Lamar Jackson is available for any team to try to get, but it will cost a potential NFL team more than just money to acquire the quarterback, since he is a restricted free agent.
The Carolina Panthers are among the teams that could really use a quarterback, especially a one-off MVP like Jackson. Carolina traded for the No. 1 overall pick in the draft, and a quarterback could be in the offing. Panthers general manager Scott Fitterer understands Jackson’s greatness and the price.
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«Like everything, you always have a conversation,» Fitterer said on Monday, via Pro Football Talk. «But we were looking at… He’s a great option, a really expensive option. But we’re focused on more draft picks right now.»
Jackson received the non-exclusive franchise tag from the Ravens, which allows him to speak to other teams who are interested in his services. Baltimore has the option to match any offer sheet Jackson wants to sign, or they could receive two first-round picks in the NFL Draft.
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Ravens general manager Eric DeCosta issued a statement after the franchise tag deadline, noting the team remains encouraged that a deal can be done with Jackson.
«Since we have not yet reached a long-term agreement with Lamar Jackson, we will use the franchise tag,» DeCosta said in a statement. «There have been many instances throughout the league and in Baltimore where a player has been designated with the franchise tag and signed a long-term contract that same year. We will continue to negotiate in good faith with Lamar, and we are hopeful that we can to reach 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.»
The Ravens have until July 17 to extend Jackson, or his $32 million price tag will be set for next season. That is if another team doesn’t swoop in and try to sign him.
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Jackson was injured and cost him the remaining five games in the 2021 and 2022 seasons each. In 2022, he had 2,242 passing yards and 17 touchdown passes. He also rushed for 764 rushing yards and three touchdowns.