Ravens open the door for league to make their best offer for Lamar Jackson

The Baltimore Ravens officially placed their non-exclusive franchise tag on Lamar Jackson on Tuesday.

On Tuesday, the Baltimore Ravens put the franchise’s non-exclusive tag on Lamar Jackson in one of the franchise’s boldest moves in recent history.

Even bolder is that the Ravens chose to use the non-exclusive franchise tag, rather than the exclusive franchise tag on Jackson, signifying that Baltimore is open to offloading a quarterback this season.

The non-exclusive tag deal with the Ravens is worth $32.4 million and allows Jackson to negotiate with other teams. If Jackson signs a deal with another team, the Ravens can match the deal or let Jackson leave twice in the first round.

In other words, the Lamar Jackson saga isn’t over yet and he could be dragged out for the remainder of the season and into the 2023 season. Jackson could officially start negotiating with other teams on March 15; If the Ravens want to continue working on an extension, they have until July 17 to do so.

After July 17, Jackson could delay signing the franchise tender until the Tuesday after Week 10 of the regular season. Any team can also offer him a new deal up to that point.

The Ravens have served notice to the NFLPA that they have placed a non-exclusive $32.41 million franchise tag on QB Lamar Jackson. He is now allowed to negotiate with other teams, but the Ravens are entitled to match any offer sheet he signs or to two first-round picks in exchange for him.

— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) March 7, 2023

Lamar Jackson’s future is left wide open after the Ravens used a non-exclusive franchise tag on him

Despite the non-exclusive tag mess, Baltimore released a statement indicating that the team still wants to keep Jackson for 2023 and beyond. The franchise has stated that it still hopes to strike a “fair” long-term deal with Jackson, and has also said that the ultimate goal is to “build a championship team” that includes Jackson below center.

It marks the first time in franchise history that the Ravens have used the franchise tag on a quarterback, and it comes after months of turmoil during which Baltimore and Jackson were unable to agree to a long-term extension.

Jackson, who doesn’t have an agent, has been seeking a guaranteed deal just like former Cleveland Browns Deshaun Watson’s contract. The Crows didn’t want to pay Jackson that much money and would probably assume nobody else does either.

Any potential claimant would have to fork out the $250 million deal (with $133 million guaranteed) the Ravens offered Jackson last year, not to mention fork over two first-rounders to Baltimore as well.

It appears one of the rumored favorites, the Atlanta Falcons, has already dropped out of the race. It is likely that Jackson will attract more suitors in the coming months because his contract saga is far from over.

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