Lamar Jackson's contract situation: Is Kyler Murray's payday a yardstick for Lamar Jackson?
The Baltimore Ravens have reportedly sought to renew starting quarterback Lamar Jackson's contract for some time. At least, that's the impression they have given the public. The player has been the reluctant one.
The Ravens have claimed that they are "working at Lamar's pace." The reason Jackson is adopting this strategy becomes increasingly obvious with each new QB agreement that is finalized.
Kyler Murray was in the news for most of last year after his representatives put concerted pressure on the Arizona Cardinals to commit the quarterback to a mega deal. Murray finally signed a five-year agreement in July for £188 million with £130 million guaranteed.
After cementing himself as the starting quarterback for the coming years, Murray showed enough talent and output to merit an enormous new contract. In the 2022 season, he could only throw for 2,368 yards and 14 touchdowns because of his ongoing health issues, and the Cardinals ended up with a 4-13 record.
The Cardinals organization has taken steps to sack head coach Kliff Kingsbury since the terrible season ended. Murray's fitness for the 2023 campaign, meanwhile, is in doubt due to an ACL tear.
Spotrac reports that the average yearly valuation of Kyler Murray's deal is more than Josh Allen's $43 million, Deshaun Watson's $46 million, Patrick Mahomes' $45 million. It's slightly lower than Aaron Rodgers' average compensation of $50.2 million.
Jackson, a two-time Pro Bowler and once first-team All-Pro, was chosen as NFL MVP in 2019. This was after he led the league with 36 TD passes, throwing just six interceptions, and rushing for 1,206 yards and seven scores.
The Cardinals have only made the playoffs once under Murray's leadership. That was when they were easily defeated by the Los Angeles Rams in the NFC Wild Card Round two seasons ago.
Although Murray was the 2019 NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year and a two-time Pro Bowl participant, he lacks Jackson's first-team All-Pro designation and MVP honors.
Lamar Jackson and Kyler Murray have both battled injuries in the last two years. Since they enjoy using their legs and have smaller frames than the usual quarterback, there are certain huge question marks with them going ahead.
It did not deter the Cardinals from spending a lot of money on Murray, so the Ravens shouldn't be discouraged from doing the same with Jackson.
Lamar Jackson has considerably more accomplishments in the game than Murray has, giving him the power to demand a higher salary than the 25-year-old.
How much is Lamar Jackson holding out for?
Lamar Jackson deserves a slightly bigger contract than Kyler Murray. But it is tough to see him exceeding the overall amount of the deals handed to Mahomes and Allen. This is considering that they have both guided their sides further in the postseason than Jackson has.
As a result, anticipate that any team that signs Jackson will offer him just around $240 million over five years with $170 million guaranteed. If this happens, Lamar Jackson will become the quarterback with the second-highest average annual value and third-highest overall contract worth.