-- The Baltimore Ravens locked up another key piece of their franchise, signing Pro Bowl left tackle Jonathan Ogden to a seven-year contract Thursday.
Terms of the deal were not disclosed by the team, and a phone message left for Marvin Demoff, Ogden's agent, was not returned on Thursday.
Ogden, 30, said during training camp that the Ravens and his agent were discussing a new contract that would allow him to finish his career in Baltimore and also give the team some flexibility with the salary cap. The Ravens have several younger players -- such as cornerback Gary Baxter and wide receiver Travis Taylor -- whose contracts are set to expire at the end of the season.
"It's two-fold really," Ogden said. "It's good for me, because it basically guarantees that I'll be here for the end of my career. It's good for the team, because I was able to help give them some space under the cap, so it worked out for everybody."
Earlier this month, the Ravens signed Pro Bowl cornerback Chris McAlister to a seven-year deal worth $37.5 million in base salary plus a reported $17.5 million in bonuses. McAlister, 27, had been designated as the Ravens' franchise player the past two offseasons.
"I think there's been a commitment within the organization over the last two years to retain our players," Baltimore General Manager Ozzie Newsome said on the Ravens' Web site. "Getting J.O. is just another sign of us trying to do that."
"It's a good philosophy to have," Ogden said. "What keeps good players here and what will keep good players here in the future was that, once you're here, they'll take care of you. I'm just glad it's done. I don't have to think about it anymore, not that I was overly concerned about it before, but now, it's off my mind."
Ogden, the All-Met offensive player of the year as a senior at St. Albans, is widely considered to be the best offensive lineman in the NFL, and one of the best to ever play the game.
He has been one of the cornerstones of the franchise ever since he was selected with the fourth overall pick in the 1996 draft -- the first draft pick in Ravens history. He signed a six-year contract prior to the 2000 season that made him the highest-paid offensive lineman in NFL history, and he was set to make $20.1 million over the final three seasons (2004-06).
Ogden continues to receive treatment for a severe hamstring pull, suffered in last week's win over Buffalo. He won't play on Sunday against the undefeated Philadelphia Eagles, and could be sidelined for up to a month. The 6-foot-9, 345-pound Ogden has been remarkably durable during his nine-year career, however. When he sat out of the season opener at Cleveland with a knee injury, it marked the first time he missed a start since the 2000 season.
Ravens Note: The only change to the Ravens' injury report was the addition of rookie kick returner B.J. Sams, who is listed as probable with a back injury. Tight end Todd Heap (ankle), rookie wide receiver Devard Darling (heel), and fullback Ovie Mughelli (hamstring) are questionable. Tackle Ethan Brooks (thumb), tackle Orlando Brown (finger), center Mike Flynn (shoulder) and long snapper Joe Maese (groin) are listed as probable.