Yahoo Sports’ Charles Robinson and Frank Schwab discuss the contract situation for the electrifying quarterbacks of the Baltimore Ravens and Arizona Cardinals. Will they secure the bag before the 2022 season kick off? Hear the full conversation on the You Pod to Win the Game podcast. Subscribe on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Stitcher or wherever you listen.
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CHARLES ROBINSON: What's going to happen with the Lamar Jackson and Kyler Murray contracts? Go ahead. You go first because I have thoughts on this.
FRANK SCHWAB: [DEEP BREATH] I have to separate what I think should happen versus what will happen. I don't know that I'd pay either one of these guys. And I like both of them.
CHARLES ROBINSON: Ooh, yeah.
FRANK SCHWAB: I don't know. I just wonder if Lamar is going to age like a running back, like Cam did. That's just-- he's a different player. He's unique. He's unlike anything-- we can't assume that he's going to be Aaron Rodgers still balling at 38 years old. And--
CHARLES ROBINSON: Right.
FRANK SCHWAB: --I don't know if the second contract's going to be worth it for him. That's not an indictment of him as a player. Love him as a player. You can go back. I've written often that I think he's a heck of a football player.
And they could win with him. And this nonsense that they can't win in the playoffs with him is just-- it is just nonsense. He just hasn't done it yet. They can't do it. But I don't know that-- how much money is he going to command? And--
CHARLES ROBINSON: Right.
FRANK SCHWAB: --all of a sudden, it makes it a lot tougher to build a championship team around him. So I don't know that I'd necessarily-- I'd pay Lamar. Kyler's a little bit different for me in that I don't know how good he is.
I think he's good. But he's-- again, once you start paying these quarterbacks, it's a big price tag. And I think the worst place for an NFL team to be is in the middle of the road a quarterback. If you have a great quarterback, you pay him, and you don't think twice about it.
CHARLES ROBINSON: Right.
FRANK SCHWAB: Whatever it costs, that's fine. If you have a bad quarterback, dump him. We're on to the next one.
If you're right in the middle, we're going to pay Kyler Murray $40 million, or $35, or whatever it's going to be without knowing if he's great? I don't know if that's the way to go. But teams get so worried about what's next.
And it's because coaches and GMs don't have the time to go through a quarterback change. So they're probably going to end up paying Kyler what he wants. And it probably is going to be a bad idea. I don't know if he's going to live up to that contract.
So I'm interested to see what you have to say. What do I think will happen? I think both are going to get paid just because that's what NFL teams do.
CHARLES ROBINSON: OK, I'm-- I don't think Lamar is getting paid. I don't think they do a deal because there is-- there have been too many opportunities to do a deal up until this point.
FRANK SCHWAB: Yeah.
CHARLES ROBINSON: And if a deal gets done, that means starting today, June 15, between now and July 15, at some-- like all of a sudden, Lamar Jackson is going to do a complete about-face and open negotiations. Like, the Ravens, I can tell you, are mystified. Like they're just-- they do not understand the lack of engagement on a contract.
And I think it is what it probably-- like, let's be honest. Strip it all down. What is it most likely to be?
It's most likely to be that financially he sees some upside in saying, you know what, if I force them to tag me, OK, we're-- like, it's-- the money can exponentially change if you play on a tag and then do another deal on top. I mean, just go back and look at Dak Prescott, OK? And I think--
FRANK SCHWAB: Or Kirk. Kirk's another one.
CHARLES ROBINSON: Or Kirk Cousins. Yeah, go back and look at these quarterbacks that played themselves into a tag situation. All-- the amount of leverage that they then brought to the table and landed what at that time were historic deals. Kirk Cousins was the highest paid quarterback in the NFL at one point.
People forget that. That happened coming out of a tag situation. Dak Prescott landed $40 million a year and a hellacious guarantee coming out of a tag situation.
So Lamar's a smart man. He knows. Like, he knows if I be on myself and play into a tag, it's going to-- you think the money is big now, just wait.
And, oh, by the way, a couple other quarterbacks are going to come in. And that's only going to-- and particularly if he plays at an MVP level, that's only going to raise his price even more. And you're heading into what should be the salary cap potentially pumping. Like we don't know yet. But, you know, some teams are saying like, OK, the big jump is coming.
FRANK SCHWAB: I think Lamar is going to have a great season. I think Ravens win that division. I think he's-- and so betting on himself is perfectly fine.
But-- and you look at it from the Ravens' aspect, too, you can use the tag twice, I think. Three--
CHARLES ROBINSON: Sure.
FRANK SCHWAB: --it gets really ridiculous.
CHARLES ROBINSON: No, no, you can't three, no.
FRANK SCHWAB: Twice is like, whatever. We could budget for that. We could budget for twice.
CHARLES ROBINSON: Yeah.
FRANK SCHWAB: That's seven years of Lamar Jackson. And you're about at the point where you're like, is he going to fall off the cliff like Cam? Again, nothing else Lamar, but the style he plays is not meant to last for 12-15 years.
CHARLES ROBINSON: But if he doesn't, I mean, that's the thing. If he doesn't fall off a cliff, if he-- like, if he--
FRANK SCHWAB: Right.
CHARLES ROBINSON: --manages to stay healthy, and plays at an MVP level, and they have, you know, the success they're looking for in the postseason, I mean, he's going to get an astronomical number. So I don't think Lamar gets done. I-- it just-- it's been too odd. And particularly when you talk to people in that building about how this has all unfolded, it would be stunning to me if all of a sudden this just took a complete left turn, and a deal gets done now.
Now Kyler, I think that gets done. And here's why. Steve Keim behind the scenes has been saying the same thing, OK, all along. It's going to get done.
Like it's going to-- there's all this, you know, acrimony. And all Erik Burkhardt the agent's out here doing this and doing that. And everybody's-- oh, my God, Kyler might not show up, and all these things.
Steve Keim has been consistent. We're going to get this done. Like, it just-- let it.
There's going to be an off season here. Let the off season play out. It's going to get done.
So I think now we're coming into the moving zone. And what I mean by that is in the next month they're going to-- there's going to be movement on it, OK? And there's going to be some significant, you know, negotiations that go back and forth. And I think they will find a number north of $40 million.