After two days of being aggressively recruited by the
In what remains a fluid situation with the two sides still haggling over money and not so far off financially that doing a deal would be unrealistic, the former
Reed is seeking a contract ranging from $6 million to $7 million per year, and the Texans' proposal is at roughly a $5 million annual average, according to league sources with knowledge of the situation.
Talks aren't expected to advance again until the NFL owners meetings that start Monday in Arizona. Reed was paid $7.2 million last season in the final year of his
One source said that Reed's agent, David Dunn, is shopping the Texans' offer around the NFL.
The Ravens have kept tabs on the situation by remaining in contact with Reed's representatives. Although the
The Ravens didn't stand pat Friday as Reed was in Houston. They reached an agreement in principle with former
Spears, 30, is slated to take a physical and sign his contract within the next three days.
As for Reed, his six-year, $44.5 million contract expired after the season and he became an unrestricted free agent.
Reed was impressed with the Texans' sales pitch and felt comfortable with the
And Reed delivered that sentiment via his verified Twitter account while heading to the airport, writing: "Houston is a good city, great time with everyone!"
Reed was ferried to Houston with general manager Rick Smith on Texans owner Bob McNair's private jet, dining Thursday night with coaches and former University of Miami teammates: wide receiver
Johnson told Houston reporters, including the
"Ed said, 'Get me to Houston,' " Johnson said. "I think we're going to get it done. Everything is positive. He's a good friend and a great player. He's a great leader and a ball hawk. I'd love to have him be part of our organization."
Despite an aggressive push to land Reed, it didn't result in the quick deal that many expected.
Whether Reed, who intercepted four passes last season and picked off
The 49ers, whose head coach,
For now, the Texans are the focus for the Reed camp.
And the Ravens are intent on finding bargains that fit into their budget.
That includes continuing to hold dialogue with former
Former Ravens strong safety
Spears is a 2005 Cowboys first-round draft pick who was selected 20th overall out of LSU.
He was cut this year after signing a five-year, $19.2 million contract in 2011.
Spears, 30, has 226 career tackles and 10 sacks with three forced fumbles. Last season, he had 25 tackles and a sack in six starts.
A natural 3-4 defensive end at 6-foot-4, 315 pounds, Spears was released after the Cowboys hired defensive coordinator Monte Kiffin and changed their primary base defense to a 4-3 front.
The move reunites Spears and Canty after both entered the NFL with the Cowboys eight years ago.
Ravens general manager
“The base of a good defense is to be good along the defensive line,” Newsome said in a statement. "We didn’t play to our standards last season, partly because of injury. With the expected better health of players like
"Spears, like Canty, can play multiple positions along the line. He brings a lot of snaps and big game experience to us. We like the way Marcus plays. He will fit in with the Ravens way of playing."
Meanwhile, tight end
Because Pitta wasn't assigned the first-round tender of $2.879 million, the Ravens are slightly vulnerable should another team submit an offer sheet. They own the right of first refusal to match any offer sheet. If they didn't opt to match, and no one has submitted an offer at this time, they would be compensated with a second-round draft pick.
The restricted free agent market is notoriously dead, but NFL teams do have a high opinion of Pitta.
It's unclear if the interest of teams will translate into any action regarding Pitta, though.
The 49ers are another team believed to be interested in addressing the tight end position.
No offer sheet has been submitted for Pitta, though.
Pitta is a young player the Ravens would ideally like to sign to a long-term deal in the future.
After Boldin declined a $2 million reduction of his $6 million base salary, the Ravens traded him to the 49ers in exchange for a sixth-round draft pick