(Photo of Lamar Jackson: Trevor Ruszkowski/USA TODAY Sports)
NASHVILLE - The monkey is finally off of Lamar Jackson’s back.
With his fifth-seeded Baltimore Ravens making the trip to Nashville for a Wild Card Round matchup with the fourth-seeded Tennessee Titans, the former Louisville quarterback was able to avenge last season’s playoff loss to the same team, upsetting the Titans 20-13 for the first NFL Playoffs win of his career.
Overcoming an early interception, he was able to complete 17 of his 24 pass attempts for 179 yards, while also rushing 136 yards and a touchdown. The Baltimore defense also came through, holding the NFL’s leading rusher in Derrick Henry to just 40 yards, and quarterback Ryan Tannehill to 165 yards and the Titans’ only touchdown - an early red zone toss to AJ Brown.
The victory avenges a heartbreaking loss from last season, when Titans marched into Baltimore and left with with a 28-12 Divisional Round victory to reach the AFC Championship. The Ravens had the league’s best record at 14-2 to earn a first round bye, with Jackson being named that season’s NFL MVP.
Including that game, the 6-foot-2, 212-pound duel threat signal caller had an 0-2 record in the playoffs entering today’s game against Tennessee. His other loss came during his first year in the league, losing 23-17 to the Los Angeles Chargers in the 2018 Wild Card Round.
After struggling in the first half of the 2020 season, the former Heisman Trophy winner rallied down the stretch, guiding Baltimore to five straight victories to clinch a Wild Card berth. He ended the regular season with 3,762 total yards, 33 total touchdowns, and became the first quarterback to rush for over 1,000 yards in consecutive seasons.
Baltimore’s next opponent for the Divisional Round is dependent on tonight’s Browns-Steelers game. If the Browns win, the Ravens will face the second-seeded Buffalo Bills (13-3). If the Steelers win, they will face the Kansas City Chiefs (14-2), who are the top seed in the AFC.
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