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The historic context of Lamar Jackson's 2019 fantasy football season

The historic context of Lamar Jackson's 2019 fantasy football season

The Ravens are the hottest team in football heading into Week 12 as a result of the play of their dynamic second-year quarterback, Lamar Jackson.

Coming into the 2019 season, there was offseason speculation that Ravens head coach John Harbaugh had reinvented his offense around Jackson and that it would be something unlike the NFL had seen in some time. 

In Week 1 against the Dolphins, Jackson and the Ravens picked apart Brian Flores' unit. Jackson finished with 5 passing touchdowns, completing 17-of his 20 passes for 324 yards (33.6 PTS). On the ground, however, Jackson was non-existent, rushing for just six yards on three attempts.  

In Week 2 he flipped the script in the home-opener against Kyler Murray and the Cardinals. Jackson finished with just 2 touchdowns, completing just 24-of-37 passes for 272 yards (30.9 PTS). This time, he was everywhere. Jackson accrued 120 rushing yards on 16 attempts to help the Ravens secure the 23-17 victory. 

In Week 3 the Ravens faced their first real test of 2019, traveling to Kansas City for a date with Patrick Mahomes and the Chiefs. Jackson struggled vertically in the contest, completing 22-of-43 passes for 267 yards, but excelled on the ground, rushing 8 times for 46 yards and a score (21.3 PTS). The Ravens were unable to keep their undefeated season going, falling 33-28 to the Chiefs.

In Week 4 Jackson and the Ravens disappointed yet again, falling at home to the Browns in a 40-25 loss. Jackson completed 24-of-34 passes for 247 yards and three touchdowns but also threw his first two interceptions of the year (24.5 PTS).

In Week 5, Jackson struggled on the road in Pittsburgh. The former Heisman Trophy winner completed 19 of 28 passes for a touchdown, but yet again played recklessly, and was picked off on three separate occasions (11.4 PTS).

In Week 6 the Ravens hosted the winless Cincinnati Bengals. The Ravens grabbed the narrow victory, winning 23-17. Jackson completed 21 passes for 33 yards but racked up 152 yards on the ground as well as a score on 19 attempts (30.6 PTS)

The Ravens then traveled to Seattle in Week 7 for a matchup with Russell Wilson, and Jackson couldn't get going through the air, only completing 9-of-20 passes for 143 yards, but yet again remained a factor on the ground, rushing 14 times for 116 yards and a touchdown in a surprising 30-16 victory (23.3 PTS)

In Week 9, the Ravens hosted the defending Super Bowl champs on Sunday Night Football. Jackson was electric, and Bill Belichick couldn't do a thing. Jackson completed 17-of-23 passes for 163 yards and a touchdown, as well as rushing for 61 yards on the ground and two scores as the Ravens put an end to the Patriots perfect season, handing them their first defeat (28.6 PTS).

In Week 10 against the Bengals, Jackson posted 288 all-purpose yards and three total touchdowns (33.4 PTS) and in Week 11 at home against the Texans, Jackson outdueled Deshaun Watson in a commanding win, posting 308 all-purpose yards and 4 total touchdowns (33.5 PTS). 

Jackson's numbers aren't just impressive. They are flawless.

Jackson is currently the No. 1 quarterback in fantasy football, and he doesn't look to be slowing down anytime soon.

Through 10 games, Lamar Jackson has racked up 2,258 Passing Yards, 19 Passing TDs, 5 INT, 788 Rushing Yards, 6 Rushing TDs, for a grand total of 271.1 PTS.

To put that into perspective, last year through his first ten games, Patrick Mahomes was sitting at 263.8 PTS. 

The top five greatest fantasy seasons for a quarterback are as follows:

1. Patrick Mahomes-Chiefs (2018): 5,097 Passing Yards, 50 Passing TDs 12 INT, 272 Rushing Yards, 2 Rushing TDs: 417.1 PTS

2. Peyton Manning-Broncos (2013): 5,477 Passing Yards, 55 Passing TDs, 10 INT, 32 Rushing Yards, 1 Rushing TD, 410 PTS

3. Aaron Rodgers-Packers (2011): 4,643 Passing Yards, 45 Passing TDs, 6 INT, 257 Rushing Yards, 3 Rushing TDs, 397.4 PTS

4. Drew Brees-Saints (2011): 5,476 Passing Yards, 46 Passing TDs, 14 INT, 86 Rushing Yards, 2 Rushing TDs, 391.6 PTS

5. Tom Brady-Patriots (2007): 4,806 Passing Yards, 50 Passing TD, 8 INT, 98 Rushing Yards, 2 Rushing TDs, 390 PTS

One of the most common players Jackson is compared to is Michael Vick, so let's take a look at his most successful fantasy football season, that took place during his time with the Philadelphia Eagles through his numbers in the first ten games:

Michael Vick (through first 10 games of 2010): 2,513 Passing Yards, 17 Passing TD, 4 INT, 483 Rushing Yards, 7 Rushing TD, 252.8 PTS.

Lamar Jackson (through 10 games of 2019): 2,258 Passing Yards, 19 Passing TDs, 5 INT, 788 Rushing Yards, 6 Rushing TDs, 271.1 PTS.

Baltimore has put the league on notice after taking down three heavyweights thus far with wins over Seattle, New England, and Houston.

Jackson, however, is just getting started. With 271.1 PTS thus far and six games to go, Jackson is on pace to score an additional 162.7 PTS by the end of the regular season, a whopping total of 433.8 PTS, putting him No. 1 all-time, for the highest-scoring fantasy season ever by a quarterback. 

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Ravens looking for playoff berth, AFC North title in trip to Buffalo

Ravens looking for playoff berth, AFC North title in trip to Buffalo

OWINGS MILLS, Md. — The Ravens haven’t had to stress too much over the last month or so of football.

Aside from a last-second win over the 49ers, the Ravens have climbed to the top of the AFC standings, and with four games to play, control their destiny for home-field advantage. 

But while the Bills aren’t in first place in their division, Sunday’s game at New Era Field could be one that has a large impact on the AFC standings. 

“We know the goal is to win the game, and what follows with that is what follows with that,” coach John Harbaugh said. “I did mention to the team, I said, ‘Where are we? We’re nowhere until we get there. And when we get there, we’ll be there. And we’ll take it from there.’ How’s that? That’s actually pretty good.

At 10-2, the Ravens are in pole position headed to the final quarter of the season. But the slope that they sit atop of is quite slippery. 

A loss to the 9-3 Bills would tie the two teams in the standings, with the Bills then owning the tiebreaker with just three games to play.

In that scenario, the AFC East champion Bills would have the inside track to home-field advantage in the playoffs over the Ravens. 

“We're not looking at everything like, ‘Oh my gosh, we're unstoppable,’ or anything like that,” Josh Bynes said. “Because it's any given Sunday, and we know how this league works. Any team can come out and beat you at any given moment. So, all we're focused on right now is just winning one game at a time and just taking it day by day and game by game.”

The Bills offense has took a turn for the better in recent weeks, as quarterback Josh Allen has thrown just one interception since Week 5. But the true strength of the Bills is their defense, which has kept them in games all season long. 

It’s yet another top defense that the Ravens will have to go through on their stretch of top defenses. 

“I think they're very talented,” Orlando Brown Jr. said. “I think they play very hard, and they've got a great scheme and a ton of great players in great positions. Their defensive backs are playing really well. They have a great group of front seven, again. It seems like we can't get a break, but it's all good.”

Buffalo’s defense ranks third in yards-allowed-per game (300) and third in pass yards allowed (195.8).

Baltimore is set to catch a break before the game even starts, as the weather in Buffalo is predicted to be mild — for New York. The projected high temperature is 45 degrees, and no snow is in the forecast.

“I don’t really care about cold games,” Lamar Jackson said. “I played at Louisville, so there were a lot of cold games there. And last year, I played here, so it is what it is. But I’d rather it not be raining and cold. That doesn’t mix. Cold and snow, I’ve never been in that. So, I’ll find out what it’s like, and I have to play ball.”

Jackson, against another of the league’s top defensive units, will look to add an exclamation point to his MVP resume. 

Should he do that and the Ravens win, they’ll clinch a playoff berth. And paired with a win over the Bills and a Steelers loss, they’ll have back-to-back AFC North titles. 

“It's going to be a good test,” Michael Pierce said. “I think it'll be another playoff-type atmosphere there on the road. They're 9-3. Josh Allen is playing really well, and we know the kind of (running) back Frank Gore is. And (Devin) Singletary is pretty smooth, too, so yes, they have a good team. It'll be a good game.” 

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Ravens at Bills Week 14: Date, time, TV channel, live stream, how to watch

Ravens at Bills Week 14: Date, time, TV channel, live stream, how to watch

The Baltimore Ravens (10-2) are heading north to take on the Buffalo Bills (9-3) in a Week 14 AFC Showdown that will likely have the energy of a playoff game.

The Ravens are coming off a buzzer-beater 20-17 win against the San Francisco 49ers that pushed their win streak to a franchise-record eight games. Leading the way for the Ravens is Lamar Jackson, who has cemented his MVP candidacy during a season in which he has taken the league by storm.

The Bills are coming off three wins of their own, most recently a 26-15 stomping of the Dallas Cowboys. Despite the impressive 9-3 record, the Bills' only win against a .500 or better team came on Thanksgiving Day against the then 6-5 Cowboys.

Here's what you should know about the game:

RAVENS at BILLS WEEK 14:

What: Week 14 of the NFL regular season

Who: Baltimore Ravens vs. Buffalo Bills

Where: New Era Field, Orchard Park, NY

When: Sunday, Dec. 8, at 1:00 p.m.

TV Channel: CBS

Live Stream: Stream on FuboTV 

Radio: WBAL New Radio 1090, 98Rock and 101.5 FM

Spread: Ravens, -5.5

Over/Under: 43.5

Weather: 44 degrees, mostly cloudy

RAVENS 2019 REGULAR SEASON SCHEDULE:

Week 1: Sun., 9/8 at Dolphins, 1:00 p.m. (W, 59-10)

Week 2: Sun., 9/15 vs. Cardinals, 1:00 p.m. (W, 23-17)

Week 3: Sun., 9/22 at Chiefs. 1:00 p.m. (L, 33-28)

Week 4: Sun., 9/29 vs. Browns, 1:00 p.m. (L, 40-25)

Week 5: Sun., 10/6 at Steelers, 1:00 p.m. (W (OT), 26-23)

Week 6: Sun., 10/13 vs. Bengals, 1:00 p.m. (W, 23-17)

Week 7: Sun., 10/20 at Seahawks, 4:25 p.m. (W, 30-16)

Week 8: BYE week

Week 9: Sun., 11/3 vs. Patriots, 8:20 p.m. (W, 37-20)

Week 10:  Sun., 11/10 at Bengals, 1:00 p.m. (W, 49-13)

Week 11: Sun., 11/17 vs. Texans, 1:00 p.m. (W, 41-7)

Week 12: Mon., 11/25 at Rams, 8:15 p.m. (W, 45-6)

Week 13: Sun., 12/1 vs. 49ers, 1:00 p.m. (W, 20-17)

Week 14: Sun., 12/8 at Bills, 1:00 p.m.

Week 15: Thu., 12/12 vs. Jets, 8:20 p.m.

Week 16: Sun., 12/22 at Browns, 1:00 p.m.

Week 17: Sun., 12/29 vs. Steelers, 1:00 p.m.

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