Star quarterback Lamar Jackson and the Baltimore Ravens have agreed to a five-year extension, the team announced on Thursday, just prior to the NFL Draft. According to CBS Sports NFL insider Josina Anderson, the deal is worth a $260 million, with $185 million of that guaranteed.
The contract averages out to about $52 million per season, making Jackson the highest paid player in the NFL by average annual salary, Anderson reported. However, the guaranteed portion of the contract is well under the $230 million Cleveland Browns quarterback Deshaun Watson received last summer.
Jackson expressed excitement about the extension in an official announcement video posted on the team's Twitter account.
"For the last few months, there's been a lot of he said, she said, a lot of nail-biting, a lot of head scratching going on," Jackson said. "But for the next five years, it's a lot of flock going on. Let's go, baby. Let's go."
According to the team, negotiations have been ongoing for about two years. Eric DeCosta, Ravens general manager, called the agreement to secure Jackson's deal a "long, long process, but family is never easy."
Earlier this offseason, the Ravens had put Jackson on a non-exclusive franchise tag, giving him the ability to sign a deal with another team that the Ravens would then have been able to match. It led to speculation that Baltimore might be prepared to part ways with their franchise quarterback — the 2019 league MVP.
Earlier this month, the Philadelphia Eaglesa five-year, $255 million deal with quarterback Jalen Hurts, which before Jackson's deal, had been the highest by average annual salary in the league. That deal had about $180 million guaranteed.
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