The Baltimore Ravens placed the non-exclusive franchise tag on quarterback Lamar Jackson, the team confirmed via social media. Jackson is now available to negotiate a long-term contract with other franchises. Baltimore maintains the right to either match an offer sheet, or receive two first-round selections in exchange for Jackson.
It’s worth acknowledging that if Jackson waits until after the 2023 NFL Draft to sign an offer sheet, his new franchise can still utilize their first-round selection this year, deferring the pair of owed picks to Baltimore to 2024 and 2025, per Jaime Eisner. Clubs without 2023 first-rounders (such as Miami and San Francisco) would also be permitted to make offers.
We’ve swiftly identified three potential franchises Lamar Jackson should sign an offer sheet with (the Atlanta Falcons reportedly don’t have interest).
The Dolphins don’t possess a 2023 first-rounder after forfeiting the selection following a league-initiated tampering investigation. They’re one of those franchises that would have to wait until after the draft to sign Jackson to an offer sheet. Jackson should be tempted by the possibility of joining the Dolphins to consider waiting for them to become available.
Dolphins head coach Mike McDaniel is a creative play-caller that could maximize Jackson’s skill set. The Dolphins are still mulling whether or not to exercise the fifth-year option on Tua Tagovailoa. It’s a complicated decision after Tagovailoa suffered a string of head injuries throughout the 2022 campaign. As of now, Tagovailoa is set to enter a contract year in 2023. Jackson would be inheriting an exciting supporting cast in Miami that’s spearheaded by Tyreek Hill and Jaylen Waddle.
The Commanders released Carson Wentz from his contract following a failed experiment. This leaves the Commanders without a clear-cut option at starting quarterback. Are the Commanders really going to hand the starting job over to the inexperienced Sam Howell?
Head coach Ron Rivera is entering a do-or-die campaign. The appointment of new offensive coordinator Eric Bieniemy adds intrigue here. Bieniemy possesses a brilliant offensive mind and he’s finally getting an opportunity to install and call an offense of his own. Bieniemy did terrific work alongside Patrick Mahomes and Andy Reid in Kansas City. Bieniemy should be pounding the table for Washington to sign Jackson to an offer sheet. The Commanders own the 16th overall selection. They won’t be within striking distance to draft Bryce Young, Will Levis, Anthony Richardson, or C.J. Stroud.
This one would come out of left field. Jared Goff played quality football throughout the 2022 campaign for the ascending Lions. Detroit averaged a fifth-ranked 26.6 points per contest. Goff is still viewed as a bridge-type starter. The Lions could save $20.9 million by releasing Goff, per Spotrac. They’d take on a manageable $10 million dead cap charge.
Offensive coordinator Ben Johnson spurned head coaching interest to remain in Detroit. Johnson would welcome an opportunity to coach a dual-threat quarterback like Jackson. The Lions have two first-round selections in 2023, meaning they’d hold onto one of those picks by signing Jackson to an offer sheet. Acquiring Jackson would immediately make the Lions legitimate Super Bowl contenders in the NFC.
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