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Ravens QB Lamar Jackson to Receive Franchise Tag?

Raven Country on FanNation logo Raven Country on FanNation 2/1/2023 Timm Hamm
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The Baltimore Ravens' situation is one where teams historically have had to tread very lightly, and this is by far the biggest dramatic storyline in the NFL this offseason.

Every NFL offseason comes with a little bit of drama. But the Baltimore Ravens are looking at an offseason of drama not seen by the team in quite some time.

Quarterback and face of the franchise Lamar Jackson begins this offseason without a contract. While fans ponder and speculate about his future with the team, there are options available for the Ravens to keep him even without a long-term deal in place.

NFL Network's Ian Rapoport appeared on The Pat McAfee Show on Tuesday and presented his thoughts on the situation. 

Rapoport said he has a "sense" that the Ravens will place the exclusive franchise tag on the fifth-year quarterback. And while that would ultimately cost the team more, it would prevent other teams from having the ability to negotiate their own deal with Jackson.

Under a non-exclusive franchise tag, Jackson could strike a deal with another club, and the Ravens would have an opportunity to match it. Under that scenario, if Jackson leaves the Ravens, the organization would receive two first-round draft picks as compensation.

Sound good?

Consider if Baltimore tags Jackson and then seeks a trade, they would most likely get much more in return.

This is a situation where teams historically have had to tread very lightly, and this is by far the biggest dramatic storyline in the league this offseason.

Jackson expanded the drama by posting a cryptic message on Instagram after the Ravens lost to the Bengals in the playoffs:

There is also the matter of Jackson's health, as he missed the final five regular-season games with a knee injury. He also sat out the team's playoff matchup against the Bengals in the Wild Card round.

Jackson updated everyone on Jan. 12 by revealing that his grade 2 PCL strain was "borderline" grade 3 with swelling. That's why he missed the Ravens' matchup with Cincinnati.

It's true, that skeptics will point out that the team has just one playoff win since Jackson joined the team in the 2018 NFL Draft, but they ignore the league MVP and two Pro Bowl honors.

Ultimately it's up to Eric DeCosta and the team if they want to keep a blank check for Jackson's services. But the first thing they should ask when considering that is, "who's available that's better?"

And that should be easy to answer.

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