Ravens’ Lamar Jackson could re-enter the MVP conversation in 2022

Ravens, Lamar Jackson (Photo by Scott Taetsch/Getty Images)
Ravens, Lamar Jackson (Photo by Scott Taetsch/Getty Images) /

Baltimore Ravens quarterback Lamar Jackson won league MVP once, and he could do it again two years later in 2022. What’s stopping him?

For one, his injury history. Jackson missed the final stretch of the 2021 season due to an ankle injury, and he’s already considered more injury-prone than others given his dual-threat quarterback role.

Jackson will need to recover to full strength to enjoy another MVP-worthy season, but the Ravens have also done their part in supplying him with solid offensive weapons and a beefed-up O-line.

Though the Raven still arguably lack a veteran wide receiver, they have plenty of young stars who could help Jackson not only lead Baltimore into a playoff-contending comeback season, but put together an individually impressive season for himself as well.

Sports Illustrated’s Connor Orr predicted that Jackson would set a career-high in passing yards and be considered for league MVP this year:

"“With an offense doubling down on the best of what Jackson does, the quarterback will be more comfortable than he’s been in years. While he won’t top 36 passing touchdowns, he will score more than 40 combined rushing and passing touchdowns.”"

The Ravens could see Lamar Jackson return to his 2019 MVP self this season

In his 2019 MVP season, Jackson threw for 3,127 yards with a 66 percent pass completion rate and recorded a league-high 36 passing touchdowns.

As Orr notes, Jackson may not be able to record quite as many passing touchdowns this year with his current pass-catching corps, but he could tally up more rushing touchdowns to reach 40 combined rushing and passing touchdowns.

This doesn’t really seem that far-fetched — admittedly, Jackson recorded just 16 passing touchdowns and two rushing touchdowns in a career-worst 2021 season, yet he’ll have a much stronger starting supporting cast this year.

J.K. Dobbins and Gus Edwards will spearhead the rushing attack (Orr predicts the Ravens will have two 1,000-yard rushers) while Jackson remains a dangerous threat on the ground, too.

Whereas 2021 featured a timeshare between veteran backs, this season should include Dobbins, Edwards, and even a few young studs dominating the running game.

In 2019, Jackson ran for a quarterback-record of 1,206 yards, and his running back-in-crime Mark Ingram ran for 1,018 yards.

If Jackson, Dobbins, and Edwards are all healthy, there’s a good chance at least two of them could go for 1,000 rushing yards.

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Racking up rushing yardage won’t get Lamar Jackson into the MVP conversation alone, but it’s a good start.