Lamar Jackson Calls out ‘False Narrative’ After Latest Contract Updates

Ravens Lamar Jackson

Getty Baltimore Ravens quarterback Lamar Jackskon celebrates a touchdown during an October 2021 game.

Baltimore Ravens superstar quarterback Lamar Jackson criticized the “false narrative” surrounding his ongoing contract situation on Twitter on March 30 just a day after Ravens owner Steve Bisciotti offered several updates of his own.

Jackson’s tweet was likely a response to a lengthy segment on NFL Network’s Good Morning Football earlier on March 30 that speculated on Jackson’s thoughts about his contract, even suggesting that the 2019 MVP might be looking to leave Baltimore.

But Jackson hit back, tweeting, “I love my Ravens,” and telling the wide range of NFL analysts and commentators who have weighed in on his contract to stop trying to read his mind.

Jackson is set to enter the 2022 season playing on the fifth-year option from his rookie contract with the potential to hit unrestricted free agency in 2023. The Ravens won’t let that happen, though, as they can place the franchise tag on their star quarterback for the 2024 and 2025 seasons if they can’t agree to a long-term deal with Jackson before then.

But that uncertainty has caused rampant speculation about Jackson’s perspective and approach to his extension, especially with several top quarterbacks getting massive deals in the last year. The 25-year-old has deflected questions about his contract in recent months, telling reporters in January that he was more concerned about making a full recovery from the bone bruise that ended his 2021 season than locking down a long-term extension.

Ravens’ Owner Weighs In

Jackson’s comments come just a day after Ravens owner Steve Bisciotti offered a flurry of updates about the team’s approach to extending Jackson in a meeting with local reporters.

Bisciotti expressed doubt that an extension would get done this offseason “unless [Jackson] has a change of heart,” but made it clear that he intends to keep his star quarterback in Baltimore, per the Ravens’ Clifton Brown.

“We’ll pay him when he’s ready,” said Bisciotti, who acknowledged that “Without a QB you believe in, life [stinks] as an NFL owner and as a fan base.”

Ravens fans worried about the lack of progress on a deal will likely be reassured by Bisciotti’s remarks, which emphasized how much the organization – including players, coaches and the front office – love Jackson and want to keep him in Baltimore.

“You just keep doing you, Lamar, and we’ll make it work,” said Bisciotti, adding “What are you going to do with a guy who wants to be unique? You don’t browbeat him into being a conformist.”

Jackson Could Have Reasons to Wait

Jackson’s wait-and-see approach to his contract isn’t unprecedented, as Dallas Cowboys star quarterback Dak Prescott played on the franchise tag during his fifth NFL season in 2020 before penning a long-term deal the following March.

Bisciotti offered a few potential explanations for the holdup, including Jackson’s desire to bring a Super Bowl to Baltimore before he signs a long-term dealL

The kid is so obsessed with winning a Super Bowl, that I think deep down he doesn’t think he’s worthy. I think he wants that to say, ‘Now I deserve to be on top.’ I don’t think he is turned on by money that much and he knows it’s coming one way or the other.

Of course, leading the Ravens to a Super Bowl while playing on his fifth-year option in 2022 or on the franchise tag in 2023 will give Jackson maximum leverage towards his long-term deal. That could be another reason that the former Louisville Cardinal wants to wait, as Deshaun Watson’s five-year, $230 million deal with the Cleveland Browns – however unethical it may be – offers a new benchmark for NFL quarterback contracts.

Bisciotti acknowledge that Watson’s deal “could have an impact,” but emphasized, “We don’t change because of that.”

But he did admit that the fully-guaranteed nature of Watson’s deal is “something that is groundbreaking and it will make negotiations harder with other,” though he again noted that the Ravens don’t feel forced to take the same route with Jackson.

It’s clear from Bisciotti’s comments that the Ravens are not currently engaged in negotiations with Jackson, but they have every intention of paying him when it’s time to make a deal.

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JR & The Boys
JR & The Boys
9 months ago

Bet on yourself…. You’ll be glad you did.

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