NFL Rumors: Lamar Jackson Unlikely to Be Pursued by Raiders, Dolphins, Panthers, More

NFL Rumors: Lamar Jackson Unlikely to Be Pursued by Raiders, Dolphins, Panthers, More
Scott Polacek@@ScottPolacekTwitter LogoFeatured Columnist IVMarch 7, 2023

BALTIMORE, MARYLAND - DECEMBER 04: Quarterback Lamar Jackson #8 of the Baltimore Ravens drops back to pass against the Denver Broncos at M&T Bank Stadium on December 04, 2022 in Baltimore, Maryland. (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images)

Rob Carr/Getty Images

Lamar Jackson is available for the right price, but multiple NFL teams reportedly aren’t expected to pursue the quarterback.

The Baltimore Ravens placed the non-exclusive franchise tag on Jackson ahead of Tuesday’s 4 p.m. ET deadline, which means other teams can negotiate an offer sheet with him. Baltimore would then have the right to match any such deal or let him go and accept two first-round picks in return from the team that signed him.

“There have been many instances across the league and in Baltimore when a player has been designated with the franchise tag and signed a long-term deal that same year,” Ravens general manager Eric DeCosta said in a statement.

“We will continue to negotiate in good faith with Lamar, and we are hopeful that we can strike a long-term deal that is fair to both Lamar and the Ravens. Our ultimate goal is to build a championship team with Lamar Jackson leading the way for many years to come.”

Joe Person of The Athletic reported the Carolina Panthers “are not expected to be in the Jackson market,” while ESPN’s Dianna Russini noted the Atlanta Falcons will not be either.

Elsewhere, Kimberley A. Martin of ESPN reported the Washington Commanders “are not likely to pursue” him either.

They aren’t the only teams apparently out on him, as ESPN’s Jeff Darlington reported the Miami Dolphins aren’t interested. According to Vincent Bonsignore of the Las Vegas Review-Journal, the Las Vegas Raiders are “unlikely” to pursue the quarterback as well.

However, Russini provided additional context:

Dianna Russini @diannaESPN

Team Source: The Las Vegas Raiders haven’t eliminated any QB options — including Lamar Jackson.

It should be noted there may be some hesitancy from teams to part ways with multiple first-round draft picks in addition to the massive contract Jackson will likely command. While he is one of the best signal-callers in the league, that type of financial and draft-capital commitment would make building a contender around him all the more difficult.

Drafting a potential franchise quarterback on a rookie deal would give teams more financial flexibility to improve other positions, although that comes with the risk of the first-year player not living up to expectations.

Jackson’s resume includes the 2019 MVP and two Pro Bowl selections.

He is a dynamic runner who gives offenses different options because of that skill set but also led the NFL with 36 touchdown throws during his MVP campaign. It is fair to wonder about his health after he missed five games in 2022 with a risky playing style, but he has consistently proven he can take over games when he is on the field.

Yet Carolina, Washington and Miami will apparently look for more cost-friendly options at quarterback, at least this early in the offseason.

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