Flacco expressed the same sentiment last offseason. But, according to sources close to him, the quarterback also knows that any real leverage in negotiations only will be gained during the playoffs after a season in which he failed to reach many of his 2010 marks.
Flacco, who will make $200,000 for every postseason victory, has won four road playoff games in his first three seasons -- quite rare in NFL history -- but he also has struggled in many of those games and been incubated by the Ravens' running game and defense. He did throw for 176 yards and two touchdowns in Sunday's 20-13 victory over the Houston Texans, helping the Ravens reach the AFC Championship Game for the second time in his four NFL seasons.
The likelihood of Flacco receiving a new contract rises if he makes strides during this postseason, and it could create more pressure on the organization to get a deal done. If he doesn't perform well, it will be much more likely that he must play out the duration of his rookie deal.
In the meantime, Flacco already has secured about $6.4 million for his 2012 contract. In addition to $1.36 million in base salary, he has made $4.4 million in escalators based on playing time, plus other bonuses.