The dark cloud of uncertainty that had been hanging over the Baltimore Ravens franchise is now lifting.
Quarterback Lamar Jackson has come to terms with the organization on a five-year deal worth $260 million that will keep him in Baltimore for the foreseeable future.
This came just weeks after the team used its non-exclusive franchise tag on him, which allowed him to freely negotiate a new contract with a team of his choice.
NFL insider Josina Anderson says that $185 million of the $260 million in Jackson’s new contract will be guaranteed.
League source just added that the total "guaranteed" portion on Lamar Jackson's deal is $185M. https://t.co/L8FHaAxEIU
— JosinaAnderson (@JosinaAnderson) April 27, 2023
Jackson had been wanting a new contract for many months, and it had generally been believed that he wanted a deal similar to the one Deshaun Watson got from the Cleveland Browns last year, one that will pay him a fully guaranteed $230 million.
It’s a hefty price to pay for a player in Jackson whose production as a passer has declined over the last few years.
In addition, he has missed five games apiece the last two seasons due to injury, and given that he’s a dual-threat quarterback, there is always an ambient concern about his durability.
Jackson was named the NFL’s regular season MVP in 2019 for posting 3,127 passing yards, a league-high 36 touchdowns, 1,206 rushing yards, and seven rushing touchdowns.
But his touchdown rate has fallen from 9.0 percent that season to 5.2 percent in 2022.
Now the task for the Ravens will be to surround Jackson will playmakers, particularly at the wide receiver position, where they didn’t have a single player reach 500 receiving yards last season.NEXT: Former NFL Star Believes Ravens Could Land DeAndre Hopkins