The weekend isn’t without football discussion on the Baltimore Ravens’ front as offensive lineman Orlando Brown Jr. posted a tweet stating he is a LEFT tackle.
I’m a LEFT Tackle.— Orlando Brown Jr. (@ZEUS__78) January 29, 2021
This leaves two trains of thought.
Brown Jr. is not wanting to take right tackle money. You can’t fault him for it, either, as left tackles do make more money than the opposite bookend. According to overthecap.com, the average of the top five left tackles AAV (average annual value) is at $19.55 million. The same metric is down five million, at only $14.5 million. Over the course of a four year deal, that’s a $20 million difference.
Not to be without further clarity, the highest paid deal for left tackle is David Bakhtiari at $23 million AAV. At right tackle it is $18 million AAV (Lane Johnson). Teammate Ronnie Stanley just signed an extension, placing him third-highest for left tackles at $19.75 million.
With all these numbers being floated about, the overall sentiment is Zeus Jr. wants to be paid his rightful money, especially after he plummeted from a first-round lock to a third-round selection after a troublesome combine. For Brown Jr.’s full rookie deal, he’s only slated to earn $3.49 million. His fall in the draft was a significant financial loss. Compare that with Ronnie Stanley, who was selected No. 6 overall whose rookie contract was a
Meanwhile, Stanley earned around $20 million for his four-year, $20.4 million deal. Zeus Jr. is likely wanting to recoup the money he lost, as well as be paid his market value as a left tackle.
Position of Play in 2021
This is the second train of thought. Brown Jr. wants to play left tackle in 2021 and places the team (and his teammate, Stanley) in an awkward spot entering next season. After a successful season of blocking Lamar Jackson’s blindside after Stanley’s season-ending injury, maybe he wants to keep blocking on that side?
As of now, CBS Sports’ Jason La Canfora has reported Brown Jr. is “only interested in playing LT.”
Based on Orlando Brown's Tweet, the Ravens top $ deal with LT Ronnie Stanley and what I am hearing from sources, Brown is stuck in, is only interested in playing LT and his days in BAL likely numbered. Trade may be only solution— Jason La Canfora (@JasonLaCanfora) January 29, 2021
If this is the case, the Ravens will need quite a haul to part ways with Brown Jr. He’s been an instrumental piece to the Ravens’ offensive success and has fully developed under their tutelage. If considered, Brown Jr.’s value stands comparable (yet lower than) the blockbuster Laremy Tunsil trade between the Miami Dolphins and Houston Texans.
I get Brown Jr. wanting his money. I support it, too. He’s a great player and been a great teammate. He lost a bunch of money due to his draft stock plummeting and wanting to recoup that is all reasonable by my standards.
I do wonder how the Ravens’ brass will think of this tweet. Is this a message that he won’t play any other position, or that he won’t accept right tackle money? Is he really only interested in blocking the blindside in 2021 and it’s either he plays left tackle in Baltimore or he plays it somewhere else by requesting a trade?
There’s a lot of questions behind this five-word tweet. Now, it’s only time until we see whether this ends up being a contract dispute or something more.