But if you ask him, the new contract wasn't about the money. It was about respect.
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"It was never about earning the money and all that. It was about earning the respect," Flacco said Monday at his press conference announcing the new deal. "Definitely about earning that respect and feeling that respect around here. The fact that we got it done and that they made me [the highest-paid player in the NFL] definitely makes me feel good about how we played and how they feel about me."
It should, because Flacco is a multimillionaire now. Naturally, he has really, really big plans for his newfound wealth.
"Just gonna look at it, I guess," Flacco said when asked what he would do with his money.
That's pretty classic Flacco, who's often been described as incredibly "conservative" (teammate Ray Rice called him just that on Monday) and who, seriously, wasn't in this for the money. If he was, he could've taken big bucks from the Ravens before 2012.
So why didn't he?
"I thought I was worth more," Flacco said. "It's not really about the money, it's about the respect. When you get to a point you're happy with, you say I'm good and let's go take care of the rest of the guys."
Flacco apparently is happy now, having (barely) eclipsed Drew Brees' average annual value of $20 million and having become the highest-paid player in NFL history. He won't be there forever -- someone will surpass his contract numbers pretty soon, I'd imagine -- but for now, Flacco has earned every penny's worth of respect he could ever ask for from the Ravens.
Which, apparently, is all he ever wanted.
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