Skip navigation
Sign up to follow your favorites on all your devices.
Sign up

Colts haven’t ruled out a run at Lamar Jackson

Mike Florio and Chris Simms examine the Panthers’ approach to prioritize their draft picks rather than making a run at Lamar Jackson, who G.M. Scott Fitterer described as “a great and expensive option.”

The team that secretly absconded from Baltimore nearly 39 years ago to the day could be, in theory, days a way from publicly trying to pilfer Baltimore’s current quarterback.

Stephen Holder of reports that the Colts haven’t ruled out a pursuit of Ravens quarterback Lamar Jackson.

Jackson is limited by the non-exclusive franchise tag, which the Ravens applied two weeks ago to the 2019 NFL MVP.

2019. That’s the year the Colts were thrown into a tailspin by the sudden and unexpected retirement of Andrew Luck. The Colts still haven’t fully recovered.

Although a run at Jackson remain possible for the Colts, the team “has not taken any substantive steps regarding Jackson,” per Holder. According to the report, “team sources have expressed skepticism” about an attempt to woo Jackson.

It’s a delicate situation. Jackson has wanted a fully-guaranteed contract. There are recent indications that maybe he doesn’t want every dollar to be fully-guaranteed at signing. If so, he still wants a significant amount to be fully-guaranteed at signing, possibly $200 million or more.

Then there’s the possibility that the Ravens will simply match the terms of whatever offer sheet the Colts may persuade Jackson to sign. Or, if the Ravens don’t match, the Colts would be surrendering the very valuable fourth overall selection in the draft.

Of course, the Colts could also wait until after the draft, giving up their 2024 and 2025 first-round picks if the Ravens don’t match. That strategy would likely make the Ravens more determined to match, however.

The situation has plenty of factors to consider. In the end, the Colts may prefer starting from scratch with a rookie who would become the team’s long-term franchise quarterback -- like Peyton Manning was and like Luck was supposed to be.

But every rookie quarterback is unproven. Lamar has shown what he can do. Which is why any team without a short-list, top-five franchise quarterback should at least be thinking about it.