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Why Lamar Jackson should go under his yardage and TD total in 2020

Lamar Jackson had a season for the ages in 2019. Will he be able to come close to those numbers? We break down his 2020 over/under.

Quarterback Lamar Jackson #8 of the Baltimore Ravens throws a 12-yard touchdown to running back Mark Ingram in the third quarter of a game against the Cleveland Browns on December 22, 2019 at FirstEnergy Stadium in Cleveland, Ohio. Baltimore won 31-15. Photo by: 2019 Nick Cammett/Diamond Images via Getty Images

Lamar Jackson was an absolute beast in 2019 as he won the MVP, completing 66.1 percent of his passes for 3,127 yards and 36 touchdowns while rushing 176 times for 1,206 yards and seven more scores through 15 games. It will be tough to top those numbers in 2020, but we know he has it in him moving forward.

As the 2020 NFL Draft nears, DraftKings Sportsbook has given us over/under totals on passing, receiving and rushing yards for individual players. Jackson’s over/under for receiving yards in 2020 is set at 3250.5 and passing touchdowns at 26.5.

Prediction: Under 3,250.5 yards, Over 26.5 TDs

Jackson’s nine percent touchdown rate is the second highest post merger and will more than likely come down. How much it will come down is a real question, but the record for best TD percentage for a player with over 100 starts post-merger is a tie between Aaron Rodgers and Russell Wilson at six percent, while a great percentage is anything over 5 percent for a career.

Jackson is likely to be a higher TD percentage player, as his and his team’s rushing ability and their defense will keep Jackson throwing in optimal spots. Those high percentage throws should keep Jackson’s touchdown numbers up, but again, nine percent is not sustainable from year to year.

Jacksons total pass attempts should continue to be toward the lower end of the NFL spectrum, as the team ran the ball an amazing 596 times, with the 49ers coming in second at 498, in 2019. The Ravens defense likely only got better this offseason, so there won’t be much reason to increase Jackson’s pass attempts in 2020, which was last in the league for team attempts at 440, with 401 going to Jackson.

If Jackson didn’t rest in Week 17, he would have hit his over that we see this season, so he would need to be slightly less effective as a passer in 2020 to hit the under. With a great 8.9 adjusted yards per attempt, repeating will be difficult.

It’s not hard to predict another great season for Jackson after watching him cut through the league like a hot knife through butter, but projecting another MVP season isn’t usually a good call. Jackson can still be great and not hit his over on passing yards and considering that he ran the ball 176 times last season, his chances for injury go up. If I’m betting on a quarterback to go over his passing total for a season, I want to know he’s playing it safe behind his lineman and throwing the ball as much as possible.

As for his touchdowns, he’ll still need to have around a six percent TD rate to hit his over, which is top tier but I think his offense gives him enough easy opportunities to keep that percentage high. I could see taking the under on both of these as well, but my projections have his touchdowns still high.

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