OWINGS MILLS, Md. -- The Baltimore Ravens' contract talks with Lamar Jackson won't be impacted by Dak Prescott's record-breaking deal with the Dallas Cowboys, general manager Eric DeCosta said Tuesday.
"If you got into the Bentley dealership or the Range Rover automobile, you know what the cars will cost. You're not going to get much of a discount," DeCosta said. "They all cost about the same and you go in there with the idea that you're going to purchase the car or you're not likely to purchase the vehicle. ... In the end, they are all very big contracts. They are outstanding players. They're quarterback deals. They are marquee players and you also know you are going to cover a whole lot, but you're going to find a lot in return."
Prescott's average of $40 million per year ranks just behind Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes ($45 million per season).
DeCosta said he has had recent one-on-one conversations with Jackson round the frame of a long-term deal. But the sides haven't started formal discussions and no contract proposals have been exchanged.
"We're confident and committed to trying to get a long-term deal done and we can find that done at some point in the not too distant future," DeCosta said. "It may take a little time but we're prepared to try."
Baltimore technically can prevent Jackson from being a free agent through at least the 2023 season if it moves his fifth-year option and uses the franchise tag. The process to sign franchise quarterbacks can be a long one. It took three decades to the Cowboys and Prescott to strike a deal.
"Every negotiation is different. Every player is different. Every GM is different," DeCosta said. "We have a strategy and we have a connection. Lamar has played three decades, and you know what, he is a fantastic player. We really feel great about him. I believe he actually feels good about us. It's up to us to find a deal done."
DeCosta indicated that he does not know whether Jackson will continue to represent himself or seek the services of a broker.
According to DeCosta, he's had a couple of discussions with Jackson because the year ended and spent some time with him a couple weeks ago. DeCosta said they talked about the team, Jackson's family as well as his own targets and dreams for the future.
"We laughed a great deal," DeCosta said. "It's been really healthy and really, really excellent. We began to chat about what a contract might seem like, but we actually haven't always become all of the weeds and the nuances of those kinds of items but that will be coming at some point shortly."
DeCosta added,"We will be as clear as you can with Lamar. He'll be as clear as you can with us. Certainly, it's likely to be a good partnership and relationship."
DeCosta touched on other topics during his 36-minute news conference:
The Ravens have started preliminary contract discussions with Pro Bowl tight end Mark Andrews, who's entering the last year of his rookie contract. "He's the type of man we want to keep." , who expressed his desire to play tackle on social networking. "He's under contract, and he understands that," DeCosta said. "We'll do what's best for Orlando and we'll do what is best for the Ravens."
The grievance with safety Earl Thomas is ongoing and will not be solved shortly. Thomas was cut last August following he punched teammate Chuck Clark in practice. When the Ravens win the grievance, then they will find an extra $5 million in cap space. If Baltimore loses, it will take away $5 million of cap room.