Flacco, Ravens continue negotiations

Posted by ESPN.com's James Walker

The Baltimore Ravens and the representation for rookie first-rounder Joe Flacco are expected to meet again next week in an effort to work out a five-year contract.

Flacco clearly understands the importance of being on time for training camp when the Ravens report July 21. The two sides opened negotiations May 12 and have met four times total. The two sides have taken steps forward with each meeting.

"We're progressing," Flacco's agent Joe Linta said Tuesday. "Hopefully we can continue to make progress as we aim to get him into camp on time."

The Ravens and Flacco want to ensure the rookie gets a fair chance to win the starting job in Baltimore. He will compete with Kyle Boller and Troy Smith in a three-way quarterback race.

Last year a pair of first-round quarterbacks -- JaMarcus Russell of the Oakland Raiders and the Cleveland Browns' Brady Quinn -- had lengthy holdouts that affected their rookie seasons. Both players missed part or all of training camp and were trying to play catch up their entire first season.