Deshaun Watson discusses the Lamar Jackson contract standoff
By Randy Gurzi
Deshaun Watson is a polarizing player not only due to all the issues off the field but his contract as well. When the Cleveland Browns traded for Watson, they quickly gave him a new deal worth $230 million over five seasons, and it's all fully guaranteed.
While that average per year has since been topped, no one else has been given the guarantees he has. That has been a point of contention for those who like to defend the poor billionaire owners who are being bullied into protecting players who play a dangerous sport — but others have paid attention as well, including Lamar Jackson.
Jackson, who is his own agent, is in a standoff with the Baltimore Ravens over his contract. They've made some offers but he saw Watson's guarantee and wants that for himself. To date, Watson has stayed rather quiet on it all but recently spoke up.
Watson wisely didn't wade into the waters too deep, simply saying he hopes Jackson gets the contract he desires.
"From the outside looking in, I hope he gets what he wants. Like I said, I never talk to him about it, so I can’t speak on his business side. But he’s a great player. And he’s going to be — if he’s back in Baltimore, he’s going to be special for them. And if it’s somewhere else, he’s going to be special for that organization"- Watson
The truth is two-fold. One, Watson only got the guarantee because he was being courted by several teams whereas Jackson has solely being negotiating with the Ravens thus far. If he wants to see that guaranteed amount increase, he needs another bidder.
Two, the argument over guaranteed deals is maddening. The NBA and MLB offer fully guaranteed contracts and don't have near as many risks of serious injury as NFL players do. Yet the idea of actually protecting these guys financially from such an injury has turned into blasphemy.
Somehow, the NFL owners have made players wanting to get paid the bad guy. Hey, good on them. They get to keep money in their pockets and don't get back lash. They've even taught us all to be mad at guys like Jackson for wanting the money that fans are paying to see him perform.
But the masses continue to think he's greedy while Steve Bisciotti is the good guy protecting the moral fabric of the NFL. He should thank the Browns too because he was able to pretend Watson's past was the problem rather than his fear of paying for a guy who gets seriously injured and can't continue to make him money.
With that being said, here's to hoping Lamar Jackson gets what he wants as well. Although, I also hope he gets it with an NFC team.