Baltimore Ravens quarterback Lamar Jackson dropped a bombshell on his Twitter account on Monday morning by revealing that he had requested a trade from the organization earlier in the month. The Ravens placed a $32.426 million non-exclusive franchise tag on Jackson and will have until July 17 to offer the QB a multi-year extension before that number becomes permanent.
While Jackson has now made public his desire to leave Baltimore in the midst of this ongoing contract dispute, there is no guarantee that the Ravens will honor that request prior to the 2023 season. Still, there are several teams who have plenty to gain by acquiring the former NFL MVP and we’ll go over a few potential trade destinations below.
The Falcons were one of the teams that publicly announced that they would not pursue Jackson earlier in the month. Well, nothing is finite and they’d benefit from walking that statement back.
Atlanta is undergoing a rebuild and is currently in need of a franchise quarterback. Jackson would fit that mold and then some, immediately vaulting the team to the top of the NFC South. On top of that, the Falcons currently have the seventh-most cap space in the NFL per Over The Cap, so they’d have some flexibility in crafting a new, guaranteed contract for Jackson. They’d still need to add pieces around the dynamic QB, but Drake London and Kyle Pitts are good building blocks to start with.
Similar to their NFC South rival in Atlanta, the Panthers are in rebuild mode ad priority No. 1 is settling their situation under center. And once again, Jackson would be exactly what they are looking for.
Carolina is currently equipped with the No. 1 overall pick in this year’s draft and that would be a heck of a trade chip if the Ravens themselves wanted to start over with someone like Bryce Young or CJ Stroud. The team also has the second-most cap space in the league and would be geared to signing Jackson long-term if they wanted to. A problem here is that the Panthers already gave up tons of draft capital to the Bears for the top spot in this year’s draft and a trade with the Ravens would deplete it for the next few years. But it’s Lamar Jackson. He’s worth the risk.
Detroit has trended up since the arrival of head coach Dan Campbell in 2021 and came up just short of the playoffs this past season. The Lions have made smart moves in both free agency and the draft for the past couple of seasons and still have plenty of cap space to play with.
They have a roster primed for a breakthrough and Jackson would immediately vault them into the NFC’s elite. The former MVP would provide an immediate upgrade over Jared Goff, who himself has done a nice job with the organization for the past two years. With Aaron Rodgers finally leaving the NFC North, the division would be right there for Detroit to take with Jackson at the helm.