Ravens owner Steve Bisciotti bemoaned the Browns’ blockbuster $230 million Deshaun Watson contract, which is fully guaranteed, and was presumably thinking about how it will affect his own negotiations with star quarterback Lamar Jackson.
“I don’t know that he should’ve been the first guy to get a fully guaranteed contract,” Bisciotti said of Watson on Tuesday at the NFL owners’ meetings in Palm Beach, Fla. “To me, that’s something that is groundbreaking, and it’ll make negotiations harder with others.”
The Browns gave Watson the unprecedented contract despite the fact the quarterback is facing civil litigation from 22 massage therapists accusing him of sexual misconduct.
Two Texas grand juries opted not to press criminal charges against Watson in connection with the case.
Bisciotti said he wanted a deal done with Jackson, but that the quarterback is taking his time.
“We’ll pay him when he’s ready,” Bisciotti said.
“Without a QB you believe in, life (stinks) as an NFL owner and as a fan base. … We appreciate (Lamar). All I know is that his teammates love him and the front office loves him,” he continued.
Jackson, 25, is entering his fifth season in the NFL. The Ravens have gone 37-12 in games he started, and he won the league MVP in 2019.
The Ravens owner said that general manager Eric DeCosta has been calling Jackson but that offers have been rebuffed.
“Unless he has a change of heart and calls Eric and says I’m ready. But it’s like, Eric can’t keep calling him and say, ‘Hey Lamar, you really need to get in here and get this thing done,” Biscioti said.
“It’s unique as hell … The kid is so obsessed with winning a Super Bowl, that I think deep down, he doesn’t think he’s worthy. I think he wants that to say, ‘Now, I deserve to be on top’”