In the football community, there is a stigma attached to mobile college quarterbacks that makes it seem as if they simply cannot perform at a high level in the NFL. Lamar Jackson is ready to put that belief to rest.
While Jackson’s gaudy rushing numbers catch the eyes of many, the strides he has made as a passer has been the most impressive aspect of his game during his junior year. With a very weak supporting cast, Jackson has shined.
In his last game, against Syracuse, Jackson put on an absolute clinic. His receivers struggled mightily with drops throughout the game, but he thrived nonetheless. His ball placement on several throws was jaw-dropping, and he showcased his ability to move the pocket with ease, something you do not see from most young quarterbacks. This was just a microcosm of his fantastic season, and I believe he has displayed that he can succeed as a quarterback at the next level.
As if you did not already know, Jackson is an anomaly of athleticism. His ability to win games with his legs from is something we haven’t seen from the quarterback position since the days of Mike Vick (although his legacy lives on in Madden). His slippery style makes him impossible to keep from escaping a broken pocket, and a lethal threat in the open field.
Obviously, there are still some noticeable weaknesses in Jackson’s game. His footwork is very choppy on his throws, causing some rather inaccurate throws. Another glaring flaw is his inability to make throws outside the hashes consistently. This was prominent in his game against North Carolina earlier this year, where he missed several out routes by a wide margin. Jackson will need to improve in these categories before he’ll be ready to succeed at the next level, and I believe he will in time.
It simply amazes me that a Heisman winning game changer is getting little to no love from the draft community, even after making serious strides as a passer. Jackson is definitely a project, but the potential return on investment is astronomical.