While there is still time to reach a common ground in contract negotiations, the Baltimore Ravens and Lamar Jackson appear to be headed for a split.
The fifth-year quarterback took to social media on Monday — just minutes after head coach John Harbaugh started his press conference at the NFL ownership meeting in Phoenix — to make public that he had requested a trade on March 2. Five days later, Baltimore placed the non-exclusive franchise tag on Jackson.
The series of tweets titled “A Letter to my Fans” sounds like a goodbye more than anything else (the text was slightly edited):
I want to first thank you all for all of the love and support you consistently show towards me. All of you are amazing and I appreciate y’all so much. I want you all to know not to believe everything you read about me. Let me personally answer your questions in regards to my future plans. As of March 2nd I requested a trade from the Ravens organization for which the Ravens has not been interested in meeting my value, any and everyone that has met me or been around me know I love the game of football and my dream is to help a team win the Super Bowl. You all are great but I had to make a business decision that was best for my family and I. No matter how far I go or where my career takes me, I’ll continue to be close to my fans of Baltimore Flock Nation and the entire State of Maryland. You’ll see me again.
Jackson is looking for a long-term contract, but the Ravens have so far not met his asking price. With him under the non-exclusive franchise tag, he is free to negotiate with other teams even though no talks have happened just yet.