During Lamar Jackson's three seasons with the Ravens, he has built close relationships with many people in the organization, including General Manager Eric DeCosta.
That's particularly noteworthy this offseason as the Ravens and Jackson, who does not have an agent, undergo negotiations on what will be a mega contract extension.
On the latest episode of “The Lounge” podcast, DeCosta talked about his respect for Jackson, both the player and person.
"I just really appreciate Lamar's leadership abilities and his humility," DeCosta said. "His ability to really galvanize a bunch of different people. That's a special quality that Lamar has. Forget about the physical skills. He's got a unique ability to bring all different types of people together for one common goal. I appreciate that.
"I think as a general manager, that should be my role as well. I see Lamar as a guy who does that better than most. I admire that quality about him. I've seen him, I watch him, I observe him quite a bit. He'd be the kind of guy you'd be very proud to have as a son. I just really respect the way that he plays, his competitiveness, his personality, his ability to lead players. I find that very impressive. I think he's got all the right stuff."
Whenever he speaks with the media these days, DeCosta is asked about his contract negotiations with Jackson. The Ravens recently picked up the fifth-year option on Jackson, keeping him under contract through the next two seasons as they work toward reaching a long-term deal.
DeCosta said after the draft that he would work "tirelessly" to get a deal done, with Jackson in line for the richest contract extension in franchise history. He has continuously said that the two sides are aligned in doing what's best to help the team win and that Jackson is a patient person.
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During an interview last week on ProFootballTalk, DeCosta said the open dialogue he has with Jackson will be an asset during negotiations.
"The biggest thing is communication, for me and Lamar to communicate," DeCosta said. "We've already done a deal with Lamar. Obviously, it wasn't the same. But we did. We understand some of the complications because we did that prior deal. This is a much different deal with a much different structure. This is a big deal. We want to do it right. We want to do something he feels really good about and we want to do something that we feel really good about as well."