Steve Seufert | May 14th, 2020
Lamar Jackson took the league by storm last year with electricity. He won the MVP pretty handily after accounting for 43 total touchdowns, 1,200 rushing yards, and 3,127 passing yards. He embraced the city and they’ve embraced him back. The Ravens have their quarterback and star of the future, and they’ve surrounded him with talent. I expect this team to compete for the Super Bowl and win more than 11 games. Here are five bold predictions that I think will help make that happen.
Lamar Jackson becomes the first quarterback to win back to back MVP awards since Peyton Manning
Jackson is an incredible talent and I believe his running ability is even more impressive than we already think. His elusiveness in the open field keeps him from being squared up and injured. Even when he is tackled, it looks graceful on most occasions. The bottom line is that I don’t think his volume as a runner will be an issue. I’m not concerned with injuries.
Now we move on to the arm talent, and Jackson has a lot of it. He can stretch you vertically and horizontally leaving you on your toes. When the play breaks down, his awareness allows him to extend plays and make off-scheduled highlight reel decisions. I’m going to predict Jackson surpasses each statistical total he put up last season and the Ravens make a super bowl appearance.
Lamar said he didn’t know when he broke Mike Vick’s rushing record vs. the Jets.
This was his reaction when Mark Andrews broke the franchise TE touchdown record in the same game.
— B/R Gridiron (@brgridiron) December 20, 2019
Bradley Bozeman makes his first Pro Bowl out of nowhere, or maybe not
Last offseason, the former sixth-round pick was permanently named the starting left guard. Bozeman didn’t just start, he played pretty well on a dominant offense. He’s a really good run blocker and his pass protection has improved in the NFL. I think with drafting two offensive guards, Bozeman can kick inside. Center is the position he played in college and due to his athletic profile, he projected better at the position.
When we talk about Pro Bowl offensive lineman, it’s usually the ones on good teams that stand out. What fan would want to vote in a center from the worst rushing attack in the league? I expect the Ravens to dominate and lead the league in rushing. The spotlight will be on that Ravens offensive line and I think Bozeman can shine wherever he plays.
Gotta be tough to be a run stuffing nickel corner in the NFL. Bradley Bozeman blows Mike Hilton up. Price you sometimes pay to have 19 TFL over the last three seasons (tied most in NFL by a DB). #Steelers pic.twitter.com/FBQuDiedAT
— Alex Kozora (@Alex_Kozora) October 9, 2019
Mark Andrews explodes for 1,000 receiving yards and double-digit touchdowns
Andrews had a coming out party during the 2019 season. He posted a breakout stat line of 64/852/10 in his second year out of Oklahoma. I think Andrews is primed to be the next great tight end and could jump into that George Kittle and Travis Kelce tier. A lot of that has to do with his own talent, but he couldn’t be in a better situation. Andrews is going to continue being a favorite for Jackson and this guy is going to flourish.
Mark Andrews catches the TD from Lamar and does Nick Bosa’s flag wave as his celebration 🌶
— Bleacher Report (@BleacherReport) December 1, 2019
Jaylon Ferguson pleasantly surprises the city of Baltimore with eight sacks
Is Ferguson the biggest winner of the offseason or what? I thought for sure with the uncertainty of Matthew Judon‘s future that the front office would address the position. They did sign Pernell McPhee but it’s not a guarantee that he plays or even makes the roster.
I wasn’t a big fan of Ferguson coming out of college. His athletic profile didn’t cross any professional athlete thresholds. It was honestly embarrassing. However, one thing I did like was the consistent effort and motor. Ferguson was productive in college for a reason and I think college sack production translates. Just look at Shaquil Barrett of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. With the Ravens often leading in football games, teams will be forced to throw the football. This will ultimately give the high motored Ferguson more opportunity.
He's done it! Jaylon Ferguson is the NCAA sack leader! pic.twitter.com/ZvU6SG98Wi
— LA Tech Sports (@LATechSports) December 23, 2018
Malik Harrison surpasses any of your rookie year expectations and outshines Patrick Queen
This was a tough one because Harrison has to compete and win the job from veteran L.J. Fort. I know, I know, Fort isn’t very good at football and Harrison shouldn’t have a problem winning the job. But when does he win the job? It’s hard to project stat totals with those questions.
I just know one thing, Harrison can play. He was one of my favorite players in the 2020 NFL draft class and if you’ve read some of my Ravens work, you know I love him. His tackle radius, effort, and instincts will make him a threat to flirt with 100 tackles per season. He also has some juice as a pass rusher and shows nuanced hand usage, especially for a linebacker. All eyes are on Queen but Harrison has the upper hand in experience and will shine year one.
what's scarier, Chase Young flying at you or Malik Harrison lowering his shoulder at you? pic.twitter.com/lnxhQ0Bxti
— Land-Grant Holy Land (@Landgrant33) October 19, 2019
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