Ravens’ Lamar Jackson rips ESPN reporter apart for “defamation” of character
Baltimore Ravens quarterback Lamar Jackson has found himself in an uncomfortable situation after a reporter claimed Jackson tweeted an “anti-gay” phrase.
Following Week 12’s loss to the Jacksonville Jaguars, Jackson responded to a fan on Twitter who had said the Ravens should let the star quarterback walk this upcoming offseason.
In a now-deleted tweet, Jackson went off on the fan in a profanity-laced tirade, saying that the fan “never did s**t but eat d**k,” among other insults.
Jackson was likely just letting off steam after Sunday’s defeat as the Ravens dropped crucial points in the AFC North title race and bigger playoff picture. One reporter, however, took Jackson’s comments and ran away with them, claiming that Jackson’s tweet contained an “anti-gay” phrase.
On Monday, ESPN’s Jamison Hensley wrote this opening paragraph in an article about Jackson’s social media antics:
"Baltimore Ravens quarterback Lamar Jackson responded to a social media post Sunday that criticized his performance with a profanity-laced tweet that included an anti-gay phrase."
Jackson was quick to respond and tweeted that Hensley’s article was a “defamation of [his] character.”
Ravens’ Lamar Jackson becomes embroiled in controversy after a reporter’s errant accusation
Given the content of Jackson’s tweet, one could see how Hensley was indeed “reaching” and shouldn’t have accused Jackson of being homophobic.
While Jackson’s tweet seemed impulsive and out of character, his retort didn’t include any homophobic slurs and could hardly be considered “anti-gay.” As long as Jackson wasn’t spewing hate or prejudices against anyone, he was within his rights to use Twitter as he saw fit.
Should Jackson have so nastily clapped back at the disgruntled fan? Probably not.
Many NFL players turn their social media off for this reason, and Jackson achieved nothing by resorting to vulgar and crude insults.
That being said, ESPN reporter Jamison Hensley made a serious and unfounded implication about Jackson’s personal beliefs, and Jackson’s claims of “defamation” are just.
Things have gotten quite ugly for the Ravens’ star quarterback after Week 12’s loss, but Jackson should be able to bounce back and use the controversy as motivation, if nothing else.