Saturday, September 24, 2022

Buccaneers Insider addresses speculation surrounding Lamar Jackson

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The Tampa Bay Buccaneers may be looking for a new quarterback for the 2023 season.

While Tom Brady continues to lead the Buccaneers into the 2022 season, there’s no guarantee the 45-year-old quarterback will return for a 24th season next year. Without signing the seven-time Super Bowl champion, Brady’s departure could force Tampa Bay to look for a new franchise quarterback.

Some have speculated that Baltimore Ravens quarterback Lamar Jackson could be a possible option for the Buccaneers. However, acc Greg Auman of The Athletica change for Jackson is highly unlikely due to salary cap reasons.

“A lot of wishful thinking about Bucs and Lamar Jackson,” Auman said Sept. 11. “He’s probably still coming back with Baltimore, and if he doesn’t, Bucs is already $44 million over the 2023 cap, which isn’t good with a huge contract.” They could add a QB next year, but not quite as expensive.”

Jackson, 25, is playing out the final year of his contract with the Ravens after Jackson turned down a five-year extension worth over $250 million and $133 million guaranteed.

About ESPN’s Chris Mortensen and Adam Schefter:

“The extension, which ran through the 2027 season, would have brought the total value of Jackson’s deal to nearly $274 million over six years, according to sources. Jackson would have exercised the $23 million fifth-year option on his rookie deal before the 2023 renewal began.”

From perspective, Jackson turned down an offer that earned him a higher annual average than Russell Wilson ($48.5 million, second-highest in the NFL) and Kyler Murray ($46.1 million, third-highest in the NFL). would have both received new deals this off-season.

“The extension years in the Ravens’ proposal would have paid Jackson a higher average salary than the contracts signed by Broncos quarterback Russell Wilson and Cardinals quarterback Kyler Murray this summer, and also guaranteed more money at the signing, according to sources.”

Jackson is easily one of the best quarterbacks in the league. The former NFL MVP — he won it in 2019 as the youngest MVP in NFL history — has a 37-12 record (.755) as a starting quarterback. He is arguably the best dual-threat quarterback in the league, having rushed for consecutive 1,000-yard seasons in the 2019 and 2020 seasons.

While the main reason Jackson didn’t take up the Ravens’ contract offer was the lack of guaranteed money compared to what Deshaun Watson received from the Cleveland Browns ($230 million guaranteed), it’s safe to assume that Jackson will start with his next contract will earn approximately $50 million per season.

The Buccaneers’ current backups are veteran Blaine Gabbert and former second-round draft pick Kyle Trask. Gabbert, 32, previously played as a starting quarterback for the Jacksonville Jaguars and has served largely as a backup since the 2013 season. Gabbert has not started a game since the 2018 season.

Meanwhile, Trask has yet to throw a pass in an NFL regular-season game and hasn’t exactly impressed against backup defensive players in the preseason. The 24-year-old quarterback threw for just one touchdown on 67 pass attempts (1.5 touchdown percentage) for a 76.5 quarterback rating last season.

In other words, when Brady retires, the Buccaneers will definitely be chasing a capable veteran quarterback. However, due to Tampa Bay’s lack of salary caps, it’s unlikely they will end up pursuing Jackson.

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