The Baltimore Ravens lost a heartbreaking wild-card game Sunday night against the division rival Cincinnati Bengals, which not only means their season is over, but also means quarterback Lamar Jackson's offseason has begun. Whether Jackson will be back in Baltimore next year -- and if he does stay, what the price will be -- are major storylines heading into the 2023 season.
Whenever a player's status is uncertain, everything they say, do and post gets hyper-analyzed and put under a microscope. Just one day after the Ravens' season-ending defeat, we already have a social media message to decrypt, with Jackson posting the following on his Instagram story:
"When you have something good, you don't play with it. You don't take chances losing it. You don't neglect it. When you have something good, you pour into it. You appreciate it. Because when you take care of something good, that good thing takes care of you too."
What exactly he means by this, and if it gives any hints into what he is thinking as he heads into further negotiations with the Ravens, is up for interpretation.
Jackson is recovering from a PCL injury, which he called a grade 2 sprain in a Twitter post on Thursday updating his recovery status. The 26-year-old did not travel with the team for its playoff game against its AFC North foes after ruling himself out in the social media post, another move that people have overanalyzed.
Guaranteed money is reportedly what has prevented a deal from already happening between the Ravens and their two-time Pro Bowl quarterback. This summer, he reportedly turned down a six-year deal that included $133 million guaranteed. A franchise tag is still a likely option.