Lamar Jackson, Even if Not 100%, Gives Baltimore Ravens Their Best Shot to Beat Green Bay Packers
The Baltimore Ravens and Green Bay Packers will face off in the Divisional round of this seasons NFL playoffs. Who’s quarterback Lamar Jackson? He gave his team their best shot to beat the heavily favored Packers at home, but ultimately lost a close game that was decided on an Antonio Brown touchdown reception with just seconds remaining.
Lamar Jackson is a quarterback for the Baltimore Ravens. He has been playing in the NFL since 2016, and he was drafted by the Ravens in 2017. He is an excellent player that gives the team their best shot at winning, even if not 100%.
When it comes to Lamar Jackson’s availability for the Baltimore Ravens’ next game against the Green Bay Packers, John Harbaugh has a plan. The idea right now is for the 2019 NFL MVP to participate.
With two consecutive losses and a game against the Packers on the horizon, Baltimore will need every advantage it can get to avoid a season-ending slump at the worst possible moment.
Even if he isn’t 100 percent, Jackson is Baltimore’s greatest chance for getting back on the winning track.
Lamar Jackson is expected to play against the Packers for the Baltimore Ravens.
Before making any judgments or administering any testing, the Ravens want to see how Lamar Jackson feels tomorrow. According to a source, they anticipate it to be a minor ankle sprain. Here’s Jackson dressed in a boot. pic.twitter.com/0TXXOwk4GV
December 12, 2021 — Dianna Russini (@diannaESPN)
In the second quarter of Baltimore’s 24-22 defeat to the Cleveland Browns, Jackson injured his right ankle. By halftime, he had been taken to the locker room and had been declared out of the game. He walked out of the stadium wearing a protective boot, something no fan likes to see on any player, much less the team’s star quarterback.
In the middle of a two-game losing run, it was a grim outlook, but on Monday, head coach John Harbaugh seemed to be confident that Jackson would be ready for the game against Green Bay. In fact, he’s thinking about it right now.
Jackson’s secret sauce is that he doesn’t have a high-ankle sprain, which is significantly more difficult to recover from than a low-ankle sprain.
According to ESPN, Harbaugh said, “The plans are right now, in my mind, for Lamar to be out there.” “So, we’ll see how things go this week.” He’ll go if he has the opportunity. Tyler [Huntley] will be the quarterback if that does not happen. That’s where we’re at right now.”
Harbaugh did seem to limit his bets by stating it all depended on how Jackson feels, but that’s about as encouraging an injury report as you can get for a player who left the previous field slumped over on a cart.
Right now, the Ravens and Packers are in very different situations.
The Baltimore Ravens’ Lamar Jackson #8 remains down on the field after sustaining an injury against the Cleveland Browns in the first half | Jason Miller/Getty Images
Green Bay is 10-3 and one game away from clinching the NFC North title. The Packers boast a top 15 offense headed by three-time MVP Aaron Rodgers, as well as a top 10 defense that might be the finest in Rodgers’ career. The Packers have won two in a row and three of their past four games. They’re a favorite to win the NFC, and even if Jackson were totally healthy, they’d put the 8-5 Ravens to the test.
The Packers score 25.2 points per game, but their defense is even better, allowing just 20.9.
Since their humiliating 22-10 defeat to the Dolphins in Miami, the Ravens have been mired in an offensive funk. When just that game and the four games following it are taken into account, their season average of 23.4 points per game decreases to 16.6. This is a span in which Baltimore has gone 2-3. This is a long cry from the Baltimore club that scored 36 points against the Chiefs and 34 points against the Chargers and Vikings in victories. Indeed, the most points Baltimore has scored in this run is 22, which came in a defeat to Cleveland.
Even with Jackson, Baltimore’s situation has not been ideal. He does, however, have one of the most unusual skill sets in the NFL, which the Ravens will need if they are to beat Green Bay.
If Jackson is able to play, he will give Baltimore the best chance to beat the Packers.
During the first quarter at Heinz Field, Lamar Jackson #8 of the Baltimore Ravens looks to throw against the Pittsburgh Steelers | Joe Sargent/Getty Images
Including the Cleveland game, Jackson has thrown just three touchdowns and six interceptions in this dreadful span that began with the Miami thrashing. Despite this, he remains the Ravens’ greatest chance of defeating the Packers.
He’ll probably be restricted on the ground, but even at 50% mobility, he’ll be more explosive than any other quarterback in the NFL who isn’t Kyler Murray.
On defense, the Packers have had difficulty restraining mobile quarterbacks. Since Colin Kaepernick thrashed the Packers in the 2012 playoffs, this has been a source of frustration for the Packers. Mike Vick raced all over a snowy Lambeau Field in the 2002 wildcard upset of the widely fancied Packers.
It’s as Green Bay as cheese curds and cheeseheads to try to stop mobile quarterbacks.
Green Bay suffered the most in this past Sunday Night Football game against the Chicago Bears when Chicago’s athletic quarterback, Justin Fields, was able to go outside the pocket and stretch the Packers horizontally as well as vertically. Despite the fact that the game ended in a landslide, Fields carried for 74 yards on nine tries, averaging 8.2 yards per carry with a long of 20 yards.
Even if Jackson is tightly bandaged and not at 100 percent, one would have to believe he has enough running ability to match Fields’ figures. At the very least, he poses a danger to Green Bay’s aggressive secondary, slowing them down. Fields’ quarterback rushes may have had a far greater effect versus Green Bay if Chicago had been a stronger overall team.
Of course, backup Tyler Huntley can also create plays with his legs, so it’s not all doom and gloom if Jackson isn’t ready for game day. When Jackson was ill, Huntley led the Ravens to a victory at Soldier Field against the same Bears, but let’s be honest: this Green Bay club is on another level.
Huntley may step in brilliantly, but there’s no denying that Jackson provides the Ravens with their greatest opportunity to win on Sunday.
ESPN and Pro Football Reference provided the statistics.
LAMAR JACKSON FINALLY DISCLOSES THE SECRET TO HIS INCOMPATIBLE ELUSIVENESS: ‘I’m not sure whether it can be taught.’
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