Aaron Rodgers Tells Lamar Jackson He Loves Watching Him Play; Advises to Slide

Mike Chiari@mikechiariFeatured ColumnistAugust 16, 2019

Baltimore Ravens quarterback Robert Griffin III, left, and quarterback Lamar Jackson, center, talk to Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers after an NFL football preseason game, Thursday, Aug. 15, 2019, in Baltimore. The Ravens won 26-13. (AP Photo/Nick Wass)
Nick Wass/Associated Press

Following the Baltimore Ravens' 26-13 preseason victory over the Green Bay Packers on Thursday, future Hall of Fame Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers offered second-year Ravens quarterback Lamar Jackson a word of advice.

According to ESPN's Jamison Hensley, Rodgers praised Jackson but also preached self preservation: "I love watching you play, man. That was pretty spectacular. ... Have a great season. Slide a little bit."

In response, Jackson smiled and said, "I got you, baby."

During his discussion with Jackson, Rodgers was likely referencing an 18-yard touchdown run by Jackson that was nullified by a penalty. Jackson juked through the defense and hurdled a defender en route to the end zone:

Baltimore Ravens @Ravens

Juke man, Juke man, yeah that’s @Lj_era8‼️ https://t.co/tvC7mkVqiX

Overall, Jackson finished 6-of-10 for 58 yards passing and rushed twice for 14 yards in Baltimore's victory.

As a rookie last season, Jackson took over the starting job from veteran Joe Flacco midway through the year and finished with a 6-1 record, which was good enough to get Baltimore into the playoffs.

Jackson completed 58.2 percent of his passes for 1,201 yards, six touchdowns and three interceptions, but he did most of his damage with his legs. Despite starting just seven games, Jackson set a single-season NFL record for a quarterback with 147 carries, which allowed him to amass 695 yards and five touchdowns on the ground.

Per Hensley, Ravens owner Steve Bisciotti said in May that fans would be "pleasantly surprised" that Jackson won't run "20 times a game." Meanwhile, Ravens head coach John Harbaugh said to "take the over" with regard to Jackson's rushing attempts when told that Carolina Panthers quarterback Cam Newton's career high in rushes is 139.

There is little doubt that Baltimore's offense will be run-based with Jackson and running backs Mark Ingram, Gus Edwards and Kenneth Dixon leading the way.

Ravens backup quarterback Robert Griffin III was never the same after suffering a knee injury during a playoff game in his rookie season, and Jackson would likely be wise to heed Rodgers' advice if he wants to avoid a similar fate.