Lamar Jacksonenters Week 3 scorching hot after divebombing opponents the first two games of the 2019 campaign.
TheBaltimore Ravensquarterback has silenced the doubters, tossing 7 touchdown passes through two weeks. After a 324 yards passing, 5 TD performance in Week 1 versus theDolphins, Lamar got his legs more involved against theCardinalsin Week 2, compiling 120 rushing yards to go with 272 yards passing.
Count Michael Vick among those impressed by Jackson’s start.
“That’s a dangerous man behind center,” the former QB who epitomized dual-threat during his NFL career said whentracked down on the streets by TMZ.
To those willing to discount Jackson’s impressive first two games this season based on the fact that they played theDolphinsand Cards, Vick scoffed, saying those performances were “no fluke.”
“You don’t go out and throw five touchdown passes and call it [a fluke],” Vick said. “…I’m excited for the guy. He’s going to be hard to deal with for a long time.”
To Vick’s point, the plays that Jackson has made are repeatable even against better competition. The quarterback has been pin-point accurate through much of the first two weeks, particularly on deep shots.
Jackson owns a 140.0 passer rating on deep shots (20-plus air-yards) this season, fifth-highest in the NFL, per Next Gen Stats. He ranks in the top five on deep passes this year in yards per attempt (24.9), TD-INT ratio (2-0) and passer rating.
While he hasn’t been forced to throw outside the numbers much (18 attempts) he’s also shown an ability to fit the ball into those windows when needed. TheRavenssignal-caller is 15-of-18 for 163 yards, 1 TD and a 122.9 passer rating. Outside the numbers was one area Jackson struggled with during his rookie campaign. Through two weeks, he’s turned that trend around:
Lamar JacksonPassing Outside the Numbers:
2018: 45.3 completion percentage; 5.3 yards per attempt; 2-2 TD-INT; 59.2 passer rating
2019: 83.3 completion percentage; 9.1 yards per attempt; 1-0 TD-INT; 122.9 passer rating
Facing aChiefsdefense Sunday that has been susceptible on passes outside the numbers (15-23, 214 yards, 3 TD, 1 INT on passes outside the numbers), Jackson will once again need to show improvement in that area.
For anyone suggesting that Jackson is merely a running threat, note that the QB’s success when throwing from inside the tackle box has been nearly flawless: 38-50, 589 yards, 6 TD (154.1 passer rating), per NGS.
Sunday, Jackson will need to keep pace with Patrick Mahomesand the sizzling Kansas City Chiefsoffense. Perhaps if Jackson lights up a good team, the final doubters clinging to their root of enmity will be convinced that he is, in fact, a good young quarterback.
Michael Vick is one of many already convinced.