Yesterday, the Baltimore Ravens made their biggest transaction of the offseason to-date, agreeing to terms with free agent wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. on a one-year contract. Shortly after, it was reported that QB Lamar Jackson and “OBJ” had conversations with each other about winning a super bowl in Baltimore during free agency.
Now, we’re continuing to learn more information about the Jackson and Beckham Jr. dynamic. According to NFL Network’s Tom Pelissero, Jackson was “actively recruiting” the former Pro Bowl and All-Pro wideout to sign with the Ravens.
Odell is finally a Raven, agreeing to a 1-year deal on #EasterSunday — @TomPelissero told us how it all went down and what this could mean for Lamar Jackson:#NFL #NFLDraft #RavensFlock @obj @lj_era8 pic.twitter.com/mucIS0Hl9y— Rich Eisen Show (@RichEisenShow) April 10, 2023
“Lamar was also in communication with Odell,” Pelissero said. “This was not a situation where Lamar . . finds out that Odell is coming. They were talking. I think it’s fair to say there was some recruiting going on.”
NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport later added that there was a “clear understanding” that Jackson would be quarterback throwing passes to Beckham Jr. next year.
From NFL Now: The Odell Beckham Jr signing with the #Ravens not only locked in a top WR... it also revealed that Lamar Jackson was actively recruiting him. He plans to be throwing passes to Beckham. pic.twitter.com/CFz7vZLTtG— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) April 10, 2023
This isn’t shocking news given yesterday’s reporting on the two talking about teaming up together, but it is noteworthy. Jackson playing an active role in recruiting Beckham Jr. to Baltimore, or any player of that matter, would indicate he plans on being with the Ravens in 2023.
Although this runs counter to the quarterback’s trade request from the team last month, it’s hard to see why he’d lure Beckham Jr. to the Ravens if he planned on playing under center elsewhere. Immediately following the news of Beckham Jr. signing with the Ravens, Jackson posted a screenshot on social media of himself and OBJ on a video call.
Then, a few hours later, video surfaced of the two together at a night club.
Lamar Jackson and Odell Beckham Jr. spotted in the club popping bottles after becoming teammates— Daily Loud (@DailyLoud) April 10, 2023
Jackson and the Ravens have been at a contract impasse for months on end now, with the two sides unable to come to terms in negotiations. Whether a long-term deal is struck in the coming weeks remains to be seen, but the developments of the past 24 hours certainly suggest the 2019 league MVP will be wearing purple and black again.
It’s possible Jackson could play out this coming season under the non-exclusive franchise tag still, too, which he has yet to officially sign.