With 10 days until the 2018 NFL Draft, quarterback Lamar Jackson is set to visit the Ravens this week, per Ian Rapoport of NFL Network.
As the pre-draft visits wrap up this week, #Oklahoma QB Baker Mayfield flies to Denver later today for a #Broncos visit, then it’s on to the #AZCardinals after that. Meanwhile, #Louisville QB Lamar Jackson is at the #Ravens this week.— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) April 16, 2018
The former Heisman Trophy winner is a projected first-round pick as he has proven to have success in the air and on the ground.
While at Louisville, Jackson had 9,043 passing yards and 69 touchdowns. He also rushed for 4,132 yards and 50 touchdowns. His NFL draft profile compares him to Michael Vick.
The Ravens are in search of Joe Flacco's successor, but spending a first-round pick on a quarterback when there are other glaring needs is up in the air. However, assistant general manager Eric DeCosta isn't ruling out the possibility.
"I feel like if there is a guy there that we think is really too good to pass up, we're going to take him," DeCosta told the team's website on the chance of drafting a quarterback in the first-round.
At their pre-draft press conference, GM Ozzie Newsome and DeCosta kept reiterating we could be surprised by who they pick at No. 16, if they do at all.
While Jackson's numbers are impressive, he continues to be considered a late first-round pick as his build isn't up to typical NFL QB standards and scouts are concerned with his accuracy. What he does have in his favor is speed.
While fans are hoping for an offensive weapon, having Jackson learn under Flacco for a year (and maybe RGIII?) could rev up some excitement.
Robert Griffin III went from Heisman Trophy winner, to second-overall pick, to Offensive Rookie of the Year, to unemployed, to backup quarterback all in the matter of six years.
That's a rollercoaster of a career for a 28-year old, but RGIII is fully embracing the opportunity the Ravens have presented him with.
“I feel like I knew coming into this situation that this is Joe’s [Flacco] team," Griffin said at a press conference Wednesday.
"I understood that when I came in to work out; I understood that when I signed. I’m excited about the opportunity to learn from him. Whatever capacity the coaches ask me to help, that’s what I’m here to do. I’m here to compete, and I’m here to get better every single day – work hard. I think they saw that from me in the workout and in our general conversations together. I think they realize I’m ready for the opportunity and I’m ready for this role – whatever that role may be.”
Finding a backup quarterback that you can put some faith in during a time of desperation in today's league is a hard find, with the exception of the 2017 Philadelphia Eagles.
While Griffin hasn't played since January of 2017, he offers legitimate experience that isn't being offered by typical backups.
"I feel like I’ve been able to get a better grasp of how to play the game in the NFL, what coaches are looking for. I think that’s a benefit, whereas in 2012 when I came in, it was more so learning everything on the fly and just going out and playing. Now I feel like I have to ability to go out and play and also know what I’m doing, be able to protect myself better, get the ball to the guys that need to get the ball and help a team win – in whatever way that is.”
The Ravens signed RGIII on a one-year contract worth $1 million - we're assuming- with hopes he'll never see the field during the regular season. Griffin made it clear he understands that role, but is looking forward to learning how to lead a team under a ten-year veteran.
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“Most of my interactions with Joe have been at midfield. I really do look forward to getting in the quarterback room with him. It’s a great opportunity for me. I still feel like I’m a young player. I’m 28, but I feel like I’m 25. He’s been through a lot of things in his career, been to the pinnacle and won a Super Bowl – Super Bowl MVP. I think that’s a great opportunity for me to learn and learn from him, and to just see the way that he attacks the game of football, the way he attacks the meeting room, practice, interacting with teammates – all those types of things – the way he leads."
The RGIII saga in Baltimore is an open book right now, one that could come with an interesting ending.