On Tuesday, Baltimore Ravens quarterback Lamar Jackson, who has been in heated discussions for years with the team over a contract extension, quote-tweeted Baltimore Beatdown, denying an earlier report he turned down a $200 million guaranteed deal back in September.
https://t.co/AKf0w3WUXS pic.twitter.com/NigoviFOY6— Lamar Jackson (@Lj_era8) March 14, 2023
He followed up, assumedly admitting he turned down a three-year, $133 million guaranteed deal, which was similar to what ESPN’s Adam Schefter reported, which was what Baltimore Beatdown cited.
As Schefter has stated, he and ESPN’s Chris Mortensen reported on this back in September.
Here was the original tweet thread from Mortensen.
Sources: Lamar Jackson rejected a Ravens' 6-yr contract offer with $133 million fully guaranteed at signing, which is more than Russell Wilson ($124 million) and Kyler Murray ($103.3 million) but well short of the $230 million fully guaranteed deal that Deshaun Watson got.— Chris Mortensen (@mortreport) September 11, 2022
In terms of total money over the six years, Jackson could have earned in excess of $290 million and his average per year would exceed Russell Wilson's recent deal at $48.5 APY, which did adjust the Ravens final offer but the contract was not fully guaranteed as Jackson sought.— Chris Mortensen (@mortreport) September 11, 2022
Jackson received active counsel from the NFLPA at the highest levels and the union advised that based on performance and age (25) he was justified to demand a fully guaranteed contract if that's what he wanted, sources added.— Chris Mortensen (@mortreport) September 11, 2022
Jackson gets $23 million on 5th-year option and for now sources say he is willing to explore the Kirk Cousins strategy.— Chris Mortensen (@mortreport) September 11, 2022
The team can use franchise tag on Jackson in 2023 and 2024 - the union's model projects formula would net him about $100 million fully guaranteed for two years.
If Jackson takes that path, absent a new contract, he will be an unrestricted free agent in 2025 and use leverage to get his fully guaranteed contact from the Ravens (his preference) or entertain other options, sources added.— Chris Mortensen (@mortreport) September 11, 2022
Union sources framed the Ravens' talks with Jackson as "good faith" although the team included $2.5 million in annual de-escalator clauses if Jackson did not attend a high % of off-season workouts.— Chris Mortensen (@mortreport) September 11, 2022
FYI: Fully guaranteed money covers regardless of skill, injury and salary cap.
Since then, Schefter has clarified what the deal was.
.@AdamSchefter broke down the proposed 5-year extension Lamar Jackson turned down ahead of the 2022 season: pic.twitter.com/8QXem1NAg9— NFL on ESPN (@ESPNNFL) March 14, 2023
“Here’s the deal. This is something that Chris Mortensen and I reported in September. Nothing new,” Schefter said. “We saw the contract back then and it was reviewed and the contract included $133 million guaranteed at signing. Fully guaranteed. Then, essentially, there were injury guarantees that brought it up to $175 million guaranteed for injury. That’s real. It was $168 million—there was another $7 million that is accounted for at a later date that makes it $175 million in guaranteed salary. Then, we mention this springing guarantee of basically $25 million. It would’ve raised it from $175 million to $200 million if he was on the roster on the fifth day of the 2026 league year. So, three years from now, if he’s on the roster, he gets another 25 [million dollars guaranteed].”
Schefter goes on to explain why it is essentially $175 million guaranteed.
“Essentially, for that $175 million not to kick in, Baltimore would’ve had to release him now and take a cap hit of $70 million. They’re not doing that.”
NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport was also on air on Tuesday and shared what he’s heard.
From Free Agency Frenzy: Lamar Jackson pulled back the curtain and gave us a window into the #Ravens negotations. pic.twitter.com/jGxvVKBFMS— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) March 14, 2023
“We had heard that the Ravens offered him a fully guaranteed deal. I’d heard that it was a shorter deal,” Rapoport said. “It seems to be, not 100-percent guaranteed but it seems to be what Lamar Jackson is indicating that he got a three-year deal for $133 million fully guaranteed from the Ravens.”
He also shared different methods in which the Ravens have attempted to sign Jackson.
“The Ravens have tried every different way to get this contract done. Long, short, a lot of guarantees, not as much guarantees but high APY,” Rapoport said. “It simply has not happened. So Lamar Jackson is showing us, ‘Here’s what I turned down.’”