At yesterday’s first day of mandatory minicamp, Ravens linebacker Terrell Suggs felt as if he were back at home, running with the NFL’s top-ranked defense on the field and joking with his teammates off it. It was the type of day that makes Suggs excited about this season with the Ravens and beyond. The two-time Pro Bowl linebacker said yesterday that he is interested in signing an extension with the Ravens before he becomes one of the most sought-after free agents at the end of the season. “I’m a Baltimore guy,” Suggs said after his first practice with the Ravens this offseason. “I love playing in this city and for this organization. I really don’t think about free agency. When [the extension] gets done, it gets done.” Last year’s explosion of salaries in free agency could be a tempting proposition for Suggs, who is scheduled to make $5 million in the final year of his contract. As one of the league’s top pass rushers, Suggs likely will command $20 million in guaranteed money in his next contract based on the current market.
One of the factors in the Ravens letting Thomas leave in free agency was so they could pursue a new contract with Suggs. Neither the Ravens nor Suggs would say whether the sides are close to an extension. “We’re still negotiating,” general manager Ozzie Newsome said. This is the month when the Ravens have previously reached extensions with their top players. But Suggs tries not to think when it could happen and prefers to distance himself from negotiations. “I’m a football player and I don’t worry about the business side of it,” he said. “When it happens, it happens. I don’t start my day worrying about my contract. A lot of people would love to be in the NFL. I’m just one of the fortunate ones. Whenever they decide to get it done, they’ll get it done. Ozzie Newsome is very good at that. So, I don’t worry about that.” Suggs, who turns 25 in October, has already established himself as a top-notch pass rusher with 40 sacks in 64 career games.