Through his first season-plus in the NFL, Baltimore Ravens quarterback Lamar Jackson has quickly proven to be a game-changing factor on the field. He has led the franchise to much success in his short time with the team that has caught the attention of New England Patriots star quarterback Tom Brady, who gave a special message before Sunday’s contest between both teams.
Lamar Jackson’s rise to stardom
In the months leading into the 2018 NFL Draft, there were plenty of questions and concerns about whether Jackson could find success at the next level, let alone play the quarterback position.
Jackson has silenced those doubters with his stellar play in his short time in the league as he holds a 12-3 career regular-season record, which includes a trip to the playoffs behind an AFC North division title. His ability to impact the game with both his arm and legs has helped him already rack up notable NFL marks.
His performance has drawn comparisons to that of former star quarterback Michael Vick, but he has been faster to earning success in the league. The Ravens are in the position to reach the playoffs for the second straight year with him at the helm.
Beyond that, Jackson’s performance has caught the attention of one of his idols this past Sunday night.
Tom Brady is a “big fan” of Lamar Jackson’s play
For the first time in his brief NFL career, Jackson had the opportunity to take on the Patriots and go toe-to-toe with Brady.
The Louisville product more than held his own as he led the Ravens to an impressive win at home against the previously undefeated Patriots behind three total touchdowns with 163 passing yards and 61 rushing yards. Before the game, Brady took the time to briefly speak with Jackson to give him a personal message.
Brady is among the many that have been fascinated by Jackson’s play as it has proven to be quite difficult for opposing teams to game plan against him. His ability to create plays with his legs along with his strong decision making has ramped that up another notch.
The Patriots had a difficult time keeping him under wraps as he was elusive as a runner while playing mistake-free football as a passer. More than that, Jackson’s play could elevate Baltimore into being a legitimate threat to dethrone New England and make a run towards the Super Bowl.
Ravens’ outlook for rest of 2019 season
The Ravens led by Jackson’s MVP-caliber play are in a promising position with a chance to make some headway in the AFC playoff standings.
Baltimore possesses a two-game lead over the Pittsburgh Steelers, who are red-hot having won their last three straight games. Nonetheless, the Ravens are in the driver’s seat to earn yet another AFC North division title while currently sitting with the second-best mark in the conference, only a game behind the Patriots.
The amount of success the team has from this point on will rest on Jackson’s shoulders as he’s been the driving force of their offensive attack. He hasn’t slowed down in his ability to make plays with his legs in the running game with 637 rushing yards, the most by a quarterback through the first eight games of a season.
There doesn’t appear to be any concern at this point about him possibly wearing down in the second half of the year. That will be an area that the team will focus on more closely as the playoffs near to keep him fresh for the long run.
More importantly, it has become more evident with each passing week that Jackson has arrived as a bonafide star in the league.