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Putting Lamar Jackson’s brilliant sophomore season into perspective

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Baltimore Ravens v Los Angeles Rams Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images

Every week, we watch Lamar Jackson and the Baltimore Ravens offense pulverize their opponents run defense into a pulp and finish with red zone touchdown after touchdown. Last night against the Los Angeles Rams was no different.

As Jackson and the offense continue to dominate, I felt it was time to display Jackson’s bonkers season into perspective.

First off, let’s go to Lamar Jackson’s stats alone.

L. Jackson Passing stats

Player Games Played Completions Attempts Cmp% Yards TD INT Sacks QBRating
Player Games Played Completions Attempts Cmp% Yards TD INT Sacks QBRating
L. Jackson 11 200 299 66.8 2427 24 5 20 81.9

L. Jackson Rushing stats

Player Games Played Attempts Yards Average Big gains Touchdowns Yds/Game
Player Games Played Attempts Yards Average Big gains Touchdowns Yds/Game
L. Jackson 11 124 876 7.1 9 6 79.6

On their own, it’s easy to see how impressive these stats are. His TD/INT ratio is 24/5 and his completion percentage stands around 67-percent. Also, his rushing stats place him ninth in the league. The second quarterback on the list is Kyler Murray, at 33 in the league.

Comparing the Numbers

Remember those quarterbacks taken before Jackson? Here they are when compared to the front-runner MVP candidate.

2018 QB comparison

Player Games Played Completions Attempts Cmp% Yards TD INT Sacks QBRating Passer Rating
Player Games Played Completions Attempts Cmp% Yards TD INT Sacks QBRating Passer Rating
L. Jackson 11 200 299 66.8 2427 24 5 20 81.9 111.4
B. Mayfield 11 226 375 60.3 2721 14 13 27 52.9 80.5
J. Allen 11 206 342 60.2 2360 15 8 23 44.8 85.9
S. Darnold 8 168 263 63.9 1915 13 10 23 48.4 86.3

I did not include Josh Rosen as he’s in a dumpster fire situation and it’s not worth it. He’s only played in six games, which skews the numbers.

Jackson leads in all categories, save passing yards. I’m confident he’d have more if he threw 76 more passes, which is what Baker Mayfield has done.

Quick math

  • Jackson leads completion percentage by 2.9%
  • Jackson leads in touchdowns by nine (9)
  • Mayfield leads in passing yards by 294
  • Jackson leads with fewest interceptions by three (3)
  • Jackson leads with fewest sacks by three (3)
  • Jackson leads in QB rating by 29 points
  • Jackson leads in passer rating by 25.1 points

Jackson is dominating in every category, except for passing yards. The ‘problem’ here is the Ravens not needing to air out the football. They’re leading in just about every game. They’ve scored on seven opening drives (most in the NFL) and are constantly playing with a lead, sometimes a three-score lead or more. This leaves Jackson to hand off the football to star running back Mark Ingram or Gus Edwards. No need to throw it when you’re gaining 250 yards on the ground.

More Stats

  • Jackson and Russell Wilson are tied for most passing touchdowns: 24
  • Jackson is on pace to beat Joe Flacco’s best completion percentage in Baltimore: 64.9%

Now, it’s time for the second act of Jackson’s play.

2019 Rushing Stats Comparison

Rank Player Games Played Attempts Yards Average Big gains Touchdowns Yds/Game Fumbles Lost First Downs
Rank Player Games Played Attempts Yards Average Big gains Touchdowns Yds/Game Fumbles Lost First Downs
1 C. McCaffrey 11 221 1,123 5.1 6 12 102.1 0 40
9 L. Jackson 11 124 876 7.1 9 6 79.6 0 46
10 M. Mack 10 192 862 4.5 7 4 86.2 0 52
11 C. Hyde 11 174 836 4.8 8 4 76 2 41
12 M. Ingram II 11 151 778 5.2 4 9 70.7 2 43
13 P. Lindsay 11 147 708 4.8 6 5 64.4 0 28

First, I want to clarify, in case the table doesn’t, that there are eight players ahead of Jackson in yards. I placed McCaffrey on top to show what the top running back in the league is doing. Then, I placed Jackson to show his distance from the top. Afterward, I place those below Jackson in consecutive order.

Quick Math

  • Jackson is ninth in the league in rushing yards
  • Jackson has the highest average yards per carry in the league (7.1)
  • Jackson has the most Big Gains (20+ rushing yard plays) in the league with nine (9)
  • Jackson is tied for 11 in rushing touchdowns
  • Jackson is tied with Derrick Henry for fifth-most first downs gained

Jackson is dominating both through the air and on the ground. This MVP talk isn’t due to the flashy play enamoring the fans. It’s because he’s having the best year by franchise standards passing and coupling it with the best rushing stats by a quarterback, ever.