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Lamar Jackson – Fantasy Points Outlook

Bottom Line

Though leg injuries have cut Jackson’s last two NFL seasons short, the Ravens ultimately gave the former NFL MVP a five-year, $260 million contract this offseason.With his elite rushing acumen and the upgrade on the coaching staff with new OC Todd Monken, Jackson can elevate his passing game and show fantasy managers why he earned that mega-deal.

Draft Jackson with confidence as a solid QB1 – with upside to the top of the position.

What We Learned Last Year
  • Jackson entered last season with three consecutive seasons as a top-10 QB in fantasy points per game. He achieved that feat again in 2022 (QB6, 19.7 points per game) and finished as the QB14 overall in 12 games played.
  • If you take a peek behind the curtain, Jackson’s 2022 wasn’t as good as it sounds on paper. After a red-hot start to the season, including back-to-back QB1 overall finishes in Week 2 and Week 3, he fell off in production before succumbing to a season-ending knee injury in early December:
    • Week 1 – Week 4: QB1 overall (29.9 points per game)
    • Week 5 – Week 13: QB18 overall (15.4 points per game)
  • The former first-round pick has now failed to finish the last two seasons healthy because of leg injuries.
  • The good news is that we can count on Jackson to run the ball effectively. He ranked second in PFF rushing grade among QBs in 2022 with six games of 70+ rushing yards.
  • Since becoming a full-time starter in 2019, Jackson ranks first among QBs in rushing attempts (580), rushing yards (3,742), and rushing yards per game (69.3).
    • His rushing floor is a big part of why he’s the QB3 in fantasy points per game (22.68) in that same span.
  • The biggest problem with Jackson is that he’s still not much of a passer. 2022 was the second year in a row in which he failed to throw for over 3,000 passing yards and 20+ TDs.
  • Among 52 QBs who’ve started at least 10 games since 2019, here’s how Jackson ranks in some key passing categories:
    • 37th in passing yards per game (203.9)
    • 27th in completion percentage (64.4%)
    • 13th in passer rating (98.1)
    • t-13th in adjusted yards gained per attempt (7.63)
  • Through four seasons with OC Greg Roman calling the plays for the Ravens’ offense, Jackson showed he is capable of being a pretty good passer, but there’s not a ton of evidence to suggest he’s prolific by any means.
What to Expect in 2023
  • The single-most significant move the Ravens made this offseason was moving on from OC Greg Roman and hiring former University of Georgia OC Todd Monken.
  • We’ll likely see a shift to a more balanced offensive philosophy in 2023 and beyond, which means Jackson’s path to greater passing production is now much clearer than it has been in his career.
  • Monken previously spent four seasons as an OC at the NFL level with the Buccaneers (2017-18) and Browns (2019). Here’s how Monken’s offenses in that window compares to Roman’s offense over the last four years in Baltimore in Pass Rate Over Expectation (PROE):
    • Monken: +1.8% PROE
    • Roman: -5.5% PROE
  • Early reports out of Ravens camp agree with this notion and indicate that the offense will be ‘up-tempo’ and pass more.
  • The additions of 1st-round NFL draft pick Zay Flowers and free agent signee Odell Beckham Jr. will also provide Jackson with a plethora of quality pass-catching options on top of TE Mark Andrews and WR Rashod Bateman.
  • We know Jackson possesses an elite upside with his rushing. Still, with his new arsenal of weapons and increased passing potential, we’re looking at someone who has the opportunity to return to his 2019 NFL MVP form if everything clicks.
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