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Lamar Jackson Out? QB, Ravens Still Toiling Over Contract Specifics



Ben Roethlisberger AFC North Ravens QB Lamar Jackson Steelers

INDIANAPOLIS — The Baltimore Ravens want to keep Lamar Jackson, and Lamar Jackson wants to remain a Baltimore Raven, but to this point, the two sides seem to be too far apart to reach a deal.

On Wednesday, Ravens general manager Eric DeCosta took to the podium to discuss what was going with Jackson. There is an open line of communication between the two as they text back and forth with one another. However, Jackson represents himself, and while they are optimistic to reach a long-term deal with Jackson before the franchise tag deadline, there is the possibility that it does not happen.

“We both understand the urgency of the situation and it’s good dialogue,” DeCosta said. “I’m optimistic on the situation as I’ve always been. We’ll see where it goes.”

DeCosta and the Ravens do not want to just let Jackson go. Instead, they understand that the value of having a franchise quarterback is top-tier in the modern-day NFL. So, with that in mind, there are plans that the Ravens have laid out, but it would be hard to see Jackson leave.

“You can’t win in this league without a strong quarterback,” DeCosta said. “We want Lamar here. We want him back. Living in a world without a quarterback is a bad world to live in.”

Still, DeCosta and Baltimore have more than one contingency plan. That includes a possible franchise, though the Ravens have not decided which tag, the exclusive or non-exclusive tag that they would use. Of course, in an ideal world, the two sides would meet on a contract and Lamar Jackson would be a Raven. However, the Ravens are moving forward preparing for all scenarios. In addition, DeCosta was not bothered by the fact that Jackson did not attend Baltimore’s playoff game.

It seems this relationship is cordial. Though, DeCosta admitted that the negotiation itself took a toll on him and it was not easy. With that in mind and the tag deadline just a few days away, it seems the franchise tag and play scenario could be very likely for Jackson and the Ravens.

“Yeah, listen this is a tough negotiation,” DeCosta said. “You look at it and there are certain dynamics here that make it more difficult and certainly more different. But Lamar and I we text, and there’s an open line of communication. So, I’ll reiterate that we’re optimistic.”

Jackson and the Ravens mutually seem to want the deal to happen. However, the tag deadline is only in six days on March 7th. If he is not tagged then, Jackson could hit the open market to test what his worth would be like, but it seems unlikely the Ravens would allow that to happen.

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