This summer, some NFL players have already vented their frustration and are actively seeking a trade like Cleveland Browns’ Kareem Hunt. For other players whose emotions may be simmering but nearing a boil, they may be unhappy with their current situation and may be quietly looking for a fresh start elsewhere.
Cincinnati Bengals safety Jessie Bates comes to mind after his whole franchise tag saga, but Lamar Jackson could also be pegged as a disgruntled star given his ongoing contract stalemate.
Could Jackson really leave Baltimore?
Bleacher Report’s Alex Kay listed five NFL stars who could request a trade and had Jackson yearning for a change of scenery:
"“The Baltimore Ravens are playing with fire, as they still have yet to sign quarterback Lamar Jackson to a long-term contract extension. While talks are ongoing between the two sides, they might not reach an agreement anytime soon.Jackson currently isn’t holding out, but he could become disgruntled with the Ravens during the negotiation process. They should aim to avoid that by coming to terms with him on a new contract as soon as possible.”"
Don’t expect the Ravens to trade Lamar Jackson…obviously
While it’s true that Jackson has yet to sign a long-term contract extension, a plethora of factors are at play here. For one, Jackson can still play on his fifth-year option in 2022 and won’t have to ink a new deal until next offseason. Even then, the franchise tag remains a viable option.
It’s a high-stakes situation, but waiting on a new deal also benefits Jackson as he bets on the inflating quarterback market and continues to up his stock.
Jackson himself doesn’t appear too bothered by the situation and hasn’t staged a holdout, which bodes well for Baltimore. He did say he was hoping to get a new contract by Week 1 — if not, he’ll drop the contract talk for the 2022 season and focus on football instead.
Still, nothing out of Ravens camp has remotely suggested that Jackson wants to leave Baltimore. If Jackson still hasn’t signed a contract by next March, then all this speculation may hold some merit.
Table the Lamar Jackson trade talks for later. The Ravens’ franchise quarterback isn’t going anywhere anytime soon.