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Lamar Jackson, Ravens Fail to Reach Contract Agreement Before Deadline

Mike Chiari@@mikechiariFeatured Columnist IVSeptember 9, 2022

Joe Sargent/Getty Images

The Baltimore Ravens announced Friday that they failed to come to terms on a contract extension with quarterback Lamar Jackson before his self-imposed deadline.

In the statement, Ravens general manager Eric DeCosta noted that the organization plans to resume contract talks with Jackson following the 2022 season:

Adam Schefter @AdamSchefter

Lamar Jackson now will play on the last year of his contract. <a href="https://t.co/L0peh2nZdF">pic.twitter.com/L0peh2nZdF</a>

As things stand, Jackson is set to play out the final year on his rookie deal in 2022, and he can become a free agent after the season if no long-term contract is reached and if the Ravens decline to place the franchise tag on him.

While Jackson and the Ravens have been discussing a new contract since at least the end of last season, indications have been that they remain somewhat far apart.

According to ESPN's Jeremy Fowler and Dan Graziano, as well as several other reporters, the main hang-up has been Jackson's desire to land a contract that is fully guaranteed.

Over the course of NFL history, it has been exceedingly rare for players to receive fully guaranteed deals, although it has happened twice recently with quarterbacks.

The Cleveland Browns gave Deshaun Watson a five-year, $230 million contract that is fully guaranteed during the offseason after they acquired him from the Cleveland Browns.

Also, the Green Bay Packers signed veteran signal-caller Aaron Rodgers to a three-year, $150.815 million deal that is entirely guaranteed.

The type of deal Baltimore may be targeting could be closer to the one Kyler Murray received from the Arizona Cardinals in July, which was $230.5 million over five years with $189.5 million in guaranteed money.

Jackson is far more accomplished than Murray at the NFL level, however, having led the Ravens to the playoffs three times in four seasons, along with winning the NFL MVP award in 2019.

He led the NFL in passing touchdowns that season and rushed for over 1,000 yards in both 2019 and 2020, which is a true rarity for an NFL quarterback.

Jackson missed five games due to injury last season, meaning there may be some concern on the Ravens' part regarding Jackson's high-risk running style catching up to him.

When healthy, Jackson is one of the most dynamic players in the NFL, and the Ravens' success hinges primarily on him in 2022.

The upcoming season could be a make-or-break year for Jackson in terms of what kind of contract he gets, but the Ravens have an ace up their sleeve in that they can franchise him for 2023.

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