The walk year of Flacco's contract coincided with a season in which he emerged as a star, silenced his critics and netted a Lombardi Trophy for the Baltimore Ravens.
The result of that rise was a six-year contract worth $120.6 million. A staggering $52 million was fully guaranteed.
Flacco's agent, Joe Linta, explained that the Ravens have no one to blame but themselves for any salary-cap issues. According to Linta, Flacco walked away from a five-year extension that would have averaged $16 million a year last summer. Why? The Ravens were unwilling to add $1 million more to the final year of that deal, according to Linta.
"One million dollars six years from now, in the base salary non-guaranteed money, and they walked away," Linta recently told USA Today's Jim Corbett. "It cost them $35 million. So I have no sympathy. None.
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"I've never in my life seen a dumber move. I guess people can say, 'Well, Joe was dumb, too.' It could have been (dumb), God forbid, if he got hurt. But $1 million to (owner) Steve Bisciotti six years from now? That's like 100 bucks for you or me today."
Linta might be coming off as gloating a bit, but he's also defending his client. Flacco has taken plenty of heat for his contract. Linta's point is that the Ravens' lack of foresight, not Flacco, put them in that position.