Lamar Jackson is revved-up to work in offensive coordinator Todd Monken’s new system.
“Coach is basically giving us keys to the offense. Like I said, I’m loving it,” the Baltimore Ravens quarterback told reporters following Wednesday’s practice session.
Jackson joined teammates at OTAs this week, hitting the field Wednesday, where he’ll ramp up work in the new offense.
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“New offense. Had to get that down pat before the season rolls in,” Jackson said, noting he plans on being at the rest of the practices. “‘Cause the season is getting near. Even though we’ve got a couple of months left, but still. Just wanted to learn the new offense and get with my guys.”
The Ravens plan to move toward a more pass-friendly offense in 2023 after a ground-first approach under old offensive coordinator Greg Roman. Baltimore added receivers Odell Beckham Jr. and first-round pick Zay Flowers to bolster the passing attack.
“Just being able to throw the ball down the field,” Jackson said of the changes in the offense he’s noticed so far. “… Running can only take you so far. I feel like with this new era of teams and offenses in the league, I feel like we need that, and coach Todd Monken, what I’m seeing in this offense so far, it’s tremendous.”
In his first five seasons, Jackson has rushed for 4,437 yards, including two 1,000-plus rushing campaigns. Undeniably, his dynamic ability to scamper for electric gains shouldn’t be scrapped entirely from the offense — it gives defenses nightmares. But Jackson noted he expects less designed QB runs.
“Absolutely. Especially with the receivers that we have … it’s looking real good,” he said.
Jackson added that he also expects more freedom at the line to adjust than in previous seasons.
“You can change things when you want to,” he said. “You see the defense, and it’s not looking right to you — see some guy blitzing — you might want your receiver to do something different. Coach giving you the free will to do whatever you want to.”
With Jackson’s contract situation in the rearview, new pass-game fire-power added and a fresh system to deploy, the offense should pace Baltimore this season. Jackson getting reps in during voluntary OTAs will help the smooth-out process come September.
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