Lions vs Ravens Week 3 NFL preview
Lamar Jackson reminded everyone of his elite playmaking ability when he led the Baltimore Ravens past the Kansas City Chiefs in prime time Sunday.
Yet the Ravens quarterback doesn’t want to dwell on that performance as his team heads to Detroit for Sunday’s game against the Lions.
“I’m still locked in,” he said. “I don’t get on any high horse or anything, or be like, ‘We just won a championship.’ We’ve still got a long season ahead of us.”
It could be a long day for the winless Lions if Jackson plays like he did against the Chiefs. Jackson rushed for 107 yards and two touchdowns and passed for 239 and another score, making up for an early pick-six in Baltimore’s 36-35 triumph.
The Ravens bounced back from their season-opening overtime loss to Las Vegas.
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“We’ve got to transition to Detroit now because those guys are hungry,” he said.
Jackson has rushed for 100 or more yards nine times in his career, second-most by any quarterback in NFL history (one behind Michael Vick’s record). He has connected with Marquise Brown for touchdown passes in each of the first two games.
The running back spot, which has been decimated by injuries, featured a new 1-2 punch in Ty’Son Williams and Latavius Murray. Williams has averaged 6.5 yards on his 22 carries so far this season and Murray, a north-south runner, has two touchdowns.
“There’s going to be injuries,” coach John Harbaugh said. “We got hit hard, no question about it, but you have to step up and you have to overcome.”
The Lions (0-2) are looking to give Dan Campbell his first head coaching win. They were outscored 21-0 in the second half of a 35-17 loss to Green Bay on Monday night.
Detroit’s pass defense was carved up by Aaron Rodgers, who threw for four touchdowns. The Lions gave up 41 points in a season-opening loss to San Francisco.
“We’re looking for guys that are going to challenge on the perimeter and we’re looking for guys that are going to rally to the football,” Campbell said.
Quarterback Jared Goff had two crucial turnovers in the second half. However, the offseason acquisition from the Los Angeles Rams has already established a strong connection with tight end T.J. Hockenson, who has hauled in 16 passes for 163 yards and two touchdowns.
“He’s their best guy,” Harbaugh said. “He’s the guy they go to, Jared Goff is looking for him. They’ve got plenty of good players over there but he’s the straw that stirs the drink. He can make every kind of play.”
The Ravens lead the all-time series 4-1 but the teams haven’t faced each other since a 44-20 Baltimore victory on Dec. 3, 2017.
The Lions will be at a disadvantage with a short week.
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“You don’t get as much physical work as you want but mentally, we’ve got to be sharp,” Campbell said.
They’ll also have to do a better job establishing the run to keep Jackson off the field. The Lions have posted 5.2 yards per carry but have attempted only 43 rushes in the two losses, mainly due to playing catchup a majority of the time.
Detroit wide receiver Ty Williams has been ruled out due to a concussion for this Lions vs Ravens matchup and linebacker Trey Flowers (shoulder/knee) was listed as a non-participant in Wednesday’s practice. Among the Ravens who missed Wednesday’s practice included tackle Ronnie Stanley (ankle), defensive linemen Derek Wolfe (hip/back) and Brandon Williams (neck), and defensive backs DeShon Elliott (concussion) and Tavon Young (knee).
–Field Level Media