Two young quarterbacks on two of the best AFC teams in the league, Mahomes, and Jackson duking it out on the field, have already wowed NFL fans. Most experts have the Kansas City Chiefs and Baltimore Ravens pinned as two of the top AFC contenders over the next decade-plus.
The only problem with said “rivalry” is, well, that it isn’t much of rivalry at the moment. Heading into the pair’s Week 2 battle on Sunday Night Football, Mahomes is actually undefeated when squaring off against Jackson.
Patrick Mahomes has never lost to Lamar Jackson
Should the Chiefs win again during Week 2, the Ravens very well could be facing a difficult question:
Is Jackson good enough to ever topple Mahomes and the Chiefs?
Now before diving too deep into this question, it’s worth highlighting that Jackson is still one of the best QBs in the NFL at the moment. He was the league MVP in 2019 and kicked off 2021 with a 300-plus yard performance against the Las Vegas Raiders. Even with his passing skills proving to be below average at times, most NFL teams would absolutely kill to have Jackson on their roster. He is very much a “franchise quarterback” type of talent.
With that said, Mahomes is a different caliber of special. It took him no more than two seasons to secure a Super Bowl ring, and he’s well on his way to being a first-ballot Hall of Famer. Most of the NFL’s all-time passing records will be broken by Mahomes if he continues at his current pace.
It’s never a good idea to build out your roster with another team in mind, but it’s hard to ignore the prominence of the Chiefs in the AFC. They are unquestionably the team to beat and the biggest hurdle that stands in the way of the Ravens’ Super Bowl dreams.
Should the Ravens be worried?
Should the Ravens be worried about Jackson if he falls to 0-4 against Mahomes?
Short answer: no. Long answer: yes. Jackson is a good QB regardless of his win-loss record versus Mahomes, but the Ravens must figure out a way to overcome the Chiefs sooner rather than later.
Barring some unforeseen circumstance, the Ravens will have to go through Kansas City at some point if they ever want a shot at the Super Bowl during the Lamar Jackson era.
What this means for Patrick Mahomes, Lamar Jackson
For Mahomes, a fourth consecutive win over Jackson only further solidifies his status as the best quarterback in the AFC. For the Ravens, a small seed of doubt may get planted in their heads regarding Jackson’s future in Baltimore.
Jackson is currently eligible for a contract extension, yet the Ravens haven’t inked him to one (Pro Football Talk). This isn’t overly concerning. However, it’s reflective that the Ravens’ front office didn’t jump at the opportunity to hand Jackson $200-plus million.
Could another failed season at the hands of Mahomes and the Chiefs convince the Ravens to look elsewhere at the QB position later down the road? Maybe.
All stats courtesy of Pro Football Reference.