North Notes: Ravens, Barnidge, Daniels, Packers

The five-year, $37.5MM contract the Ravens gave to left tackle Eugene Monroe in 2014 looks like an obvious mistake now, but it was applauded at the time, writes Jeff Zrebiec of the Baltimore Sun. After missing just three games due to injury in his first four seasons, Monroe hasn’t been able to stay on the field during the last two years, and now the team will face a tough offseason decision.

While cutting Monroe in the offseason is one option, the Ravens wouldn’t clear much cap room by doing so, since the lineman’s deal still includes $6.6MM in dead money. It seems to me that a more logical solution would be to rework Monroe’s deal to convert a chunk of his $6.5MM salary for 2016 into per-game roster bonuses. That would allow Monroe to keep his spot on the roster and give him an opportunity to earn his full salary, while also alleviating the risk for the Ravens — if the veteran tackle gets hurt again, Baltimore won’t be on the hook for his entire salary.

As we wait to see what the Ravens decide on Monroe, let’s round up some other items from around the AFC North, including a couple more out of Baltimore….

  • Within the above-linked piece, Zrebiec also notes that if Kelechi Osemele holds up well at left tackle over the final three games of the season, it could change the lineman’s outlook for free agency. The Ravens likely can’t afford to sign another guard to a lucrative contract after extending Marshal Yanda, but if Osemele can play left tackle, that’s a position the team would be willing to spend on — of course, so would many other rival clubs.
  • Before the Ravens decided to sign Ryan Mallett, the quarterback assured the team that he has received professional help for personal issues that led to his ouster in Houston, a league source tells Ed Werder of Having been signed for the 2016 season, Mallett could serve as Joe Flacco‘s backup next year if the Ravens like what they see from him.
  • Adam Caplan of (Twitter links) passes along a few more details on Gary Barnidge‘s new contract with the Browns, reporting that the three-year, $12.3MM pact features $5.73MM in guaranteed money, though not all of that money is fully guaranteed yet. Barnidge’s $1.5MM salary for 2016 becomes fully guaranteed in March.
  • Speaking of contract details, Joel Corry of (Twitter links) has a few for Packers defensive lineman Mike Daniels, providing the year-by-year cap breakdown for Daniels’ extension. Daniels will count against the cap for $7.4MM in 2016, with his hits jumping to the $10-11MM range for the final three years of the deal.
  • Now that the Packers have extended Daniels, who’s next in line for a new contract in Green Bay? Rob Demovksy of takes a closer look at some possibilities.
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