The Ravens and running back Ray Rice continue to talk, which is a positive sign. But the sides have not made any progress toward a new deal, a source familiar with the talks told ESPN NFL Insider Adam Schefter.
The deadline for Rice and the Ravens to strike a new deal is 56 days away. If he doesn't sign a contract by July 16, he will play under the $7.7 million franchise tag.
The fact that there's been a lack of progress shows the struggle to find a middle ground. Rice probably believes he deserves a contract closer to the one given to the Titans' Chris Johnson (six years with $30 million guaranteed). In fact, Rice has had more total yards over the past three years than Johnson.
But the Ravens are likely trying to get the money closer to the deals recently signed by Arian Foster (five years, $43.5 million with $20.75 million guaranteed) and LeSean McCoy (five-year, $45 million with $20.76 million guaranteed). Baltimore can argue that is now the market value for running backs.
Until the sides can bridge a $10 million difference in the guaranteed money, there will be no progress made toward a new deal.