Will Lamar Jackson Get Back to MVP Form? One NFL Analyst Believes So

by Nick Geddes

Baltimore Ravens quarterback Lamar Jackson is set to enter the 2022 NFL season without a new contract.

Much has been made at the lack of a long-term offer for the AP’s 2019 NFL MVP, who will play on his fifth-year option. That, however, could make Jackson dangerous and could see him play with a massive chip on his shoulder. Perhaps the same size of the one he entered the league with after being selected 32nd overall in the 2018 NFL Draft.

Coming off a season in which he threw a career-high 13 interceptions in just twelve games, NFL Network analyst Bucky Brooks is high on Jackson rebounding this season. In fact, it wouldn’t surprise him to see Jackson reach the heights he did back in 2019.

“I absolutely expect Lamar Jackson to be back in MVP form,” Brooks said Tuesday on “NFL Total Access,” via BaltimoreRavens.com.

How Will Lamar Jackson Get Back to MVP Form?

For Jackson to get back to his MVP form, Brooks says the solution is simple: do what worked before. That would mean lots of running and lots of tight end Mark Andrews.

“This offense is going back to the way it looked when Lamar Jackson was having his most success,” Brooks said. “More heavies on the field, meaning more tight ends, more big backs, because when you put the bigs on the field, the defense has to counter with more bigs. That gives Lamar Jackson a bigger advantage with his athleticism and speed.

“We know he likes to throw the ball over the middle of the field to Mark Andrews. They drafted two tight ends [fourth-rounders Charlie Kolar and Isaiah Likely] so they could double down and make sure they’re able to do it. But really when you think about Lamar Jackson and the Ravens, it’s the running game . … They are going to get back to playing bully ball, big-boy football in Baltimore. When they do that they have success. Lamar Jackson is the key to that.”

Jackson, 25, threw for 36 touchdowns and just six interceptions during his MVP campaign in 2019. Since then, his passing numbers have gradually decreased. But Jackson has continued to win football games — 37-12 as a starter over the course of his four-year career.

Heading into 2022, Jackson will look to find chemistry with his receiving core with Marquise Brown now in Arizona. Rashod Bateman, the Ravens’ 2021 first-round pick out of Minnesota, is the most likely candidate to emerge as WR1. Bateman hauled in 46 receptions for 515 yards in 12 games during his rookie season.

Baltimore’s running back corps returns to full form as well, with J.K. Dobbins and Gus Edwards back after missing all of 2021 with injuries.