Maybe Jalen Ramsey really likes Tupac Shakur. Or maybe the disgruntled Jaguars cornerback has made a decision on his landing spot. Either way, things will never be the same.
On Saturday night, Ramsey posted a cryptic Instagram story of Shakur wearing a Los Angeles Raiders hoodie and labeled it with the word: “Mood.” Is there anything to read in between the lines here? Everything has been quiet on the Ramsey trade front after an initial report surfaced that the shutdown corner would be traded by Friday. That deadline came and passed with no movement. He is still in Jacksonville with no new contract despite overtures from Jaguars owner Shahid Khan that he wanted to work something out.
The image Ramsey used is from an iconic black-and-white photoshoot Shakur did with famed photographer Albert Watson in 1991. It’s also the main photo on Shakur’s official Wikipedia page. In it, the legendary rapper is half-smiling at the camera while sporting the black hoodie with the name “Los Angeles Raiders” visible. The image was part of a promotional shoot for the album “2Pacalypse Now” and there are others in the series where the team name is more noticeable.
Jalen Ramsey Listed Raiders as Target in August
Jalen Ramsey has indicated that Las Vegas would be an ideal landing spot due to its laws on income tax. There or Nashville. The Raiders, of course, will be moving to a new stadium in Sin City in 2020.
“I like (Las) Vegas,” Ramsey told the podcast “Bussin’ With The Boys” in August. “They don’t have any state income tax.”
The Raiders were also mentioned earlier this week by ESPN’s Josina Anderson as one of five teams that made a “substantive inquiry” for Ramsey.
Oakland Able to Handle Cap Hit, Salary Demands
There aren’t many teams capable of absorbing the lucrative contract extension Jalen Ramsey is seeking. Ramsey is arguably the league’s top cornerback and he’ll want to be paid as such. Surprisingly, Oakland is one of the few teams that could afford to pay him top dollar. According to OverTheCap, the Raiders have $26.5 million in cap space in 2019, plus roughly $94 million in 2020.
Ramsey has never been shy about how much money he thinks he deserves. He pulled up to Jaguars training camp in a Brinks truck and made the following statement in an Instagram video, via Pro Football Talk.
“Next year, especially after I ball, they’re going to come to me ‘Hey, you know, we want to holler at you,” Ramsey said, and then whistles. “That number is going to be so ungodly. They’re going to say, ‘Oh god, can’t we get a little discount, 20 percent off?’”
That was followed by some aggressive head-shaking.
“I’m going to tell them last year you could have gotten that discount,” Ramsey said. “This year, (more head shakes). I’m going to need all of that.”
If he wants to be the highest-paid corner in the NFL, it’s going to cost the Raiders upwards of $75 million over five years. In May, Xavien Howard became the top player compensated at the position after inking a five-year, $76.5 million extension ($46 million guaranteed) with the Dolphins. He and the Redskins’ Josh Norman set the bar at approximately $15 million per season. Would Oakland go that high for Ramsey? They are going to have to if they truly want his services.