The Ravens and Justin Tucker reached a long-term deal. The Russell Street Report staff reacts to the news. Glad you’re sticking around, Tuck!
Ravens and Justin Tucker agree on 4-year, $16.8 million deal that includes $10.8 million guaranteed, per source.
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) July 15, 2016
Glad to see the Ravens and Justin Tucker got the deal done with time to spare before the 4 p.m. deadline. If the reported terms are indeed correct (4-year, $16.8 million with $10.8 million guaranteed), Tucker should be very happy as should the Ravens with a cap friendly deal for the second-most accurate kicker in NFL history. Tucker now needs to show the organization made the right choice after a career-low in field goal percentage in 2015.
Having a kicker who can consistently put points on the board when called on is an underrated weapon in a league with such small margin for victory. Tucker is accurate, a threat from deep, comes up big in huge moments, and is a bright young kid who adds personality to the locker room. Who knows how many dollars, if any, Tucker’s agent’s comments from yesterday earned his client, but “un-tagging” Tucker will be in everybody’s favor. His 4-year total comes in just under Stephen Gostkowski’s, but sets the mark for the most-ever guaranteed money for a kicker. Happy for the guy, very glad he’s a Raven.
Despite the empty & ludicrous threats by Tucker’s agent Ron Roche (he took advice from Joe Linta, apparently), I was confident this deal would get done today. And a solid deal it is for both parties: Tucker is paid like a top kicker in the NFL, and the Ravens keep a top kicker in the NFL.
Viva la Wolfpack!
It’s easy to say “he’s just a kicker,” but ask fans of teams that are trying out new kickers in Week 10 every other season how nice it would be to have a guy like Tucker. The Ravens have more cap room than they’re used to having at this point in the year, so I’m interested to see if they front-load the salary cap hit a bit to lessen the numbers down the line. Tucker is a professional who takes pride in what he does, so I see no reason for him to not remain as one of the best in the game at what he does through this contract and onto the next one.
Above all it’s good news that the Ravens got this deal done with Tucker. I was in Foxborough in 2011 and I’m still trying to erase the stench of the stale beer spilling on me as Patriots fans high-fived and celebrated around me. With that said, assuming Adam Schefter’s report was accurate, this was poorly handled on both ends.
Why would the Ravens lower their offer? That’s insulting to Tucker and makes absolutely no sense. After missing a trip to the Super Bowl in 2011 because your kicker shanked a chip shot why cause a rift over roughly a million bucks?
From Tucker’s side the ultimatum play was lame. I understand his frustration, and after what happened to Shaun Suisham last year in a preseason game it proves even kickers are susceptible to career threatening injuries. Tucker wants some security, and he’s earned it. But it reeks of arrogance. Some people like Tucker’s dances after kicks, they enjoy the flare, I personally don’t. I’m probably in the minority but Tucker got a little less likable in the last 24 hours.
There was no reason for this deal to not get done, and thankfully it did. Tucker’s agents threat was as hollow as they come and thankfully the Ravens ignored him. The deal is pretty much right where it should be, and while I don’t expect any issues with Tucker, a 4-year deal for a PK (they gave 5 years to Cundiff IIRC) is probably a good number. If he performs well, he’s got a chance at another top of the market deal at a pretty young age – especially for a PK.
Will be interested in seeing the final details of the deal. Since they, for once, aren’t in the need for Cap space, I’d like to see them keep the 2016 Cap number more in line with the Tag number and not go for maximum Cap relief like they are usually forced to do. If his 2016 Cap number is higher that would lessen the payout in the future years.
I’m glad to see this got done. Tucker, even with an average season last year, is one of the best in the league. He deserves to be paid as such. The value of his reliability shouldn’t be understated, and the Ravens can manage the high cap dollar for such a commodity.
As for the ridiculous posturing of the past 24 hours out of Tucker’s camp, maybe it worked. Or maybe the deadline wielded its immense power once again, especially for players under the franchise tag.
We’ll add more knee-jerk reactions as they roll in, so check back!