Whether it’s merited or not, the knock on Lamar Jackson has always been his passing ability. It’s a major reason why he slipped all the way to the 32nd pick in the 2018 NFL Draft after a strong college career that included a Heisman Trophy win in 2016.
Still, coming out of Louisville, many weren’t convinced the dangerous dual-threat QB’s skills would translate to the next level.
It’s safe to say, after leading his team to the playoffs in three of his four seasons as a starter, being named to two Pro Bowl teams, and winning an MVP in 2019, Jackson is one of the best players in football.
Yet, even with the Ravens leading the No. 1 rated offense, then slipping to No. 7, and finally No. 17 this past season with Jackson missing five games, the idea that Jackson needs to refine his passing ability remains.
Here’s the thing. The critics are both right and wrong.
Truthfully, there are a few adjustments Jackson could make to his game.
The good news? He’s fully aware of the extra work he needs to put in.
Lamar Jackson still has a strong desire to improve
According to Jeff Zrebiec of The Athletic, Jackson has been working with a mechanics expert throughout the offseason.
He’s been training with Adam Dedeaux, the CEO and “motion performance expert” of 3DQB, a training company out of Huntington Beach, California.
They’ve worked with a large collection of quarterbacks ranging from youth all the way up to NFL QBs, like Tom Brady. Maybe you’ve heard of him?
They clearly have the pedigree and a long list of NFL supporters. Maybe they can help Jackson take another step as a passer as he heads into his fifth season with the Baltimore Ravens.
- Lamar Jackson stats: 64.4% completion rate, 2,882 passing yards, 16 TD, 13 INT
Maybe Jackson’s motivation to improve his passing mechanics stems from his contract negotiations with the Ravens’ front office thus far. In most cases, Jackson would have signed his extension a long time ago, as it’s unlikely he wants to be anywhere else, and the Ravens are fully committed to their franchise QB.
Yet, it’s possible the team has some reservations over whether Jackson is deserving of Patrick Mahomes generational talent money. But he is.
There’s a reason why Jackson won MVP. At his best, there’s no one else teams would want to have the ball in their hands.
Now that he’s received even more instruction on how to iron out some of his accuracy weaknesses, we could see the best version of Jackson yet in 2022-23, and that’s a scary thought, because he’s already pretty damn good.