With Lamar Jackson receiving the non-exclusive franchise tag from the Baltimore Ravens, the Indianapolis Colts could try acquiring the quarterback.
On Tuesday, the Baltimore Ravens franchise-tagged Lamar Jackson. After not being able to negotiate a long-term contract, the Ravens used the tag to keep Jackson from becoming a free agent. However, Baltimore decided to use the non-exclusive franchise tag. By doing that, the Ravens can pay him less than if they exclusively franchise-tagged him but they are at risk of losing Lamar Jackson this offseason.
Since the franchise tag is the non-exclexclusive version, Jackson can talk with other teams and negotiate contracts. If another team is willing to offer Jackson a contract that he accepts, the Ravens will have the opportunity to match the offer or allow Jackson to join the other team and receive two first-round picks from Jackson’s new team.
With that now being possible, the NFL world has already started speculating about what teams will go after Lamar Jackson. He’s one of the best quarterbacks in the league, so surely he will have a lot of suitors, even if it costs teams two first-round picks and a lot of money. However, to the surprise of many, a lot of the suspected teams are reportedly not going to pursue Jackson.
The Indianapolis Colts may be one of the teams interested in Lamar Jackson. But, Indy is right in the mix to select one of the top quarterbacks in the 2023 NFL Draft. Should the Colts abandon the path of drafting a QB and go all in on acquiring Lamar Jackson? Absolutely.
Colts should absolutely go after Lamar Jackson
The only argument against Indianapolis acquiring Jackson is the contract difference between what Jackson will likely be paid and the salary for a rookie quarterback. Aside from that, there’s very little reason for the Colts to gamble on the draft instead of acquiring Lamar Jackson.
To acquire Jackson, Indianapolis would have to send the Ravens two first-round picks; that’s really a discount for a player of Jackson’s caliber. Additionally, that’s also the reported asking price of the Chicago Bears for the No. 1 overall pick in the 2023 Draft. If the Colts plan on trading up, it could cost them two first-round picks. If Indianapolis is going to use two firsts to get a quarterback, why not use the picks to get an MVP-caliber quarterback that has already established himself as a top player in the NFL?
Sure, the quarterbacks in this upcoming draft class are very promising and could go on to be very great professionals. Additionally, it’s always great for a team to have a rookie-quarterback contract. However, the NFL Draft is all a gamble. Sitting at No. 4, there’s no guarantee Indy even gets one of the top three QBs in this class. Even if Indianapolis does get one of the top guys, there’s no guarantee that the player pans out. Lamar Jackson is the only sure thing in this equation.
Every team that drafts a quarterback is hoping that the QB can develop into a player with the impact of Lamar Jackson. That’s what the Colts will be hoping if they do ultimately select a QB this year. Indianapolis doesn’t have to hope, it can just go after the real LamarJackson.
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