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Ravens, Lamar Jackson Fail to Reach Long-Term Deal before Season



Baltimore Ravens QB Lamar Jackson vs Steelers OLB T.J. Watt

The Baltimore Ravens and star quarterback Lamar Jackson did not reach a long-term deal before Friday’s deadline, general manager Eric DeCosta announced. Jackson will now make $23.1 million this season and is expected to receive an exclusive franchise tag after this year. The exclusive franchise tag number is estimated at around $45 million fully guaranteed for 2023.

“Despite best efforts on both sides, we were unable to reach a contract extension with Lamar Jackson,” DeCosta said in a statement. “We greatly appreciate how he has handled this process and we are excited about our team with Lamar leading the way. We will continue to work towards a long-term contract after this season, but for now we are looking forward to a successful 2022 campaign.”

Deshaun Watson’s $230 million guaranteed contract from the Cleveland Browns surely made things more complex for the Ravens and Jackson to reach an agreement on a long-term deal, as it’s only wise for Jackson to push for a similar deal. Jackson recently spoke with at least one agent, but has no plans to hire one.

Jackson unanimously won the league MVP in 2019, setting an NFL single-season rushing record for quarterbacks (1,206) and leading a lethal Baltimore rushing attack that racked up more yards on the ground (3,296) than any in NFL history. Jackson was also efficient through the air, completing 265 of 401 passes (66.1%) for 3,127 yards, 36 touchdowns, nine interceptions, and a quarterback rating of 113.3.

Jackson led the Ravens to a 14-2 record in 2019, but they got upset by the Tennessee Titans in the divisional round. Playoff success has been an issue for Jackson, as he’s 1-3 in the postseason. His numbers have also regressed in the last two years since his MVP campaign, posting touchdown-interception ratios of 26-9 in 2020 and 16-13 in 2021. Jackson still rushed over 1,000 yards in 2020 and recorded 767 yards on the ground in just 12 games in 2021.

Jackson hasn’t fared well against the Steelers in his career, as he has a 1-2 record as a starter, with a completion percentage of 59.57, 634 passing yards, with four touchdown passes and six interceptions.

Jackson gets ridiculed for his passing abilities, but his career numbers are pretty stellar, completing 64.1 of his passes for 9,967 yards with 84 touchdowns and 31 interceptions, and a quarterback rating of 98.1.