The New England Patriots are preparing for their Week 3 matchup against the Baltimore Ravens, and that means preparing to mount one of the NFL’s best quarterbacks, Lamar Jackson.
Jackson has started the 2022 season quite well, throwing for 531 yards, six touchdowns and just one interception. The quarterback has also rushed for 136 yards and found the end zone with his legs once this season.
Ever since Jackson was a prospect from Louisville, the quarterback has had to answer questions about his passability. Given his athleticism, some were even surprised that Jackson didn’t run any stretches as a wide receiver in the scouting combine.
It’s safe to say Jackson proved the doubters wrong. The quarterback was the 2019 MVP and is also a two-time Pro Bowler. Jackson has also been named an All-Pro once so far in his career, throwing for nearly 10,500 yards while in the midst of his fifth NFL season.
Patriots head coach Bill Belichick was asked about Jackson and his passing ability, and the New England head coach said he answered all questions about his throwing ability and that Jackson is an “MVP-type candidate.”
“Without a doubt,” Belichick told reporters. “He’s the type of player who’s an MVP candidate. “I think he more than answered it. Wait and see what his contract looks like. That will answer it.”
Belichick also revealed that New England had him visiting as Jackson went through the drafting process.
Jackson himself also went into detail about his visit to the Patriots and Belichick.
“I saw Belichick smile,” Jackson told reporters Wednesday. “Usually I see him and he is [like straight-faced guy]. When I saw him smile I thought, ‘Damn, you have a sense of humor.’ I have told him. He said, ‘Yeah.’ I’m like, ‘I didn’t expect you to smile.’”
The Patriots selected Sony Michel and Isaiah Wynn in the first round of the 2018 draft. Although these players have helped New England, they are not at the same level as Jackson.
Still, the Patriots had Tom Brady on the list, so picking a top quarterback in the draft would have been difficult.
The New England head coach obviously had praise for Jackson, but he also went into great detail about what makes the Ravens offense so difficult to compete against, particularly their offensive movement.
“A combination of misdirection and with all the movement too. So you have a lot of movement and then you have a kind of hardball game. Then you have all this movement. Then you have some deception games that go along with it. game actions. It really enforces a lot of eye discipline on the off-the-ball players, the linebackers, and the safeties. The boys who are on the ball don’t see any of this. They see the blocking scheme in front of them, who is attacking them, who is blocking them and what kind of blocking they are trying to do. They react to that. It doesn’t matter if it’s a cut-off block, reach block, base block, high arm, whatever it is. They really play the blocker and they find the ball. It’s the second level guys, the linebackers, the safeties that could be involved in corners, whoever these players are, trying to figure out who has who, depending, what cover you are in. who has whom do we change it? are we blocked Is it a three man switch? Is it a two man switch? Who’s got their back after faking after all this back and forth happened? Who has the quarterback?