The Ravens’ Triple Option Play Is a New Way for Them to Torture Defenses

In Monday’s Hot Clicks: The Ravens debut a fascinating offensive wrinkle, Dion Waiters has a bad trip and more.
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NFL defenses should be very scared of the Ravens

Ravens' Lamar Jackson and Robert Griffin III run triple option

Lamar Jackson continues to strengthen his case as the most electrifying player in the NFL.

Jackson and the Ravens trounced the lowly Bengals yesterday, behind a historically great performance from the second-year quarterback. Jackson completed 15 of 17 passes for 223 yards and three touchdowns. That works out to a perfect passer rating, making him only the second quarterback in history to have two perfect passing rating games in one season

Jackson also (rightly) drew comparisons to Michael Vick after this 47-yard touchdown run in the third quarter. He juked by one defender and sent two more tumbling to the turf with a vicious spin move. 

But the play I can’t stop thinking about is this one from the second quarter. Jackson, running back Mark Ingram and backup QB Robert Griffin III all lined up in the backfield and ran a college-style triple option play. 

No other team in the NFL can put two quarterbacks as fast as Jackson and Griffin on the field at the same time. It was only a 12-yard gain on a second in the first half of a game against the worst team in the NFL but teams around the league should be very wary of getting torched by this package in the future. 

Once you realize that the Ravens are willing to put two quarterbacks on the field at once, the possibilities are endless. The triple option one of the hardest plays to stop in football, and the Ravens can do more than just run the ball out of this look. They could run swing passes to Jackson or have Griffin throw the ball after taking a pitch. They could get the defense to bite extra hard on a play-action fake and then throw a deep bomb. 

I’m not saying the Ravens have to transform into a gimmick offense. They’ve done just fine running a fairly tradition offense that simply benefits from Jackson’s ability to escape pressure with his feet. But having the ability to get tricky in a key spot could be the most exciting moment of the playoffs. You know Bill Belichick would be licking his lips at the opportunity to draw something up to stop a two-QB package. 

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