Re-signing Ngata at the top of Ravens' to-do list

He might be an unrestricted free agent, but Ravens defensive tackle Haloti Ngata said this week that he "(doesn't) want to go anywhere else".

The feeling is mutual.

General Manager Ozzie Newsome said yesterday that re-signing Ngata to a long-term contract is at the top of the Ravens' to-do list this offseason.

That process will be made more difficult because of the possibility of a work stoppage this offseason, but those in the Ravens' front office will continue to plug away and hope to get a deal done with the two-time Pro Bowl defensive tackle at some point.

"Haloti is a priority," Newsome said. "There are some issues that we have going forward based on an uncapped year with the potential of going to a capped year that could create some problems in getting a deal done before a work stoppage. But, I don't think - other than maybe preparing for the draft - there is any other thing that has the most importance to me than to bring a player (back) like Haloti - get him under contract."

Newsome pointed out that traditionally, the Ravens have been able to work out long-term deals with their top draft picks who have played well under their first contract.

"When you go to Ray (Lewis) to Jonathan (Ogden) to Ed (Reed)," Newsome said, "we've always demonstrated our abilities that players that perform well get the opportunity to play here for a long time."

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