Good Wednesday to you Steelers fans.
Remember several years ago when the Baltimore Ravens gave Joe Flacco the highest QB contract in the league? Since then, the quarterback market has gone completely off the rails. Huge contracts were once reserved for the very best of the best, the elite, in other words. Yesterday, the New York Giants signed Daniel Jones to a four-year $160 million contract with $82 million guaranteed. If you’re like me and you suck at math… figuring… figuring… figuring… that’s $40 million per season. Jones had a very nice season under first-year head coach Brian Daboll but $40 million??? Thank the Ravens. Out in Seattle, Geno Smith was also rewarded with a new deal. After a really nice season for the Seahawks he was rewarded with a three-year deal worth $105 million. Midway through the season, Smith was one of the higher rated QBs but he fell off drastically in the second half of the year. For that kind of money however we can “thank the Ravens.” Lastly, Baltimore has its own quarterback mess. They slapped the Non-Exclusive tag on Lamar Jackson. This means other teams can negotiate with Jackson and offer him a contract. The Ravens can match the contract or let Jackson go and receive two first round picks. The one-time MVP has reportedly asked for a guaranteed deal worth more than Deshaun Watson’s and he has every right to considering he’s accomplished far more. But now, the Ravens know damn well the asking price has gone up and in my opinion they are prepared to move on. They seem very unwilling to be bogged down by a massive QB deal. They have only themselves to blame.
Tweet of the Day… I ran this poll on the Twitter this week. I’m not surprised at all.
With Jalen Carter reportedly falling out of the Top 10 how would you feel if the #Steelers drafted him?
— SteelCityBlitz (@SCBlitz) March 7, 2023
So Let’s Talk Lamar
I have to admit, it was very curious yesterday that within minutes of the Ravens announcing their intention to ‘tag’ Lamar Jackson, five teams immediately made statements. The Commanders, Panthers, Falcons, Dolphins and Raiders all issued statements through the media that they would not be pursuing Jackson. As some would expect, this elicited some strong responses about this being centered on the issue of race. I don’t get into telling others how to feel, but I think this is much more about price, cost and what I’m getting out of it. Jackson was an MVP in this League – few can say that – and his win/loss record is outstanding (45-16). That said, he’s 1-3 in the postseason where has three TD passes, five interceptions and a completion percentage of 56%. He’s also missed an incredible amount of time in recent seasons (14 games in the last 2 seasons and a playoff game) and perhaps most importantly, the Baltimore Ravens are not stupid. They may be our sworn enemy but unlike the rivalries with Cleveland and Cincinnati, there is much respect between our two organizations and fan bases. Ozzie Newsome and John Harbaugh weren’t born yesterday. They see all over the League what happens to teams that pay massive contracts to quarterbacks. These teams become strained against the cap, they have to send other very good players packing because they can’t afford them and in turn, the team struggles. Are there exceptions? Sure there are, but not many. On the flipside, those five teams I mentioned would have to do two things that are not easy. First, they would have to pay out a massive contract with a ton of guaranteed money. Second, they would also forfeit two first round draft picks. It’s not that Jackson isn’t worth that value but it’s still a big sacrifice to any team.
Don’t Be Surprised If…
Chase Winovich signs with the Steelers. If you go back to the pre-draft process four years ago, they spent a ton of time with him. In part, to gain information on Devin Bush but also because they really liked him. He would provide OLB depth and would be a core Special Teamer immediately… The Steelers do NOT draft Jordan Addison. Many of you want this to happen but my gut tells me they’ll go in a different direction… They draft a tight end. This class is LOADED with quality tight ends of differing varieties and if they can’t bring Zach Gentry. They have to have a guy who can block… You see the Steelers start re-structuring a bunch of deals. Minkah Fitzpatrick for starters. They can open up quite a bit of cap space this way.
We’ve started our NFL Draft Coverage here at SCB and the first of our Position Profiles is out. We’ve made the decision that rather than make extensive profiles of each player, we are doing smaller ones and grouping them by position. This allows us to easier update information as Pro Days and the Combine provide more info.
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