In a move that surprised some in the NFL, the Baltimore Ravens have placed the non-exclusive franchise tag on quarterback Lamar Jackson.
Ravens sent notice to the NFLPA that they placed the $32.41 million non-exclusive franchise tag on QB Lamar Jackson. He now is allowed to negotiate with other teams, but Ravens have right to match any offer sheet he signs or take two first-round picks in return for him. pic.twitter.com/HNdg6231tC
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) March 7, 2023
This means that Jackson will be a Raven for at least one more season. It also means that any other team that wants to sign him would have to give up two first-round draft picks as compensation. The Ravens can match any deal thrown his way, however.
Jackson’s Career Path
Jackson has been a star for the Ravens since he was drafted in 2018 out of Louisville University. He has quickly established himself as one of the best quarterbacks in the league. In 2019, he won the NFL MVP award after throwing for 3,127 yards and 36 touchdowns, while also rushing for 1,206 yards and seven touchdowns. He followed that up with another strong season in 2020, throwing for 2,757 yards and 26 touchdowns, and rushing for 1,005 yards and seven touchdowns.
Despite Jackson’s impressive play, there had been some speculation that the Ravens might choose not to sign him to a long-term contract extension this offseason. This was due in part to concerns about Jackson’s ability to consistently throw the ball at a high level, as well as the fact that his style of play puts him at risk for injury.
By placing the non-exclusive franchise tag on Jackson, the Ravens have essentially bought themselves more time to negotiate a long-term deal with him. Jackson can also talk to other teams to try and get the money he well deserves.
The franchise tag carries a hefty price tag,especially for a quarterback. The Ravens will need to be strategic in their other offseason moves to ensure that they can afford to keep their other key players.
The Ravens cannot afford losing Lamar Jackson at quarterback. With the Bengals already running the division, the Browns and Steelers both have bright futures with their quarterbacks as well.
The Ravens are not seen as favorites to win the AFC North according to Maryland sportsbooks. If Jackson leaves there will be favored even less. The favorite to land Lamar Jackson according to Georgia sportsbooks is the Atlanta Falcons.