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Tag day is here for Ravens, Rice

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Tag day is here for Ravens, Rice

The countdown for Ray Rice to land a contract extension is down to the final hours.

The Pro Bowl running back has until Monday at 4 p.m. to agree to terms with the Ravens.

If no deal is struck, Rice will play for the Ravens in 2012 under the franchise-tag designation, earning 7.7 million on a one-year tender. The two sides would then try again to strike a deal in 2013, with the Ravens holding the option of putting the franchise tag on Rice for a second year.

Rice, who led the NFL in yards from scrimmage in 2011, is one of a handful of high-profile franchise players facing Mondays deadline. Others include New England wide receiver Wes Welker and Chicago running back Matt Forte.

Neither the Ravens nor Rices agent have publicly commented on the negotiations in recent weeks, but several media reports have characterized the sides as far apart and unlikely to strike a deal.

It has been reported that Rice wants a deal that would put him in the top tier of running backs along with Minnesotas Adrian Peterson (seven years, 100 million) and Tennessees Chris Johnson (four years, 53 million), while the Ravens envision him more in the second tier with Houstons Arian Foster (five years, 43.5 million) and Philadelphias LeSean McCoy (five years, 45 million).

Either way, Rice would become one of the highest-paid running backs in the game.

Here is what is at stake today:

If Rice signs by 4 p.m.:

He would earn more than 20 million in guaranteed salary and possibly 25 million or more, as opposed to the 7.7 million he would make as a franchise player in 2012.

The Ravens would lock up the longterm services of their offensive engine, who has generated more than 6,600 yards of rushing and receiving yards in four seasons.

The Ravens would eliminate the distraction of wondering whether Rice would miss part of training camp, as is his right as a franchise player.

If Rice doesnt sign today:
He might only play one more year for the Ravens, depending on how the negotiations go next year and whether he hits the open market as an unrestricted free agent.

He has the option of not signing his tender, skipping training camp and the exhibition season and not joining the team until the regular season begins; franchise players cant be fined for holding out before the season.

The Ravens could find themselves in the position of seeing three of their cornerstone players (Rice, quarterback Joe Flacco and safety Ed Reed) simultaneously reach unrestricted free agency after the 2012 season.

Rice runs the risk of getting injured in 2012 season and seeing his value drop.

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Ravens lower concession prices at M&T Bank Stadium ahead of 2018 season

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USA TODAY Sports

Ravens lower concession prices at M&T Bank Stadium ahead of 2018 season

Enjoying a game at M&T Bank Stadium just became a little more affordable.

On Thursday, the Ravens introduced their new "Flock Friendly Fare," reducing the price of 21 of their most popular food and beverage items.  

The change comes as the organization focuses on revamping the fan experience in 2018. Fans will see an average of 33 percent in total savings and up to 53 percent savings on a single item.  

"As a lot of you probably know, after every game we survey fans to see how we're doing; what have we done well and what have we not done well. Over the years, one of the biggest criticisms we received was for the gameday concessions prices," Ravens President Dick Cass said on the team's website

Alcoholic beverages were all reduced by $1 with the addition of domestic 12 ounce beer for $5.

Chicken tenders with fries went from $11 to $7, while a slice of pizza went from $8.50 to $6. No single item will cost above $9.

On average, you will now be able to feed a family of four for $44 compared to $66.75 in years past. To see all of the reductions, click the arrow in the post below. 

In 2017, the Atlanta Falcons reduced their concession prices upon opening their brand new Mercedes-Benz Stadium. The Ravens, however, are expecting to lose $1.5 million in concession revenue due to the change. 

Introducing our new Flock Friendly Fare!

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Vegas odds against Lamar Jackson starting for Ravens in 2018

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AP Images

Vegas odds against Lamar Jackson starting for Ravens in 2018

Vegas has spoken and they are not optimistic about rookie Lamar Jackson starting under center for the Ravens in 2018.

Bovado, an online gambling site, has set the odds on how the top 2018 rookies will perform and they have Jackson getting 0.5 starts this season.

That number will come as a surprise considering the popular narrative that Lamar Jackson will be the Ravens' starter in no time. The team made it clear they are planning for life after Flacco when they traded back into the first-round of the 2018 draft to select the quarterback out of Louisville at No. 32

Flacco - who is entering his 11th season with the organization - is experiencing a decline in his performance of late, one that can not be put entirely on his shoulders as the team has failed in finding him valuable weapons to throw to. Nonetheless, Flacco's projected 2018 season is very much up in the air and it appears Vegas is betting on the one-time Super Bowl MVP to bounce back. 

However, the Ravens have failed to make the playoffs four of the last five seasons, and if that trend continues into 2018, the rookie could get his shot at flipping the script.

If you're a betting man, it could payoff to bet the over on Jackson. Low risk, seemingly high reward. 

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