The Ravens and Lamar Jackson might be heading for an inevitable divorce. According to Jeremy Fowler and Jamison Hensley, if there is no compromise in the contract negotiations, the possibility of a trade is more likely than ever — enter the Falcons.
*I would like it to be known that I believe the Ravens and Lamar Jackson will work out a deal, and he won’t be traded*
Atlanta has been mentioned probably more than any other potential destination if the Ravens trade Jackson. It makes sense for several reasons, despite there being nothing more than speculation.
Last offseason, Arthur Blank rolled out the red carpet for Deshaun Watson; one would expect them to be in the running for another elite quarterback. Lamar Jackson also fits Arthur Smith’s offense seamlessly. There is a roadblock to all of this, though. The Falcons would have to give up significant compensation to acquire Jackson and then allocate a large number of funds to an extension.
This begs the question: how far would the Falcons be willing to go? Michael Rothstein of ESPN answers:
Would the Falcons part with the capital it will take to trade for Lamar Jackson?
The Falcons should at least inquire about Jackson, but at some point, there should be a limit as to what they will be willing to give up to land the Ravens quarterback. They are not a quarterback away from contending. They have questions on every level of the defense, including the defensive line (which needs a makeover), and have holes at receiver and potentially on the offensive line. Atlanta has cap space to work with for the first time in the Arthur Smith/Terry Fontenot era, and trading for Jackson would eliminate both the draft capital and cap space they worked hard to open up. So inquire? Sure. But if it gets pretty costly, the Falcons do like Desmond Ridder and would be wise to see what they have in their second-year quarterback. — Michael Rothstein
Rothstein came at it as what the Falcons should do, not what they will do. I agree that parting ways with a considerable amount of assets isn’t wise, but I think the Falcons know that or Deshaun Watson would be in Atlanta right now. The Browns gave the quarterback a record-breaking fully guaranteed contract. If Arthur Blank and the Falcons were willing to do anything to get a franchise quarterback, they would’ve matched that offer, and Watson would’ve chosen Atlanta due to his ties to the city and owner.
Lamar Jackson will cost a similar amount in trade assets and money. I don’t think the Falcons would acquiesce to his demand for a fully guaranteed deal because they didn’t with Deshaun Watson.
Photographer: Michael Allio/Icon Sportswire