We have been looking at some of the winners and losers from the 2023 NFL draft, but it is impossible to go too far without saying that the biggest winner is Lamar Jackson. Sure, it is easy to say that because he did not eclipse the DeShaun Watson contract with the Baltimore Ravens he did not win.
Lamar Jackson is Baltimore Ravens biggest winner
Still, Jackson was able to ink a long-term deal with the deal, and now he is signed for five seasons. The deal did top Jalen Hurts and is second to only Watson in fully guaranteed dollars. It is easy to say the deal getting done is enough, but the Ravens did far more than that.
First, the decision to move on from Greg Roman was a tough, but smart one. With Roman, he was perfect for a younger Jackson, but Jackson has improved as a passer and it is time for the offense to show that. Now that Jackson is signed the team is expecting him to open up the offense, and that is why Todd Monken was the perfect hire.
He had an air raid attack as offensive coordinator of the Buccaneers back in 2018, but he also was a ground-and-pound team with Georgia. He used multiple wide receivers with Tampa Bay and multiple tight ends with Georgia. He is a versatile mind who brings more to the table than an offense that suits a mobile quarterback.
To have a versatile offense the team needed to start finding some versatile weapons. First, the Ravens signed Nelson Agholor, and fans thought it would be just another offseason with this front office.
Then, they added Odell Beckham. This move was significant because it showed that they are willing to give a little for Lamar Jackson and also that they are all in on improving this room. Then, they added Zay Flowers, who has been working out with Jackson already.
So, Jackson did not get the deal that exceeds DeShaun Watson but he did get the second largest contract, bigger than Jalen Hurts, and on top of that, the team gave him Beckham, and Flowers, two players he eagerly wanted.
The offseason was tilting back and forth for Jackson early on, but it could not have ended better, and he could not be more excited for next season.