AP Photo/Nick Wass
- Lamar Jackson provided one of the highlights of the preseason with an 18-yard rush against the Packers on Thursday night.
- The play was called back due to a penalty, but Jackson’s juking and hurdling ability showed what a danger he is to opposing defenses.
- After the game, Aaron Rodgers offered some simple advice to the young Ravens quarterback: "Slide a little bit."
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Lamar Jackson is a true dual-threat quarterback, as he showed after taking over the starting role for the Ravens halfway through the season in 2018, averaging 17 rushing attempts per game.
Now in his first preseason as the starting quarterback of the Ravens, Jackson has given football fans a taste of what to expect from the Baltimore offense this year and surprise, surprise, he’s still running the ball.
During Thursday night’s preseason game against the Packers, Jackson pulled off this jaw-dropping run, juking out two defenders and hurdling a third to find the end zone on an 18-yard scamper.
While the play was called back due to a penalty, the highlight is still quite impressive.
Jackson managed just a few drives for the Ravens before hitting the bench, completing six of his 10 pass attempts and taking two rushes for 14 yards.
After the game, Jackson exchanged pleasantries with Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers, who offered a bit of admiration and advice for the young Raven.
"I love watching you play, man," Rodgers told Jackson. "That was pretty spectacular."
Then, after a beat, Rodgers added, "Have a great season. Slide a little bit."
According to ESPN, the Ravens have yet to call a designed run for Jackson in the preseason, and through training camp have focused on Jackson’s arm than his feet. But when a play breaks down and Jackson has to make a decision, trusting his ability as a rusher usually turns out to be a pretty good option.
"What are you going to do? He’s going to play," Harbaugh said of Jackson’s tendency to take off with the ball. "He’s going to play football. We’re not trying to run him. We’re not running those plays. He’s in the pocket, and he’s staying in the pocket a lot. It’s not like he’s trying to run, but sometimes … what are you going to do? You can’t hold him back forever."
It’s still unclear just how reliant the Ravens will be on Jackson’s rushing from a playbook perspective. However, his ability to make the most of a collapsing play makes him one of the most dangerous quarterbacks to contain.
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