Photo Courtesy: USA Today

Should Lamar Jackson Get More Playing Time?

November 08, 2018 - 10:07 am

By Austin Medina 

With the bye week upon us, the Ravens have a lot of issues to sort out. First and foremost, they need to get healthy.

After that, flaws have to be addressed such as the running game, defensive mishaps, and quarterback play.

After producing his worst quarterback rating of the season against Carolina, Joe Flacco produced an underwhelming performance against the rival Steelers. He threw for just 206 yards, recording no touchdowns. Against the Steelers in week 4, Flacco threw for 363 yards and two touchdowns in a win. So what happened?

Flacco has seemingly become complacent at similar stretches of the season the previous three years. Around October, he has gone from Joe Cool to Mediocre Joe.

When coach Harbaugh was asked whether a change for Lamar Jackson could be made and he continued his firm answer.

But at what point does Harbaugh need to make a change? It has been widely reported that he is on the hot seat, making the season perhaps “playoff or bust”.

As he mentioned above, Jackson is the quarterback of the future.

If the Ravens continue their woeful ways after the bye week, why wouldn’t they see what Jackson has? Why not give him some valuable experience before become the starting quarterback in 2019?

Jackson would be a process as a starting quarterback. His raw talent has a ways to go, yet he has plenty of promise. His dual-threat ability and particularly his legs, makes defenses play on their toes. His added dynamic gives the Ravens offense a new identity.

Besides all of this, if Jackson shows ability to be a starting quarterback this season it would make one decision easier for the Ravens. Although a big if, if the Ravens decide to go with Jackson by next season, cutting Flacco would save $10 million in cap space. That $10 million could go and get more help on the offensive line or a legitimate running back.

Of course Flacco has produced success in his time with Baltimore, capturing a Super Bowl MVP in 2012. That was six years ago and since he got his $120.6 million contract in 2013, Flacco has produced one playoff season and average play.

At age 33, when is the time that Baltimore moves on from Flacco and go towards Jackson?

If the Ravens rally off several wins in the next two months, this point would be moot. Then again, that’s a big if and one not many seem to be confident of.

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