forever. We got 'Sizzle' done and we're still hopeful with Haloti."
The team secured Suggs' services with a five-year, $28.5 million deal in February ($11 million signing bonus). With Suggs' deal done, the team has turned its attention to Ngata, who is set to become a free agent following the 2015 season.
Here's what else we learned from Newsome's comments:
» The Ravens set out to extend the contracts of Eugene Monroe, Jacoby Jones, Daryl Smith, Dennis Pitta and Corey Graham. The Ravens got deals done with all of those players besides Graham, who left for Buffalo.
"We lost Corey when we thought we could get him, but Buffalo paid a premium," Newsome revealed, adding that he next wants to retain Torrey Smith, Justin Tucker and Jimmy Smith. "We knew we couldn't sign Arthur Jones. He earned a huge salary and the Colts gave it to him. We couldn't go there and sign other players we needed. The $10 million increase in the salary cap helped us get the others done."
» The Hall of Fame tight end talked about having more players who can win one-on-one battles when it counts.
"We added one with Steve Smith and re-signed Pitta and Jacoby," Newsome said. "(Owen) Daniels can do that, and we know Joe (Flacco) can do it. I like what I've seen from Ray Rice. We'll get the best of what he has. On defense, Suggs and Haloti are difference-makers and so are the corners (Lardarius Webb and Jimmy Smith). Elvis (Dumervil) is in that category. C.J. (Mosley) and Daryl (Smith) can make big plays."