Immediately after Lamar Jackson confirmed the rumors that he's already requested a trade from the Baltimore Ravens, many eyes turned to the Atlanta Falcons. However, it just doesn't seem that the Falcons are enamored of Lamar Jackson just as much as other teams, perhaps. At least that's one takeaway from Atlanta owner Arthur Blank's recent take on the quarterback.
“Looking at it objectively I’d say there’s some concern over how long can he play his style of game,” Blank said of Lamar Jackson (h/t Josh Kendall of The Athletic). “Hopefully a long time …, but he’s missed 5, 6 games each of the last two years. Each game counts a lot in our business.”
The Falcons do not exactly have the ideal stability in the quarterback position. At the moment, Atlanta has a QB room that features Felipe Franks, Logan Woodside, Desmond Ridder, and the recently-acquired Taylor Heinicke. None of those names suggest that Atlanta has a great future under center. Ridder has the potential, but it's all that for now for him, Heinicke has plenty of experience as a starter but he's definitely not on the level of someone like Lamar Jackson.
In any case, it does appear that the Falcons are not going to throw their hat in the ring and go after Lamar Jackson.
Falcons head coach Arthur Smith has also doubled downed on Atlanta's excitement with the development of Ridder, who was selected by the team in the third round (74th overall) of the 2022 NFL Draft.
“I thought he improved week after week,” Smith said when discussing about Ridder's rookie NFL campaign, (h/t Jordan Dajani CBS Sports). “He was very effective on third and fourth down, and you saw those last two weeks the growth he made from his first start to really his third and fourth (start). We're excited about him.”
The Ravens have used their non-exclusive franchise tag on Lamar Jackson for the 2023 NFL season, but he and Baltimore are still seemingly not seeing each other in the eye, hence the QB's trade request.
In 2022, Jackson posted 2,242 passing yards and 17 touchdowns with seven interceptions on a 62.3 percent completion rate across 12 games.