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Rice: Flacco and I ‘Will be Ravens Next Year’

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(Credits: Gene Sweeney Jr/Baltimore Sun/MCT)

As the Baltimore Ravens enter an off-season certain to be marked by change to the 53-man roster, one thing is for sure, according to running back Ray Rice:

Both he and quarterback Joe Flacco will play for the Ravens in 2012.

“It will be an interesting off-season, but one thing I can guarantee you is Ray Rice and Joe Flacco will be Baltimore Ravens next year,” Rice said during an interview on Pro Football Talk Live, via CSNBaltimore.com.

While the guarantee was grave–there is little doubt about where the two will play–at least in the short team.

Flacco has one year remaining on his five-year rookie deal he signed after the Ravens drafted him in the first-round of the 2008 draft, so while he’s frequently expressed interest in signing a long term deal, he will still be under contract for next season.

As for Rice, even though his contract is up, allowing him to become an unrestricted free agent, the Ravens can retain his services for another year by slapping the franchise-tag on him. He would sign a one-year deal and earn the average of the top five salaries in the league at running back.

Clearly, the Ravens need to sign both Rice and Flacco to long-term contracts to keep them in place for the foreseeable future, but the uniform the players will wear for at least the 2012 season is not in question.