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Lamar Jackson to the Falcons makes an excessive amount of sense. So why isn’t it taking place?

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From the second the Ravens signed QB Lamar Jackson to a non-exclusive franchise tag, many within the public appeared to assume that Atlanta was the subsequent vacation spot for the previous MVP. Ample receiving targets, an entire lot of cap house, and most significantly, a necessity at QB. Nevertheless, as quickly because the information went public that Jackson acquired a non-exclusive franchise tag, the Falcons responded with lightning pace (through ESPN’s Dianna Russini):

What? It felt just like the Falcons have been doing one thing dumb by overtly saying that they weren’t fascinated about Jackson, particularly when that staff might presumably be a QB away from rivalry in a weak NFC South. Then, you get into the strikes that the Falcons made in free company. A Jessie Bates deal right here, David Onyemata and Kaden Elliss come on down, and Atlanta re-signed RT Kaleb McGary to a three-year, $34 million deal. All of those strikes make sense as a way to make the staff higher, however they nonetheless don’t have a quarterback.

So why is it that the Falcons didn’t go after Jackson?

Properly for those who ask Falcons proprietor Arthur Clean, he would say one thing alongside the strains of this:

Now that is the place we get complicated. The harm issues are the rationale the Falcons didn’t pursue Jackson, but Lamar has performed in 10 extra video games in his profession than Deshaun Watson, who the Falcons tried to commerce for within the midst of his sexual harassment investigation. As well as, Watson has torn his ACL twice, whereas Jackson’s worst harm is the MCL sprain he suffered within the earlier season.

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It feels just like the Falcons are spinning the wheel of mediocrity by not buying and selling for Jackson. Positive, you possibly can attempt constructing every thing across the QB, however Desmond Ridder isn’t profitable sufficient video games to get into rivalry. Taylor Heinecke might begin a couple of video games, however you then’re simply taking part in the QB carousel till you select to get off. The core gamers for Atlanta on offense have already handled harm points: TE Kyle Pitts solely performed in 10 video games this previous season and RB Cordarrelle Patterson solely performed in 13 video games. So as to get probably the most out of those guys, why not commerce for a perennial MVP candidate who was having one other nice 12 months earlier than he was injured?

So if we’ve thrown out harm historical past, and we’ve already mentioned that including a former MVP would assuredly make a staff higher, why isn’t Atlanta dealing for Jackson?

Similar as each different staff—the contract.

The explanation the Falcons didn’t commerce for Deshaun Watson was the contract Watson was asking for. Watson wished a completely assured contract, and acquired one from Cleveland. That’s what sparked Jackson to request a completely assured contract of his personal. NFL house owners have determined to not give out any extra absolutely assured contracts, they wish to make the Watson deal a blip on the radar, and never a development, which doesn’t assist Jackson’s case. The Falcons should pay star CB AJ Terrell subsequent 12 months, and Kyle Pitts the 12 months after that, so for Atlanta it may not appear to make sense to pay Jackson some huge cash when lots of their core gamers should be paid sooner or later.

The counterpoint to that’s easy: in 2024 the Falcons are projected to have $82 million in cap house, and with the wage cap continually rising (NFL.com reviews that the 2023 wage cap elevated to a report $224.8 million) there will likely be sufficient cash to go round. Why not commerce for an MVP candidate, kickstart a passing sport that’s on life help and go contend for a division whereas the rivals will likely be beginning Derek Carr, a rookie and God is aware of what in Tampa Bay?

Atlanta felt just like the vacation spot that made probably the most sense. Nevertheless, the Falcons are selecting to go a roundabout manner of constructing their franchise, which is a harmful sport to play with out having crucial place in sports activities locked down.

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