The Lamar Jackson impact on Ravens free agency could go either way
Will Lamar Jackson have a positive or negative impact on free agency:
Lamar Jackson is going into his first offseason as the starting quarterback and the Ravens have to bring in talent around him. The biggest void on the Ravens roster is the wide receiver position. Is Jackson a deterrent to bringing in free agent wide receivers?
Some receivers may hesitate going to Baltimore to be part of a ground and pound offense with a developing passer. That’s not good for stats and production is what a players value is calculated by. There will obviously be some free agents who look at Baltimore and say no thanks. A player who is looking for a short-term prove it kind of a contract won’t make the Ravens his preferred destination.
Jackson could have the opposite impact on free agency. The Ravens were an overtime loss in Kansas City away from finishing the 2018 season 7-0. The team gelled together and rallied behind Lamar Jackson. Jackson is an exciting player to play with. The beginning of the Jackson era was fun. Jackson’s smile filled enthusiasm sends out good vibes.
The Ravens situation can be painted as a grim situation for wide receivers but that narrative is a little misleading. The Ravens have almost nothing to fall back on when it comes to receivers. They have Willie Snead and Chris Moore holding down the fort. If a good wide receiver comes onto the scene, he’ll be the number one target. The Ravens aren’t going to be a run-only team. Jackson is going to be told to go get it with his arm. Somebody has to catch passes.
A veteran wide receiver could be excited about working with Jackson. A player with just one or two contracts left in his career isn’t going to be as concerned with his statistics. He’s going to want to win and possibly be part of something special. The Ravens have only had one losing season under John Harbaugh and just won the AFC North in 2018. Being the go to guy for an up and coming quarterback, starting a brand new offense and winning are the three biggest selling points for DeCosta and company.
For offensive linemen the Ravens have to be an appealing situation. The Ravens figure to be a run first team, and signing with the Ravens is an invitation to be a bully on the football field. Running backs have to be intrigued by the situation. Gus Edwards and Kenneth Dixon are entering a season where they have to prove it. A workhorse running back could come into Baltimore and become the main attraction of the offense along with Jackson.
It really depends on the player. Jackson may be a reason for some players to go elsewhere and he could be a main attraction for the Ravens as well. With any luck, the players that Baltimore targets will be excited to play with Jackson