COLUMN: Lamar’s holdout is setting the right example

Saunders: Superstar QBs should start betting on themselves


Nick Wass | Associated Press

Baltimore Ravens quarterback Lamar Jackson carries the ball during the second half of an NFL football game against the Cincinnati Bengals on Sunday. Jackson was the Ravens’ leading rusher with 12 carries for 58 yards in a 19-17 win over the Bengals. (Nick Wass | Associated Press)

Baltimore Ravens quarterback Lamar Jackson declined a new contract over the offseason because he is a $230 million player.

The Ravens and Jackson couldn’t reach an agreement on an extension after they attempted to give him a $133 million guaranteed contract.

Jackson is an amazing talent and is the most unique quarterback in the NFL. He established his dominance and proved he is a top-five quarterback when he won Most Valuable Player in his second season in 2019.

According to NFL Insider Ian Rapoport, Jackson is looking for a contract worth about $230 million. He is deserving of a big contract because of his talent on the field.

Jackson is the most mobile quarterback in the NFL with his ability to collect rushing yards. He is the only quarterback in the top 10 in league rushing as he sits in ninth place with 374 yards.

Coming into the league, Jackson was told by people he should switch positions because he likes to run the ball a lot, but he can pass the ball great as well. He ranks 18 in passing with 1,067 yards.

Jackson still manages to win games despite losing his primary receiver Marquise “Hollywood” Brown after he was traded to the Arizona Cardinals during the 2022 NFL Draft. Brown was Jackson’s go to receiver because the Ravens lack a superstar receiver talent, but without Brown, Jackson still manages to win games.

Jackson and other up-and-coming quarterbacks should get paid more because household name quarterbacks such as the Denver Broncos’ Russell Wilson, the Green Bay Packers’ Aaron Rodgers, and Cleveland Browns’ Deshaun Watson are being paid big dollars and aren’t producing their worth on the field.

Watson received a fully guranteed $230 million contract from the Browns after not playing all last year, dealing with sexual misconduct allegations against him. Watson will also not play 11 games this season after he was suspended by the commissioner for violating the NFL’s personal-conduct policy.

Jackson is not being thought about for this much money from his own team should be a sign of disrespect from Baltimore.

Watson hasn’t even proven that he is worth this much money because he hasn’t played since January 3, 2020 yet he received a big offer. Jackson has proven game after game that he is a threat to teams in the NFL and has put the team on his back, carrying them to victory.

Ravens’ general manager Eric DeCosta needs to stop disrespecting Jackson and give him the $230 million contract he’s earned. If he refuses to give Jackson what he wants, he will likely leave the Ravens and go to a different team who can meet his wants and potentially win them a championship instead.

Jackson declining the Ravens latest offer and betting on himself is a good way of showing the new guard of quarterbacks such as Joe Burrow, Justin Herbert and Tua Tagovailoa that they should bet on themselves if they feel they are worth the money.

He will hopefully start a trend where players will want to bank on themselves more to get bigger deals once they see Jackson receive a larger contract.

Jackson will and should receive a $230 million contract because he is, in fact, a $230 million player and he has shown it since joining the league.

Baltimore currently sits in first place in the AFC North because of their star duo of Jackson and tight end Mark Andrews. This team can be a championship contender for years if they make smart moves by extending Jackson.