The Baltimore Ravens and running back Ray Rice reached an agreement on a long term deal just before today’s (7/16) 4 pm deadline when franchise tags became no longer revocable. The deal is a 5 year contract worth up to $40 million, with $17 million being paid this season. The 25 year old Rice is coming off his best season as a pro, setting career highs in rushing yards (1,364), rushing touchdowns (12), receiving yards (704), and touchdown receptions (3) in route to being named to his second consecutive pro bowl. Rice also lead the NFL in yards from scrimmage (2068) and was undoubtedly the focal point of a Raven’s offense that may have been the best in franchise history, averaging just under 24 points per game (12th in NFL). With Rice’s deal out of the way the Ravens can now focus their attention on getting a long term deal worked out with quarterback Joe Flacco, who’s entering the final year of his rookie deal. The Ravens, Ray Rice, and Raven’s fans everywhere can now breathe a sigh of relief and start getting excited about football season.