The Baltimore Ravens may be forced to place the franchise tag on free agent running back Ray Rice, which could pay the Pro Bowler close to $7.7 million guaranteed for the season. It might be tough for the two sides to come to a long term deal however, according to a report by Peter King of Sports Illustrated.
I'm hearing Rice wants an Adrian Peterson-type of contract; Peterson signed a seven-year deal worth up to $100 million last September, with the major provision that he'll make $40 million in the first three years. I don't see the Ravens doing that for Rice.
Rice has been playing on his rookie contract, making him a bargain for the Ravens the past three seasons. It's unlikely the Ravens will pay Rice that kind of money, so it's looking even more likely that Rice will be hit with the franchise tag. Another contract that could be used as a basis for Rice's deal could be that of Tennessee Titans RB Chris Johnson. Johnson signed a six-year $55 million contract with $30 million guaranteed with a $20 million signing bonus last season.
For more analysis of Rice's situation, be sure to check out Ravens blog Baltimore Beatdown.