Lamar Jackson couldn't be happier for Patrick Mahomes after the Kansas City Chiefs quarterback signed a record-setting 10-year, $503 million deal last year -- making the former MVP the highest-paid athlete in American sports history.
If Jackson can replicate the career path Mahomes has taken through three seasons with a Super Bowl title and game MVP honors in Year 3, the current NFL MVP is staring down a contract that may be even better than the one Mahomes just received.
That's not on Jackson's mind at the moment. The money will come with success on the field.
"I got to win me a Super Bowl," Jackson said in an interview with ESPN on Monday night, per Yardbarker. "I got to get what he has."
Mahomes certainly has earned every penny of his incredible contract. The Chiefs quarterback has thrown for 9,128 yards and 76 touchdowns against just 18 interceptions in his two full seasons as a starting quarterback (109.6 passer rating). He threw for 5,097 yards and 50 touchdowns in his MVP season of 2018 and completed 65.9% of his passes for 4,031 yards and 26 touchdowns to just five interceptions (105.3 rating) while playing the majority of 2019 with a knee injury.
In the playoffs, Mahomes threw for 901 yards with 10 touchdowns to just two interceptions (111.5 rating) and earned Super Bowl MVP honors, leading Kansas City to its first Super Bowl title in 50 years. Two full seasons as a starting quarterback resulted in a league MVP in Year 1 and a Super Bowl MVP in Year 2.
"No one has ever dreamed about that. Probably dreamed about it, but no one ever expected that," Jackson said about Mahomes. "Half a billion dollars. That's different. But he deserves it. He deserves it."
Jackson is on the same career path as Mahomes based on his success in his first full season as a starting quarterback. Jackson became the first quarterback to throw for over 3,000 yards and rush for over 1,000 yards in a single season. He also had the most rushing yards by a QB in a season in NFL history (1,206), leading the league with 6.9 yards per carry and finishing with seven touchdowns. He completed 66.1% of his passes for 3,127 yards, 36 touchdowns and six interceptions for a 113.3 passer rating. Jackson led the NFL in touchdown passes and touchdown percentage (9.0), while his 43 total touchdowns led the league.
Jackson was the AFC Offensive Player of the Week five times and was the AFC's Offensive Player of the Month in November of last year. In the final eight games he played in the regular season, Jackson completed 69.4% of his passes for 1,477 yards and 25 touchdowns to just one interception. He also had 630 rushing yards and four rushing touchdowns.
If Jackson puts up impressive numbers once again and, more importantly, takes the Baltimore Ravens to a Super Bowl title this season, his huge payday will come. Mahomes set the standard for Jackson to match, making a Super Bowl title even more critical toward his financial future.