Baltimore Ravens star quarterback Lamar Jackson returned to the facility for mandatory minicamp this week, giving fans a bit of relief with his contract situation weighing heavily on everyone’s minds. The former NFL MVP is entering the final year of his rookie deal, and there reportedly hasn’t been much movement in extension talks. However, Jackson revealed Thursday that he has had contract talks with the Ravens this week, per Pro Football Talk.
Jackson was also asked straight-up if he expects to play in Baltimore for the rest of his career. He didn’t bat an eye in his response.
“I expect so. Yes I do,” Jackson responded.
Something that could either be holding up, or hold up a Jackson extension in the near future is the contract a rival QB signed earlier this offseason. The Cleveland Browns won the Deshaun Watson sweepstakes, and handed the embattled signal-caller a fully-guaranteed, five-year, $230 million dollar deal. While Watson is the second highest-paid QB in terms of AAV, per Over The Cap, the $230 million total guaranteed broke a record.
When Jackson was asked how much Watson’s deal could affect his own, he said not at all.
“Nothing at all. I’m a man of my own. I don’t worry about what those guys did,” Jackson said, via ESPN.
According to Spotrac’s calculated market value, Jackson could be in line to sign a five-year, $220,490,205 deal. That hypothetical AAV of $44 million would rank fourth among quarterbacks behind Patrick Mahomes, Watson and Aaron Rodgers. Jackson is coming off of the toughest campaign of his career, as he missed a career-high five games due to an ankle injury. Still, he’s already proven he’s a franchise quarterback, as the Ravens have made the playoffs in each campaign where he’s played at least 15 games.