Luke Jones and Dennis Koulatsos discuss realities of the few QB seats left for Lamar Jackson in NFL
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Luke Jones, Dennis Koulatsos
Dennis Koulatsos 00:02
Welcome back. My next guest is the great Luke Jones always doing fantastic things for Baltimore positive wn St. 1570 am spreading his wisdom on Twitter and the Twitterverse. Welcome and welcome and Luke,
Luke Jones 00:16
Dennis, how are you, my friend?
Dennis Koulatsos 00:18
Doing? Well, my friend Great to see you. And you know what? I’ve been reading your columns and seen some of the you’ve you’ve put out there the frustration some of the fans are writing about it and emoting about right lack of movement and free agency, the Lamar Jackson situation feels like the organization’s kind of stuck in the mud, doesn’t it?
Luke Jones 00:41
Yeah, I mean, as I wrote it, Baltimore positive.com, it really feels like no man’s land, you know, they’re in this position with Lamar Jackson, and understandably want to be in a position from a cap standpoint to be able to match a potential offer sheet even though the early indications are, unless there’s a team that’s moving very quietly in the darkness, so to speak, that there isn’t a whole lot of interest, at least right now. But the Ravens want to maintain that flexibility. But at the same time, and fully understanding the Ravens historically have not been a team that’s a major player in free agency. That doesn’t mean they sit it out entirely either. And to this point, what what can they say other than they’ve resigned a few of their own, I’ll be it. Lesser players, guys that aren’t exactly at the top of the radar, or the top of the depth chart. But other than some depth, guys, it’s just been a whole lot of hurry up and wait. So it’s kind of left them in this position where what’s going to happen with Lamar Jackson? And what does that mean for the rest of the roster? At least for 2023? I mean, John Harbaugh and you’ve heard other coaches say this. In the past, you’re either getting better, you’re getting worse, or you don’t stay the same. It’s difficult to look at the Ravens right now and say they certainly wouldn’t say they’re any better. And I think you’d have to say they’re worse. So now, it’s late March. They don’t play another game for several months. The offseason is not over. But at the same time, when you’re looking at this Lamar Jackson situation and doesn’t feel like there’s a resolution in sight, you kind of just sit back and you’re just kind of wondering, okay, what’s going to happen? And what does that mean, at least for the 2023 season? Whether Lamar Jackson is the Ravens quarterback or not? It just you’re kind of in that position? Are you really gonna be able to maximize your chances to win this coming season? And that’s where it’s really difficult to say that right now.
Dennis Koulatsos 02:42
Yeah, there’s no question about that. And, of course, everywhere I go, people are asking them Sure. The same thing. They’re asking you how they’re going to improve their receiver room. We know we see the Nelson Aguilar is getting the kick the tires on him. There’s guys out there. They just don’t have the cap space, really, to romance somebody is going to significantly improve the wide receiver but even DeAndre Hopkins, I mean, let’s, you know, he’s over 30. He’s had some injuries to the last couple of years.
Luke Jones 03:09
Yeah, I mean, really, the problem is twofold. One, as you mentioned, that the cap space now they could create cap space, again, they have the ability to do that. And they can do some simple or even Max restructures, in clear a lot of cap space, which is what they would need to do if there is a team, although I don’t know who in Indianapolis, whoever it would be to sign Lamar Jackson to an offer sheet to create that cap space space, if you want to match that offer sheet. So you have that issue. So you’re trying to maintain as much cap flexibility as you can. But then there’s the other piece of this and we talked about this a lot with the offensive coordinator search is even DeAndre Hopkins who would be a trade. The the the assumption is what you would have to redo his deal. I mean, that’s typically how this works. When you’re talking about a veteran player of that ilk, or better, you know, look at look at Davante Adams, look at Tyreke Hill last offseason, AJ Brown, all those trades were accompanied by a long term contract and ridden contract. Now, that doesn’t mean Hopkins is going to get top of the market, but he want his deal to be adjusted. So the point I’m making there is clearly that wide receiver has some input as far as how a trade would work. So if you’re talking about that situation, or a potential why a potential free agent even though the board’s dwindled, and it wasn’t a great crop of free agent wide receivers to begin with, who’s looking at the Ravens right now, with the uncertainty with Lamar Jackson and saying, Yeah, I’ll out not only will I sign up, but I’ll give you a team friendly deal. That’s not happening unless you’re talking about the Nelson Aguilar of the league who aren’t moving the needle anyway. So they really are in a position where they’re stuck in that way. Now, that doesn’t mean that they can’t get something done at some point via trade and maybe that trade comes closer to the draft or after the draft when there’s maybe there’s a little more clear Already on at least Lamar Jackson’s 2023 status. But, you know, it might just come down to they’re gonna have to look at the draft. And certainly there are wide receivers that you can look at in that. And we’ve mentioned some of them in passing, you know, I mean, Jackson Smith and jagah Quentin Johnson, of course, we’ve talked a lot about ze flowers, you know, those are all guys conceivably could be there when the Ravens picks so it might have to be a draft pick just because of their cap situation. And the reality of is any notable veteran player. And again, there aren’t a lot of notable veteran wide receivers, Odell Beckham, let’s throw him into the conversation, regardless of the injury history and potential concerns there. They’re looking at the Ravens right now and saying, Well, maybe I’ll come sign there. But I don’t have a guarantee that Lamar Jackson is going to be the quarterback. So I’m certainly not going to give you any kind of a detriment, you know, a team friendly discount or anything like that. So it just leaves them in a tough spot right now. So you know that that’s not to make an excuse for them. But I think it is the reality of where they are. And that’s the problem when this Lamar Jackson situation has gotten to where it is at this point, two plus years later, from the time that they could initially sign him, and you still haven’t done it. And there are certainly repercussions that the rest of the roster and their ability to try to improve their chances, and at least 2023 are being impacted by this situation. Clearly,
Dennis Koulatsos 06:29
no question about it. And the other piece, of course, as much as we we get geeked up about rookies, they don’t always pan out, right. So there’s also a learning curve. So we know we can’t expect a rookie wide receiver to come in and, and give us 85 catches for 950 yards and nine touchdowns. Right. So there is a learning curve in the NFL.
Luke Jones 06:52
Yeah, exactly. I mean, you never or Let’s rephrase that you rarely ever want to be in a position where you are counting on a rookie player to play now. You draft someone in the first round, there’s clearly expectations that they’re going to make it on the field. But you don’t want to be in that position where you’re drafting a guy to be your, for lack of a better term, your Savior at a position. Right. And that’s not to say the Ravens don’t have any talented at wide receiver. We’ve talked a lot about Rashad Bateman. But there are question marks, especially after the injuries the last couple of years in terms of him fulfilling his potential, so you have uncertainty with him. And then if you are going to draft a wide receiver in the first round, and I’ll remind everyone Oh yeah, they still don’t have a starting caliber, outside corner opposite Marlon Humphrey. Until there’s, you know, either they bring back Marcus Peters, or they sign someone else. So you know, they visited with rock Eocene, who is someone who has started games in the NFL and is played at a high level. But what’s his price point? And again, we come back to the same questions with Lamar Jackson and his status holding everything up. So you know, when you have to premium positions of need on your roster, and you have a first round pick, which 22nd Overall, it’s not great, but you know, it is what it is. But you don’t have a second round pick. And yeah, you did use that to acquire row Quan Smith. So you keep that in the back of your mind. But that doesn’t eliminate the reality that you have a need at two premium positions. And you have one pick in the first two rounds. So as things stand right now, and again, I do think at some point in time, they’re gonna bring in some players who are outside the organization, you know, it might not be a high profile guy, but they’ll make a move at some point. So I would assume at one of those two positions, though, address, and again, it may just be Marcus Peters coming back, because doesn’t appear that he’s had a robust market to open free agency. But you’re just in a position where these are really important positions, let alone talking about defensive line depth in the wake of class Campbell being released or looking at some other positions on either side of the football interior offensive line, you know, they’re a little thinner, that you know, they’re thinner, they’re now with Tristan cologne, having moved on on the heels of Ben power signing with Denver, so you have other positions you’d like to address as well. But you have five draft picks, and you only have one in the first two rounds. So counting on any other draft picks beyond that first round pick to play significant snaps in 2023. That’s, that’s pretty ambitious, right there. So does that mean they’re a candidate to trade back? Different things like that, of course, you know, that’s always on the table with the Ravens with the way that they maneuver and try to operate with the draft on an annual basis, but you just look at their needs, compared to kind of the cards that they have in their deck so to speak. And it’s tough not to look at it and say they’re, they’re really short handed as far as the the resources that they have compared to what you would believe they need to be able to do to improve their chances to contend in 2023 and that’s even working under the assumption that Lamar Jackson is is, in fact going to be their quarterback this year, which, again, I’m not assuming anything, even though I, as I’ve said, you know now, a couple of weeks since we got to the franchise tag deadline, that each day that passes, it does feel more likely that Lamar will be their quarterback for the coming season at least. But I’m not making that assumption and ready to just make that bold proclamation that it’s a slam dunk because nothing about this has been a slam dunk going back two plus years to win. We all thought a contract extension was going to be a mere formality.
Dennis Koulatsos 10:33
And let’s keep in mind that airfare costs the splash signings some have worked out in some haven’t Marcus Peters has. Earl Thomas did not write row Quan Smith has a unique a Glock we didn’t pan out right. Kelly has Campbell’s that was a very good signing. So that’s what I try to tell folks. Just because you signed someone doesn’t mean they’re gonna come in and be a savory deposition.
Luke Jones 10:57
Oh, very true. Very true. And that’s why I would say, I don’t think there’s reason for panic. Yeah. Well, people are gonna feel how they’re gonna feel about Lamar Jackson. At this point. I’m not going to tell people not to panic over that in a big picture sense. Although I do think that the report from Mike Florio pro football talk where there was a source saying that someone from the Mars campus reaching out saying that he’s, quote, ready to move on from other teams. Well, that’s negotiating 101 I mean, what do you think he’s gonna say? If he’s trying to drum up interest trying to drum up more guaranteed money? Oh, wait a second. He’s gonna they’re gonna tell teams while Lamar doesn’t want to leave the ravens, but we do him a solid and offer him more money than you know, like, I’ll be come on. That’s where we need to people need to let go of the idea that existed for quite a long time as far as these negotiations, you know, the warm fuzzies. Right. The idea that it was Kumbaya, that, that the ravens and Lamar were in lockstep and they were working at his pace, yada, yada, yada, we need to let go of that, you know, and we need to understand that, even if they still work something out, even if they compromise, even if they come to a long term agreement, at some point here in the not too distant future, not predicting that. But even if they do, it could still get uglier before it gets prettier in that regard. And Lamar teased over the weekend that he’s got a quote, exclusive interview with himself that’s going to be coming out on his YouTube channel, which, you know, I do wonder about the timing of that was late Saturday night. And now several days later, we’re still waiting. Part of me wonders if someone in his camp kind of said, maybe or NFLPA or someone said, maybe you don’t want to do that, or maybe it’ll be launched as where you and I are talking right now. But what’s he going to say in that? What What? Is there anything earth shattering with that? You know, where where is his headspace right now, as it pertains to the Baltimore Ravens just in a big picture sense. Is he looking to move on that the language that that report used is different than him saying, I want to move on from the Ravens or I’m done with the Baltimore Ravens. And he hasn’t said that to this point. Now, we have no idea what he’s thinking right now. So I don’t want to make any assumptions. But I also think it would be wrong to just assume that he’s just going to play on the tag if there’s no offer sheet, and that’s that, or, or he’s just gonna say, oh, yeah, I’ll take the Ravens offer. Great. You’d love if he would, for the Ravens sake, but I just don’t know. And we know Maher is a unique, he’s a unique individual. So you never really know exactly what he’s thinking. So until we hear something more concrete from him, and maybe it comes in that YouTube interview or not, it’s tough to make too many assumptions. That’s why I keep saying, prepare for anything, because we just don’t know at this point in time, even if the start of the open signing period, the start of the new league year, would appear to favor the Ravens in terms of leverage and this negotiation wherever it’s ultimately hidden.
Dennis Koulatsos 13:57
Well, this really stinks loose, loose on a number of levels. Ideally, you want you have your quarterback all in he’s going to get the OTAs or short, he’s going to be there and we just don’t have that assurance. It could happen. But it could also goes sideways. Lamar Jackson may make business decisions, right? He doesn’t have to be there, he won’t be there. And that’s the the part for me that I dislike about this whole thing. Nevermind, the negotiation. The side is, again, he missed the OTAs. Last year March was made about that. And now we see this unusual negotiating, what port does doesn’t he understand that you have to have a certified agent to negotiate with teams, you can’t have one of your friends or uncertified agent, contact these teams and expect the response back I mean, it’s it’s amateurish, it’s a bad look, and it’s not a way to get a contract.
Luke Jones 14:50
It certainly won’t appear that way. And I mean, if this were a case, you know, if Lamar were just a free agent, you know, unrestricted no draft compensation tied to him. had no idea that the team would have to go through the offer sheet process and sign him and then hope that the Ravens don’t match or try to work out a trade with the Ravens that they, you know, essentially would say we’ll forego the offer sheet and you go, you know, we’ll sign them to the tag, you acquire him, we get our draft picks, you sign them to a long term deal. and off you go, you’re short of that. Those elements being eliminated, where a team would just basically do what the Browns did with Watson last year, even though Watson had a certified agent. It does make things really complicated, right? And whatever Lamar ultimately wants, whether we’re just talking about more guaranteed money to stay with the ravens, more guaranteed money from whatever team ultimately wants to give him the most. Or if it’s a case of after two years, he’s had it. And once how to Baltimore and as you would think, an agent, certified players agent for, you know, 1% 2% 3%. I’ve even seen some of these. And it’s anonymous reporting. So you take it with a grain of salt. But yeah, there have been anonymous reports out there that there would be agents that would take 1% commission from Lamar compared to the kind of standard 3% or there abouts. But, but it just comes down to that certified agent is working for you to get you what you want. I mean, we see this all the time in the NBA especially. And that’s where I’ve kind of said, this, I feel like Lamar has tried to take an NBA player approach to doing this. And it’s not the NBA, you know, so it’s just reality until probably not just him, but other quarterbacks try to take that kind of stance and really try to force action in that way. But the point is, you have an agent, and you kind of say, what your end goal, right is right? Your end game, okay, this is what I want. I wanted in this spot, whether I want to trade, you know, whatever it is, go get it for me. And, Lamar, if you had a certified agent a year ago, at this time, could have seen the Watson deal and said, I want this, how do I go about doing it? And that’s not the guarantee that that agent would have definitely gotten that from the Ravens. But the odds of it happening at that point in time, after having gone through another season where he got hurt, and did not was not able to finish the season. So there’s more injury concern than there was a year ago at this time. And it would you would not have the data points of Kyler Murray not getting a fully guaranteed deal. Yeah, you would look at that and kind of say, okay, you know, maybe there would have been more of a shot of him getting it at that point in time. But he didn’t. And look, that’s his prerogative. But it does really leave you in that position. Where is he going to be happy? It is, you know, if it is a case of 2023, he’s back for this season. And we’re talking about this in some shape or form again, next year at this time, which I shudder at that thought, but it’s certainly a non 0% likelihood of that happening and might be a very much higher than just say, a non zero at this point. But you kind of just look at it and say, what’s going to be what’s best for the ravens and for Lamar in that regard. Clearly the ravens, They don’t have an alternative at quarterback right now. I mean, it’s, you know, they didn’t go out and sign a bridge quarterback or a veteran backup to upgrade Tyler from high Tyler currently. I mean, is there a scenario where the Ravens really like him didn’t Hooker and they, you know, he’s there at 22, which would be an overdraft. But hey, you don’t have a second round pick. So if you’re going to try to take it, take a shot at it, it would almost be like what the Ravens did in 2018. Taking Lamar with the last pick of the first round, knowing that Joe Flacco was still going to be there guy, at least for the time being. So, you know, is there a scenario like that? No idea. But clearly, the Ravens aren’t in a position where they’re, they have an easy pathway to replacing Lamar. So there’s motivation that appears here. 2023, you want to try to maximize your chance to win with him? On the flip side? If you’re Lamar Jackson, and you’re digging in your heels, and you say, All right, you know what? An offer sheet hasn’t come to my liking, or an offer sheet just hasn’t come at all. But I’m still determined to get what I feel I’m worth which is a full guarantee or a much higher guarantee in line with what Deshaun Watson got. I’m going to play out the season. Okay, well, how does Lamar navigate that sweet spot in terms of protecting himself physically, but also understanding he’s got a new offense coordinator, also understanding that it would behoove him to have a better season than he’s had the last few seasons, one in terms of staying on the field to being consistent from week one all the way to the end of the season, as we’ve talked about, you know, little, little less consistency as the year went on the last two years. So how does he navigate that? So it’s just, it’s complicated. It really is. And I think what we found over For an over and over through the saga is anyone who’s made assumptions one way or the other, generally ended up looking. I don’t want to say foolish but have ended up not being correct, right. I mean, again two years ago people, fans are bristling that media would even ask the ravens and Lamar about the contract because they just assumed it was going to happen, right? Well, here we are. So that’s where you look at this thing. And you know, what’s going to be? If he is here for this coming season? What is going to be the best compromise? As far as when he reports as far as what the Ravens trying to do to maximize triangle win this year? As far as his compensation, you know, is it a case where Lamar is going to say, I’m not playing for $32.4 million? And do they maybe come up with a compromise to you bump up his pay, give them some incentives per game, so there’s incentive for him to play, if you’re worried about that whole narrative from the end of last season? I don’t know. But it’s just, it’s messy. And, you know, to your overall point, it’s a tough place to be, you don’t want to be in this kind of a place with any player, but specifically your franchise quarterback, where you just wonder about how much trust there really is between the two sides at this point in time, and that doesn’t mean that they hate each other. That doesn’t mean that it’s overly personal. But from a professional standpoint, when you’ve been at it so long trying to hammer out a deal one way or the other, whether you agree with the one side or the others methods or not, they’ve each had a position that carries some degree of merit to it. But when you haven’t been able to figure it out, and you’ve been at it that long, sorry, it’s just tough to look at that and feel like there’s a whole lot of trust between the two sides. And I think it’s really difficult to win and, and reach the pinnacle of success. That way, you can go out and look if Lamar is gonna be their quarterback, even if they make minimal additions. And they kind of just rely on the draft, there’ll be a team that’ll, at worst still be in the playoff mix, right. I mean, we’ve seen that they’ve been that good with Lamar Jackson. But to sit here and say that, I feel like they have a great chance to get to a Super Bowl, especially knowing how competitive and loaded this AFC is, if you haven’t been able to have a normal offseason to make some, you know, some meaningful upgrades and everything. Boy, that’s just that’s really difficult to kind of think about it in those terms. So I don’t know what the best solution is going to be. You know, again, you could talk about the Ravens looking like they have more leverage and looking like they were proven right. But you know, something that I appoint a question that I would ask Nestor going all the way back to pre 2022 going into the season when it looked like they probably weren’t getting a long term deal done. And I kept asking him the question, what constitutes a win for the Ravens here? You know, I mean, maybe Lamar just gives in eventually, when he sees that another team’s not giving him what he wants. But again, he has he isn’t a fully unrestricted free agents, so he can always hold on to that point. So I just look at it what really makes this a win for the Ravens. And you know, if it ends up being you have an unhappy Lamar Jackson coming back on the tag this year, I mean, okay, but it’s tough for me to look at that, along with all the roster limitations and challenges that accompany that and say that the ravens are in great position to really try to win a Super Bowl that way, so we’ll see how it plays out. But as I wrote it, Baltimore positive.com, this offseason of discontent for both the ravens and Lamar Jackson continues and doesn’t feel like we’re gonna have a quick resolution, especially when, if you’re the morris camp, it makes sense to at least try to wait it out into the draft and knowing that maybe some teams would pivot their thinking at quarterback by them, but you get the deeper you get into this offseason, it’s gonna be more and more difficult for teams to move the cap around and your roster construction around to even try to accommodate Lamar, let alone put in put an offer out there that the Ravens aren’t going to match. So he might just be stuck as it pertains to, you know, the contractually speaking this year. Unless, and this is where we go back to some of the more unsettling thoughts from the Ravens perspective. Go back to what we talked about last last training camp, unless Lamar flat out tries to play hardball and say, I’m not playing I’m not playing under the tag, you know, I’m not playing here. You know, whatever it is, until he does that. You kind of just look at this thing as being in a holding pattern that you’re just not going to be sure how it plays out.
Dennis Koulatsos 24:33
I think what we have to consider also our market dynamics, whether it’s the NFL quarterback or even my business, a year ago, loop we had virtually no inventory. We’re selling a lot of vehicles over MSRP Where are you later we have more inventory. We’re selling about a vehicle under MSRP. So a year ago there was only one quarterback taken in the first round. Can you pick it for the Steelers this year? There’s four quarterbacks projected to go on the top tensile team were desperate last year for quarterback. And the other piece of this is three of the four final teams in the playoffs, that quarterbacks would rookie contracts, all of them except Kansas City. And so if I’m Jimmy or say, Indianapolis, I can invest to one a million to Lamar Jackson or I can have a five year window open with a rookie quarterback. Yeah, I understand what understanding that that quarterback may or may not pan out, but at least I have a five year window open. And the sad thing with the Ravens is that their window has closed.
Luke Jones 25:37
Yeah, I mean, it’s closed on the rookie contract, right? I mean, you can still Yeah, you can still win. And look, it’s not to say Lamar Jackson can’t win a Super Bowl. If he’s on a long term contract. It becomes more difficult. Sure, sure. And that’s and that’s the thing that’s really frustrated me about this. I mean, how many different talking heads and former players can look, I think they mean, well, I’ve said this over and over, fundamentally speaking, Dennis, I’m absolutely in favor of players getting guaranteed contracts in a brutal sport like football, knowing how the billions, billions upon billions the NFL makes, I absolutely, fundamentally support that. But there’s fundamentally speaking, and there’s practically speaking and understanding where the system is today, understanding where the market is today, as you mentioned, four quarterbacks projected to go on the top 10 this year. Next year, you have Caleb Williams, and another really attractive quarterback class. There’s, there’s the element of Lamar is injury history, there’s the element of what he’s asking for, as far as a massive guarantee, there’s the two first round picks you have to give to the Ravens. There’s the reality of the salary cap, there’s the fact that he doesn’t have an agent, there is the reality that the Ravens could just flat out match an offer sheet and waste all that sweat equity on your own your side, all of that. That’s why I look at all of those different variables. And that’s where I just say, it’s not as simple as just saying, Just give him what he wants. Well, okay, well, what does that mean? 50 million? Should I give him 60 million? Should I give him 70 million a year fully guaranteed? You know, there’s there’s more nuance to it. And let’s be clear, that’s That’s to say that that’s not to say that Lamar Jackson doesn’t deserve the moon. I mean, it’s this idea that the Ravens have, quote, disrespected him as is phooey. You can say that the Ravens should pay him more or offer a more, I’ll hear that. But don’t sit here and say they disrespected him, when the full guarantee that they’ve offered him would be a clips guarantee at signing eclipses everyone but Deshaun Watson, now, we could say maybe there’s something to the idea of, and the reported number that’s been out there as 133, fully guaranteed at signing large or Deshaun. Watson got to 30. Right. Is there an argument to say the Ravens come out? And I don’t know if they’ve done this? Or you know, I guess they haven’t. I haven’t heard directly this from them or anything like that. Is there an argument to say, go up to 160, fully guaranteed, you know, somewhere like that, where you say, You know what, this is where the market was, we’re not going off the Cleveland Browns. But we’re still going to offer you a sizable jump as far as fully guaranteed money then talking about the the Russell Wilson and Kyler Murray deals that were done last offseason. Is that a compromise that maybe Lamar, maybe not in late March, but maybe three, three weeks from now, or maybe after the draft or maybe in early July? Before the franchise tag long term? Contract deadline? Maybe that’s ultimately what they can come to a compromise on? You know, so I’ll hear that. But this idea that the Ravens have disrespected this man or they won’t pay it, you know, there’s way more nuance involved here. There is from both sides. And, you know, I, I just said a couple of minutes ago, as much as I fundamentally am supportive of players getting fully guaranteed contracts in the NFL, at the same time, Lamar Jackson, with his playing style, and not knowing how well that’s going to age, coupled with the fact that he’s missed roughly a third of the action over the last two years. I don’t think he’s the best case study for trying to get that unless, and not many people talk about this and as much as the union’s been focused on Lamar Jackson, unless Joe burrow and Justin Herbert would come forward and say we want fully guaranteed contracts to you know, that would change the game a little bit. But if it’s just Lamar on an island,
Dennis Koulatsos 29:49
okay, but good luck. Good luck with this panel. I
Luke Jones 29:53
hear you. You could I hear you.
Dennis Koulatsos 29:56
Yeah. You know, and I hear what I’m saying to you is they can ask for what Ever but Mike Brown and Dean Spanner they’re gonna dig their heels in because they just don’t want to pay. They may not even have that kind of money to pay.
Luke Jones 30:07
Sure, sure. So you know, so but if you’re looking at it from the player’s perspective and the NFLPA perspective, that’s where I look at this and say, you know, I’ve said this over and over, Lamar, what he’s done, the success he’s had the games that the Ravens have won, even with the injuries the last couple years, that would not scare me away from doing what the Ravens have done, which is give him a fair, conventional traditional market value kind of offer. It’s saying that we’re not going to follow this, what you call precedent by the Cleveland Browns who have been one of the absolute worst teams and professional American sports over the last 25 years. But if we’re gonna put that aside, we’ll give Lamar, you know, the highest amount of fully guaranteed money at signing, that’s when scaring me scare me away. But the full guarantee with some of the variables I just laid out about Lamar and the reality of where he’s been the last couple years physically, then yeah, I’m, I’m not I don’t blame the Ravens for wanting to eagerly jump into a contract like that. So we’ll see how it plays out. And maybe maybe it ends up the compromises. Three fully guaranteed years or something like that. I don’t know. But until there’s some compromising going on, and it feels like, maybe it’s gonna have to be from tomorrow. And if he’s just going to keep asking for the Watson guarantee. I mean, I just don’t think they’re gonna get anywhere. But if it does come down to Lamar saying, You know what, I’m not going to sign for 133, fully guaranteed at signing, but if you give me 160, fully guaranteed at signing, yeah, maybe that’ll ultimately be what the compromise is where then both sides can save a little bit of face compared to what the reported offer was that what Chris Mortensen had back in September from ESPN. So, but we’re speculating here, right. I mean, I think what’s been what’s been so frustrating about this process is, there’s been so much more speculation than substance. And, you know, the media is guilty of that. Certainly, I’ve tried to not speculate too much, or, you know, try to put words into tomorrow’s mouth or the ravens, you know, but at the same time, we talk about it, and this is what we do, you know, it’s, it’s an entertainment business at the end of the day. And this is a very, whether it’s entertaining at this point, or more exhausting, which I think it’s more the latter. But it’s very important. You know, there’s nothing more important to the future, the Baltimore Ravens right now, then what happens with Lamar Jackson, whether he stays here, or whether it’s ultimately a trade, and you’re talking about the most valuable asset that the Ravens have ever had to move in a trade, or, you know, the the offer sheet, however, you want to, you know, the semantics of it aside. So, you’ve got to get this right, one way or the other. And that’s what’s, that’s the unsettling part right now. Because, again, what exactly constitutes a win for the Ravens? Knowing that even if he sticks around for one more season, and we’re talking about this again next year, you know, is there a way to make it that the sides are happy, and that you can try to maximize your chance to win this year? I don’t know. And that’s what makes this whole thing so sticky, and, quite frankly, uncomfortable at this point.
Dennis Koulatsos 33:25
Well, I think the NFLPA would be wise to push for guaranteed contract with Joe burrow over Lamar Jackson. borough hadn’t had an MVP season, but he was hurt as his rookie year loses a Super Bowl loses an AFC Championship game. So his body of work had been better in a shorter timeframe, the Lamar Jackson so I think you’ll find the the Players Association. If I’m going to push for guaranteed contract, it would be burl over over Lamar Jackson.
Luke Jones 33:54
I mean, it goes back to what I said. I think it’s got to be multiple quarterbacks. I mean, I think it just has to be like we’re, you know, kind of the we’re arm and arm here. And we’re demanding this and your point about the Brown family and and Spanos is well taken, although at the end of the day, I also do question if some of the, you know, even the owners on the lower end are truly as cash poor as they make it out to be or is that a convenient excuse to continue to dig your heels in on the idea of a fully guaranteed deal? I don’t know. You know, again, it’s these are talking points. We don’t know ultimately. But if the NFLPA truly wants to get that done, gotta be more than just Lamar Jackson pushing for it. To me, that’s where it comes into. You know, you put out a joint statement of Mr. Joe burrow, Justin Herbert and I’m not saying it would be successful but I think it’d be I’d have a much better chance of being successful than where it lies right now with Lamar now as we continue this, this hurry up and wait kind of feeling where you know, we’re just kind of look into the next checkpoint say, Okay, the first wave of free agency, the second wave of free agency, the third wave of free agency is over. Now The draft, I guess, you know, is there gonna be, you know, hypothetically, is there a team that after the draft, maybe they don’t get their quarterback or, you know, some something doesn’t happen with their roster the way they plan it to and that they’re gonna pivot? I don’t know, again, I, there’s so so much cap space and the structure of an offer sheet that you would have to do other than just saying, yeah, we’ll give them ours full guarantee no problem. If a team does that, then then we’re talking. But if it’s a case where a team’s offering way more than the ravens, and they structured in a way to make it difficult for the ravens to match, I don’t know, the more time goes on as far as getting deeper into this offseason I just find that to be less likely because the salary cap, contrary to what some will tell you, it does exist. Yeah, there are ways to manipulate it. But you still have to pay the piper at some point in time. And when you’re talking about a fully guaranteed deal. We’ve already seen it with Cleveland with with restructures. And, and what they’re gonna do with, with Watson, I think it’s very evident with how they’re structuring things. And look, they’ve made moves, but they’re kind of in a position where if they don’t win this year, or next year, then I think you can kind of forget it for them. And And that’s assuming that Deshaun Watson goes back to plan like he did in Houston and not the guy we saw late last year, which wasn’t anything special, that’s for sure.
Dennis Koulatsos 36:17
Look, it’s been a lot of noise the last few years, and unfortunately, it continues to be so until further notice. He said she said they said they’re thinking is he thinking that they’re doing this he doing that they’re all posturing, but until further notice. It’s exhausting, more than exhilarating, as you said. But it remains noise until noise to me until further notice.
Luke Jones 36:37
It is it is and that’s I’m glad you mentioned that because I see a lot of frustration. Obviously, I’m on Twitter a lot, right? And people were on Facebook and you see so much frustration and I saw a lot of people fans reacting harshly to what what the PFT report was the other day in terms of lumbars camp telling teams he’s ready to move on which again, I already said that’s negotiating one to one right that whether he’s actually Ready or not, is another story but taking that at face value. Go outside and enjoy. You know, It’s spring now. There’s lacrosse, Orioles baseball is a week away. You know, we’re we’re a week out from opening day or less than a week out from opening day in the NCAA tournament. I mean, boy, the first two rounds were fantastic. You’ve got the NBA and playoffs coming up, you got the Stanley Cup playoffs coming on. There’s plenty going on. And my point with that is it’s a lot of what you just said, you know, kind of ignore the noise. Exhale. I don’t think I don’t think I don’t know this, but I don’t think we’re going to have a resolution to this today or tomorrow or even next week. So there is there are other things going on the Baltimore Ravens will not cease to exist, Lamar Jackson will not cease to exist. However this plays out. So try to find some other things to enjoy in the sports world. I mean, my goodness Otani against Mike Trout in the World Baseball Classic the other night was one of my all time as far as just a single dream matchup kind of scenario. One of the best things I’ve seen in my lifetime watching sports, you know, just a one on one individual matchup that was fantastic. So don’t you know, make sure don’t let this consume all of your energy as a sports fan. Because, you know, at the end of the day, it is business and that’s where they are right now. And it’s, you know, it’s bordering on maybe getting a little uglier than it’s been to this point. But you know, what’s the what’s the expression to make an omelet, sometimes you gotta break some eggs. And and that’s kind of where they’re at at this point. I think that’s where, you know, that’s, that was kind of some of the thinking as far as the Ravens putting the nonexclusive tag on Lamar, that, hey, Lamar, you think you’re worth this go out and try to get it and to this point, still very early, but to this point, it looks like the Ravens may have been correct about that. Now, Lamar Jackson may not come around to that line of thinking anytime soon. And I can’t say I necessarily blame him in terms of, he’s going to try to wait it out. But the point is, settle in. And as I also wrote, you need to get comfortable with the idea of being uncomfortable as it pertains to Lamar and the Ravens right now, because I just you know, I don’t know if we’re gonna see a very quick resolution here. But hey, I guess Stranger things have happened. So you never know. That’s why it’s important to be on the WNS. C Baltimore positive tech service sponsored by coons for the Baltimore How would you like that
Dennis Koulatsos 39:30
plug Dennis love almost gave that plug got up like three minutes ago but I tell you what, Lamar Jackson that gets a contract the offer from the ravens to his liking. At the press conference, you can bet your bottom dollar he’ll be saying hey, this is the greatest organization in the world. I love your I love the ownership. I love the cost. I love my teammates. I love the fans are the greatest city in the history of the world. That’s what they’ll say at the pressure and everything will be forgot forgotten and forgiven. It really would. And everybody
Luke Jones 39:59
Yeah, All right. And that’s a point that I’ve I’ve made with Nestor, you know, with us to debating this where, you know, I mean, he’s, you know, he’s been more of the thought that they’re gonna move on from him and trade him. And I just, I think, all of these contract standoffs whether you’re talking about this one, I think back to Ray Lewis in the early offseason of 2009, you know, any number of players playing on the tag over the years, I mean, the Ravens tag guys, multiple years, you know, Suggs, Chris McAllister was tagged twice. You know, I think there’s a tendency to kind of forget that it can get ugly, it can get contentious in the moment. But if you do get the deal, hate that. Whatever the ultimate guaranteed money is, that as a way of making people forget about the things you were mad about, and don’t forget, if there is a press conference, you’ll you’ll also hear levar say it wasn’t about the money, right? So horse, so you know, but of course, we’ll see how it plays out. And there are also times where you don’t work it out. And sometimes there is the proverbial divorce and we’ll see how this plays out ultimately, but again, it’s plenty else going on, David, I didn’t even mention WrestleMania coming up here in a couple of weeks as well. So looking forward to that.
Dennis Koulatsos 41:16
Besides the Lamar Jackson saga, look, as long as I appreciate your time, your thoughtfulness and your insight, please tell our listeners where they can find you social media, all that great stuff you do for adult yet to see Baltimore positive as well as your blog.
Luke Jones 41:29
Absolutely. I encourage everyone to follow us on Twitter at wn S T can follow me personally at Baltimore Luke as I mentioned, opening day right around the corner Orioles home opener on April 6 they’ll be out at the ballpark watched in the Orioles as they convene with the 2023 season. Check out my blog at Baltimore positive.com sponsored by coons for to Baltimore. The latest on the Ravens Lamar Jackson 12 ravens thoughts I’ll have Orioles content mixed in there as we’re getting closer and closer to the start the 2023 campaign. You want to be on the wn St. Baltimore positive tech service sponsored by Coons, Florida Baltimore, as I already mentioned, if it is news about a Lamar Jackson contract or Lamar Jackson trade, ravens outside free agent signing Marcus Peters resigning any of those possibilities. Any significant local sports news sent directly to your mobile device via the wn St. Baltimore positive tech service sponsored by Cummins, Florida, Baltimore and of course, anything throughout the week on AM 15 Seven eat with Nestor, any ravens press conferences coming up? A sound from the ballpark? Orioles, players, coaches manager Brandon Hyde. Check out all of that in the coming weeks at poltimore positive.com.
Dennis Koulatsos 42:39
All right, my friend I appreciate you and next week like Fox on WrestleMania we’ll put that on the calendar. How about that sounds
Luke Jones 42:44
good. Hey, the bloodline Roman Reigns against Cody Rhodes the bloodline a two year long storyline one of the best long term stories I’ve seen in the history of professional wrestling. I don’t say that lightly eating a lot. One of the better stories I’ve seen right around the corner WrestleMania Yeah, it’s been fun. Well, we’ll talk a little bit about that. Yeah, that
Dennis Koulatsos 43:05
sounds good. I appreciate my friend stay well keep doing great things.
Luke Jones 43:09
Thanks Dennis. Be well man.
Dennis Koulatsos 43:10
Thank you sir. There you go. Look challenge our very own Luke Jones here in 1570 Am WNYC we’ll take a break and come back right after this.