The Baltimore Ravens caught a glimpse of what life would be like without Lamar Jackson under center. The quarterback missed five games after suffering an injury and the Ravens had to put their faith in Tyler Huntley. Jackson is really the lifeblood of their offense with his versatility with the ball in his hands. Unfortunately, Baltimore isn’t going to make it easy for him this year.
A blockbuster trade went down in the 2022 NFL Draft. The Arizona Cardinals acquired wide receiver Marquise Brown from the Ravens for draft compensation. At the time of this writing, Baltimore is going to head into the season with Rashod Bateman, Devin Duvernay, James Proche II and Tylan Wallace as their top wide receivers. If Jackson is going to have much success passing this year, he is going to have to lean even more heavily on tight end Mark Andrews.
2021 season statistics & fantasy finish
Passing: Jackson completed 246 of his 382 passing attempts for a 64.4% completion percentage. That makes back-to-back years that Jackson finished with a completion percentage of exactly 64.4%. He threw for 2,882 yards with 16 touchdowns and 13 interceptions.
Rushing: The highlight of Jackson’s game has always been his rushing ability. He ran the ball 133 times in 2021 for 767 yards and only two touchdowns.
Fantasy: Playing in only 12 games, Jackson finished as the overall QB16 with 239.98 fantasy points. He was tied for the eighth-most fantasy points per game for quarterbacks that played in at least 12 games.
Ravens offseason moves
The biggest move was the Brown trade that left the franchise depleted at wide receiver. The other moves they made were to improve their defense. The only other notable offensive move they made was signing Mike Davis. JK Dobbins and Gus Edwards should be back from their injuries, but Davis adds a veteran presence just in case.
2022 best-case scenario
The best-case scenario for Jackson is that he is able to get back to being the leading rusher for the team. He is going to need a wide receiver to play above their expectations. Andrews is in line for a great year, but can only do so much. Jackson has to be able to establish a semblance of a passing game to set up his rushing ability and not face stacked boxes all season. The best-case scenario is that this all works out perfectly and he is able to finish as a top-five fantasy quarterback.
2022 worst-case scenario
Taking an injury out of the equation, there is still so much that can go wrong for Jackson. You could easily make an argument that he will be passing to the worst wide receiver group in the league. Jackson has already struggled as a passer in his career, and Baltimore is not setting him up for success. If the Ravens face more stacked boxes and Jackson isn’t able to run as freely, he could finish as a QB2 in fantasy.
Jackson is a tough one to judge. The Ravens really need to make a move by either signing a free agent or trading for an established wide receiver. A guy like Will Fuller would automatically improve Jackson’s prospect just to draw some attention away from him. As things are right now, I think Jackson finishes in the range of QB10-12. His rushing upside makes it hard to put him much lower than that and he will still have Andrews lighting up defenses.