Ravens quarterback Lamar Jackson sputtered early but finished like a pro.
On Saturday night, the Ravens took the field in front of an empty M&T Stadium for their first full-contact scrimmage. Baltimore did pipe in doctored crowd noise to give the players a feel of their home-field atmosphere. However, coaches were more occupied on the status of their MVP quarterback.
Jackson was coming off a groin injury, he suffered during training camp. There was significant rust as he missed six of his first nine throws with only 24 yards passing and threw an interception. However, according to Jonas Schaffer of the Baltimore Sun, the superstar quarterback looked fully healed as his footwork did not miss a beat and suddenly, his arm strength caught up.
After “halftime,” Jackson completed six of his next seven attempts, threw two touchdowns (including a 40-yard deep ball to wideout Marquise Brown).
As the night concluded, the 23-year-old quarterback was 14 for 24, 166 yards, two touchdowns and one interception.
Ravens head coach John Harbaugh was optimistic about Jackson’s performance, “It was great. But we’ve seen a lot in practice, and we know the timing, but when you get in a game, it’s different. Protection things happen. Move around; you have to operate. That was a scramble play, so that was good to see in that sense.”
in 2019, Jackson had nine games where he averaged a ridiculous 28 points in fantasy football (via FantasyPros), don’t be surprised if he eclipses that this season.
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Browns Rookie OT Willis Jr. Battling First Team Defense in Camp
The Browns drafted offensive lineman Jedrick Willis Jr. out of Alabama with the 10th pick in the 2020 NFL Draft. However, he played right tackle with the Crimson Tide. Cleveland was grooming him for a “smooth” transition to left tackle.
I use the term “smooth” loosely as Willis Jr. has fought at the line with defensive linemen Olivier Vernon, Sheldon Richardson, and the Pro Bowler defensive end Myles Garrett. Browns offensive line coach Bill Callahan said, “We’re just trying to get as many different people on him to give him that exposure of the speed, quickness and power that he’s going to face.” (via Mary Kay Cabot of Cleveland.com)
Browns are looking for Willis Jr. to defend Baker Mayfield’s left side while the right side will be manned by free-agent acquisition Jack Conklin who signed a three-year, 42 million dollar deal in the offseason.
Chiefs’ Mathieu Believes this Defense Won’t Miss a Beat
Chiefs’ veteran safety Tyrann Mathieu spoke to Adam Teicher of ESPN.com regarding this defense as “as one of the best defenses in the National Football League.”
You are saying to yourself, Wait a minute. The Chiefs finished 17th overall in defense, what do you mean?
Yes, the Chiefs did finish below the top 15. After giving up 24 points per game in the first 10 games. In the last six games, they surrendered a league-low 11.5 points. Defensive coordinator Steve Spagnuolo turned them from a 31st-ranked squad into a scrappy but effective defense that earned the Chiefs their second championship in 50 years.
Mathieu continued, “We’ve just got a lot of guys that work hard and fit our scheme really well. A lot of those guys are coming back.”