On Monday, Baltimore Ravens quarterback Lamar Jackson announced via Twitter that he has requested a trade.
“A letter to my Fans
I want to first thank you all for all of the love and support you consistently show towards me. All of you are amazing and I appreciate y’all so much. I want you all to know not to believe everything you read about me. Let me personally answer your questions
in regards to my future plans. As of March 2nd I requested a trade from the Ravens organization for which the Ravens has not been interested in meeting my value, any and everyone that’s has met me or been around me know I love the game of football and my dream is to help a team
win the super bowl. You all are great but I had to make a business decision that was best for my family and I. No matter how far I go or where my career takes me, I’ll continue to be close to my fans of Baltimore Flock nation and the entire State of Maryland. You’ll See me again”
This comes rather deliberately as Ravens head coach John Harbaugh sat down to speak with the press during the NFL’s annual league meeting, to which Harbaugh fielded numerous questions surrounding. But Harbaugh deflected most, stating he expect Jackson to be the Ravens quarterback Week 1.
How We Got Here
It’s been two seasons of contract negotiations for the Ravens and Jackson. The hang-up has always sounded like guaranteed money and each time it seemed something was getting closer, a new quarterback contract would shake the foundation. Then, the Cleveland Browns traded for Houston Texans quarterback Deshaun Watson amid a sexual assault scandal that involved more than 20 accusers. Along with trading for Watson, they then signed him to the biggest quarterback contract in NFL history, with the most guaranteed money in NFL history with a five-year, $230 million deal with 100-percent of the contract guaranteed. This deal didn’t shake the foundation, it erupted any headway to rubble.
Entering the 2022 season, Jackson announced he would cut off contract negotiations with Jackson at the start of the regular season. As the weeks turned to days and finally into hours, Ravens general manager Eric DeCosta announced they could not come to an agreement.
“Despite best efforts on both sides, we were unable to reach a contract extension with Lamar Jackson,” DeCosta stated. “We greatly appreciate how he has handled this process and we are excited about our team with Lamar leading the way. We will continue to work towards a long-term contract after the season, but for now we are looking forward to a successful 2022 campaign.”
Since then, the Ravens completed the 2022 season and contract negotiations began again for Jackson and the Ravens. However, reportedly, it’s been challenging to get Jackson to partake, according to The Athletic’s Jeff Zrebiec.
“There’s no way his comment in his end-of-season news conference about it taking “two to tango” or his speech at the recent NFL Scouting Combine about every negotiation requiring compromise on both sides were uttered by accident,” Zrebiec wrote. “It’s been a challenge at times to get Jackson to the negotiating table, and he re-enacted the Heisman pose on the Ravens’ attempts to accelerate the talks for much of last offseason.”
The relationship has appeared fractured for some time now, and according to Jackson, 25 days ago, he requested a trade from the franchise.