Ex-Pats Star To Lamar Jackson: 'You Don't Want To Play For Bill Belichick'
By Jason Hall
March 30, 2023
Former New England Patriots cornerback Asante Samuel Sr. issued a public warning to Baltimore Ravens quarterback Lamar Jackson regarding his former coach Bill Belichick amid Jackson's rumored interested in joining the Patriots.
"Lamar Jackson, my brother trust me you don’t want to play for Belichick," Samuel tweeted Thursday (March 30) morning.
Samuel's tweet was shared one day after the Athletic's Jeff Howe reported that the "Patriots will not pursue" Jackson amid his non-exclusive franchise tag and public announcement that he requested a trade from the Ravens. Howe's report came after Patriots owner owner Robert Kraft claimed his close friend, rapper Meek Mill, texted him that Jackson wanted to join the Patriots, but said the decision would ultimately be up to Belichick.
Lamar Jackson, my brother trust me you don’t want to play for Belichick— Asante Samuel (@pick_six22) March 30, 2023
"That's Bill's decision," Kraft said via the Boston Globe's Ben Volin.
Robert Kraft says Meek Mill texted him 3-4 days ago that Lamar Jackson wants to be a Patriot. Kraft said “That’s Bill’s decision.”— Ben Volin (@BenVolin) March 27, 2023
Samuel, who played for the Patriots during his first five NFL seasons (2003-07), has previously claimed that Belichick "is just another coach" without former teammate Tom Brady at quarterback.
"Cold blooded is a [sic] understatement! But without Brady he is just another coach in my opinion," Samuel tweeted in response to ESPN's Louis Riddick calling the six-time Super Bowl-winning coach "cold blooded" upon news of veteran Cam Newton's release in 2021.
Samuel's tenure with the Patriots ended on bad terms as he was forced to play his final year under the franchise tag and then left as a free agent after dropping a would-be game-securing interception during Super Bowl XLII, which would have given New England a perfect season.
Jackson said he requested a trade earlier this month after the Ravens had "not been interested in meeting my value" during negotiations on a long-term deal and later decided to instead place a $32.4 million non-exclusive franchise tag on him. The Ravens had until 4:00 p.m. ET on March 7 to notify the league about its franchise tag decision to place a non-exclusive franchise tag on Jackson earlier this month.
A non-exclusive franchise tag allows Baltimore to have the option to either match another team's offer to sign the quarterback or receive trade compensation.
in regards to my future plans. As of March 2nd I requested a trade from the Ravens organization for which the Ravens has not been interested in meeting my value, any and everyone that’s has met me or been around me know I love the game of football and my dream is to help a team— Lamar Jackson (@Lj_era8) March 27, 2023
Jackson led Baltimore to an 8-4 record, which included throwing for 2,242 yards, 17 touchdowns and seven interceptions on 203 of 326 passing, while also recording a team best 764 rushing yards and four rushing touchdowns on 112 attempts, prior to suffering a season-ending PCL injury. The Ravens ranked ninth among all 32 NFL teams with an average of 23.1 points per game during Jackson's 12 starts, but dropped to 13.0 points per game, the second fewest in the league, while going 2-3 in his absence during their final five games of the regular-season.
The Ravens reportedly offered Jackson a rejected deal worth $113 million in guarantees that would have "eventually raised" to a total of $113 million, a source with knowledge of the situation told ESPN's Ryan Clark in January.
We went back and forth on @FirstTake yesterday about @Lj_era8’s guaranteed money.— Ryan Clark (@Realrclark25) January 21, 2023
Based on a source with knowledge of the negotiations Lamar was initially offered $113 million in guarantees and eventually raised to $133 million.
That was the most Lamar was offered.
Last week, the NFL sent a memo to its 32 teams warning not to negotiate with Jackson's business partner, Ken Francis, who was referred to as "an uncertified person." The memo, which was obtained and shared by ESPN's Adam Schefter, warned teams that Francis, who is not certified by the NFLPA, was "prohibited from negotiating Offer Sheets or Player Contracts, or discussing potential trades on behalf of any NFL player or prospective player or assisting in or advising with respect to such negotiations."
"Clubs are reminded that, under Article 48 of the NFL Collective Bargaining Agreement, an Offer Sheet, which may result in an NFL Player Contract, may only be negotiated with the player, if he is acting on his own behalf, or with the player's NFLPA certified agent. To be clear, Mr. Jackson is not currently represented by an NFLPA certified agent," the league wrote. "Violation of this rule may result in disapproval of any Offer Sheet or resulting Player Contract entered into by Mr. Jackson and the new Club."
Jackson denied reports that Francis was negotiating deals with NFL teams.
"Stop Lying that man never tried to negotiate for me," Jackson tweeted.
Jackson, a former NFL MVP and Offensive Rookie of the Year, has spent his entire NFL career with the Ravens since being selected No. 32 overall in the 2018 NFL Draft.