The Baltimore Ravens’ offseason gameplan doesn’t start until something is done about their quarterback situation, specifically whether a long-term deal will be reached with Lamar Jackson.
Tight end Mark Andrews, who has been Jackson’s favorite target since they both landed in Baltimore in 2018, saw the Louisville product win MVP in just his second year in the NFL and become a leader in the locker room since then.
That’s why he’s confident the Ravens should extend Jackson, knowing he can be their franchise quarterback for years to come.
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“To me, I know who Lamar is as a person. That’s the most important thing,” Andrews told Fox News Digital, while highlighting USAA’s and the 101st Airborne Division Association’s surprise of Super Bowl LVII tickets to a 12-year military veteran. “He’s an incredible friend, an incredible person. Someone that’s awesome to have around, and especially as a quarterback, he’s incredible. He’s a special player. Those type of guys don’t come around very often.”
During appearances on Radio Row at Super Bowl LVII in Arizona, Andrews has answered the Jackson question a lot, and his comments here echo what he’s been saying about Jackson.
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“I think Lamar is a Raven for life,” he said with NBC's Pro Football Talk. “I know that the organization wants Lamar, and I know that he has a lot of respect for the organization as well. I think both parties want to get this deal done; it's just about doing it.”
Andrews even mentioned that he would give up his paycheck to keep Jackson on board.
Both parties were unable to reach an agreement before the start of the 2022 season, and Jackson didn’t want that to bleed into the year, so talks ended. GM Eric DeCosta said, despite no agreement, it was positive that both sides were engaged. Even head coach John Harbaugh said he expects Jackson to be the Ravens’ quarterback “for a long time,” showing his commitment to getting a deal done down the road.
Baltimore can also use the franchise tag on Jackson if they need to, but that may not sit well with him.
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The Ravens also need to add a new offensive coordinator, and frankly, some more weapons for Jackson to work with alongside Andrews. A new coordinator could also be the jolt to a Ravens offense that struggled at times this past season.
“Football can be so different, and a lot of things can change. I’m very excited to see where that goes, and it could look like a lot of things. I think there’s a lot of right ways to play football,” Andrews said.
But there’s only one Jackson in the NFL, and Andrews is hoping he will still be throwing him passes for years to come.
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Andrews signed a four-year extension worth $56 million that won’t have him hit free agency until the 2026 season.