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Lamar Jackson rips critics on absence from voluntary OTAs

Baltimore Ravens quarterback Lamar Jackson lashed out at critics questioning his absence from voluntary organized team activities.

Jackson specifically took issue with former NFL quarterback and current Pro Football Talk analyst Chris Simms for his take on the matter. Simms compared Jackson to Tampa Bay Buccaneers star quarterback Tom Brady, whom Simms claimed never missed OTAs until he played in four Super Bowls.

Jackson stressed over social media that the OTAs are, indeed, voluntary and that he will attend the sessions at some point. The former NFL Most Valuable Player concluded his Twitter post with “Find something else to talk about.”

Jackson, 25, is obligated to attend only the team’s mandatory minicamp, which is scheduled for June 14-16.

Jackson is set to play the 2022 season on his fifth-year option worth $23.016 million. That annual average salary is 15th in the NFL among quarterbacks, according to Spotrac. Jimmy Garoppolo is expected to be traded by the 49ers but has a 2022 salary of over $25 million.

Ravens coach John Harbaugh and general manager Eric DeCosta said following the NFL draft that the team is prepared to negotiate with Jackson but that contract talks were not a priority at the time. Jackson said his only focus is the Super Bowl.

Jackson had a combined 18 interceptions over his first three seasons before throwing 13 picks in 12 games during 2021. He had 16 touchdown passes last season, a steep decline from his 2019 MVP total of 36.

He had 767 rushing yards and two touchdowns last season after back-to-back 1,000-yard rushing seasons.


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