Top 5 Lamar Jackson landing spots for 2023-2024 NFL season
If 2019 MVP Lamar Jackson can’t agree a deal with the Baltimore Ravens, where might he end up?
The 2019 National Football League MVP, Lamar Jackson, is currently facing a standoff with the Baltimore Ravens over his new contract. The Ravens have made what they feel is a fair offer to retain Jackson for the long term, but the young quarterback doesn’t believe he’s being offered fair value for his talents. We now live in a world where a Lamar Jackson trade could be right around the corner, and that feels a little crazy.
Jackson is a two-time Pro Bowler who led the NFL in passing touchdowns during his MVP and First Team All-Pro season on 2019. The past two seasons have been tough on the Ravens, who have dealt with injuries across the board. Their two-year run of bad luck has included 10 games when they were missing Lamar Jackson.
One of the games without Jackson was the Ravens’ meeting with the Bengals in the most recent NFL postseason. Lamar was unable to return from a knee injury in time to compete in the playoffs.
The Ravens QB is representing himself in contract negotiations, and while the franchise is keen to keep him, other teams around the NFL now have the opportunity to offer him a deal. The Ravens can then choose to either match the contract offer or allow their quarterback to leave in return for two first-round draft picks.
If Lamar ends up joining another team for more money than the Ravens were willing to offer, Baltimore will receive the two first-rounders and potentially go with Tyler Huntley on an interim basis while they work out their next move at quarterback.
Did Lamar Jackson get traded?
He has not yet been traded, but Lamar Jackson trade rumors are swirling with the recent news of his non-exclusive franchise tag. Any team that decides to offer Jackson a contract would then have to give Baltimore the opportunity to match its value or permit him to leave in a trade that would cost the new team two first-round picks.
Some teams have declared that they are not interested in acquiring Lamar Jackson, but it's unclear whether this is genuine or a strategy to lessen market competition. If every team publicly expressed interest in Jackson, it could drive up his price. Therefore, even though some teams have announced their disinterest, a few are still included on this list.
There are several Lamar Jackson landing spots that make complete sense. It remains uncertain, however, how much the rest of the NFL values him and his salary demands in relation to talent available in the upcoming NFL draft. Going with draft picks would be more cost-effective for teams over the next four to five years.
The Baltimore Ravens trade rumors surrounding their quarterback will be unsettling for the team’s fans, who are now waiting to see what their fate will be.
Ranking the Top 5 Potential Landing Spots for Lamar Jackson in the 2023-2024 NFL season
- Lamar Jackson to the Green Bay Packers
There is certainly movement in New York. The Jets are clearing cap space and GM Joe Douglas has never been shy when it comes to making a splash with his roster.
If Aaron Rodgers does in fact end up wearing Jets green this season, the Green Bay Packers would either look to Jordan Love or explore the quarterback market for Rodgers’ replacement. Should the future Hall of Fame quarterback decide to move on from Green Bay for a couple of seasons, or even retire, I’d imagine the Packers very quickly become a front runner for Lamar Jackson.
The Packers franchise is already built around a quarterback’s mega contract. Green Bay has a great defense, good run game, and an exciting young receiving group. If a Baltimore Ravens Lamar Jackson trade did in fact go through, Jackson would land in a good situation if he ends up playing home games at Lambeau Field next season.
- Lamar Jackson to the Carolina Panthers
Carolina Panthers head coach Frank Reich will now get the opportunity to select his own quarterback at the 2023 NFL draft. However, Carolina has the ninth overall pick in a draft year that could see four quarterbacks taken with the top four picks.
Carolina might look to trade up in the draft to secure a top-four spot and make sure they get a guy they want to take the franchise forward. The Panthers could also retain their draft picks and players while simply paying Lamar Jackson to fill the QB vacancy instead.
The Panthers also have a strong defense and great pieces in place to rebuild their roster. Jeremy Chinn, Brian Burns and Derrick Henry make for a great defensive core, while DJ Moore has proven year after year that he’s one of the league's most consistent receivers, regardless of the quarterback he plays with. Now might be the time to give him Lamar Jackson and let them go to work.
Reich is a QBs coach through and through, and Lamar Jackson would have a great opportunity in working with him in Carolina.
- Lamar Jackson to the Indianapolis Colts
Colts fans must have attachment issues at this point when it comes to quarterbacks. Since Andrew Luck's surprise retirement in 2018, the Colts have fielded seven starting QBs, including one-year stints by Philip Rivers, Carson Wentz, and Matt Ryan.
Ryan is still in town for now, but there’s a chance he gets cut to save cap space. The Colts have the fourth overall selection in the draft, and everybody knows they’re in the market for a franchise quarterback.
Pro football rumors are swirling and saying that Indianapolis wouldn’t be shy in trading up into the top two to get the guy they want to put an end to the QB issues they’ve been facing for over five years now. That solution could come in the form of CJ Stroud, Bryce Love, Anthony Richardson or, perhaps, Lamar Jackson.
Indy has the pieces to be an immediate contender if they get their quarterback situation right, and that might mean going with Lamar Jackson and his MVP caliber experience over an unproven rookie.
- Lamar Jackson to the Atlanta Falcons
The Atlanta Falcons had a young quarterback once before who was capable of rushing for over 1,000 yards per season. Perhaps bringing in Lamar Jackson could reignite the franchise that’s been facing a slump since its Super Bowl appearance in 2017.
Atlanta is rebuilding -- that much is clear. The roster needs a lot of work, but Lamar could really put his own stamp on that team and have it built around him. The Falcons have spent high draft picks on offensive weapons over the past couple of years, adding Kyle Pitts out of Florida and Drake London out of USC. Now it’s time for Atlanta to determine who will be their quarterback.
The defense needs work, but the Falcons have more money than almost every team in the NFL heading into free agency this off-season. They have a top-10 draft pick that could bring them a real difference-maker on the defensive side of the football. That means they could spend some money on a veteran talent like Jackson.
If you add Lamar and several defensive pieces to the Falcons roster, you are suddenly looking at a very different Atlanta team.
- Lamar Jackson to the Washington Commanders
Although Washington is one of the teams that has declined having interest in adding Lamar Jackson, I believe it's the ideal match. Let me explain why.
Washington has spent years building one of the league’s most stout defensive lines. Montez Sweat, Daron Payne, Jonathan Allen and Chase Young are all first-round selections, but the Commanders have been unable to settle on a signal-caller to complement the defense they’ve put together.
With the hiring of Eric Bieniemy to lead their offense, the Commanders would make a fantastic pairing with Lamar Jackson. In addition to its seasoned coaching staff, the team already has an impressive array of receiver talent, including Terry McLaurin, Curtis Samuel, and second-year wideout Jahan Dotson. If Lamar Jackson were to join the team, there's no doubt Commanders fans would feel a palpable shift in the air.
The Commanders don’t pick until No. 16 in the draft’s first round, which is not going to be high enough to land a new franchise quarterback. So, what’s the solution? Who can they provide Eric Bieniemy with to coach at the QB position? Are they planning on going with Sam Howell for next season? Maybe, but, in my humble opinion, the Commanders would be foolish not to at least discuss a contract with Lamar Jackson.
Parameters for Rankings
These potential landing spots for Lamar Jackson have been ranked based on the potential fit for the quarterback and the feasibility of that franchise being able to make a trade for Lamar work. Issues such as the franchise’s financial situation, roster, and win-now potential have all been taken into consideration.
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