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What is the value of Lamar Jackson if he can’t play in January?


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Jason Cole of Outkick joins Nestor to discuss all things Lamar Jackson, contract, health and future with Baltimore Ravens.


quarterback, game, playoffs, play, lamar jackson, ravens, lamar, throw, deal, point, russell wilson, draft, year, jimmy garoppolo, week, wide receiver, football, contract, talking, mccaffrey

Nestor Aparicio  00:01

Looking back at wn st Towson, Baltimore and Baltimore positive or positively taking the Maryland crabcake door back out on the road we’re gonna be at GNA Coney Island hot dog and whitewash. No longer an island town after a few generations Andy moved the restaurant out to the county and I’ve been meaning to get out there I’m gonna have some rabid scratch offs to get away from the Maryland lottery holiday cast drop as well as a few remaining ravens scratch also we’re still remaining in season at this point also brought to you by our friends at wind donation. 866 90 days you give them a call you by two, you get two free and 0% financing. I always make this guy like he comes in sometimes when the ravens are good. And back when I was a real journalist, we’d see each other he’s famous 10 years ago since he utilize the dancing on the edge of chaos. I welcome back the great Jason Cole now of out kick formerly have a lot of places but as always written great books, including one on John Elway in recent years. How are you my friend? Happy play? Oh, Happy Super wildcard weekend to you Jason

Jason Cole  01:05


Cole. I’m fantastic. Nestor. How are you doing?

Nestor Aparicio  01:09

Well not headed to Cincinnati to eat the late night chili here this weekend. But certainly in regard to Lamar. And in regard to this game and this franchise. And you’ve been at this since back before Purple Rain one covering the National Football League. This is a pickle of a circumstance all the way around with negotiating with where Deshaun Watson’s contract was and where his injuries are and where his talents lie and where the tax situation in Florida might lie. And then they got to go win a playoff game on Sunday night. And nobody knows whether he’s going to play or how he would play. And certainly these last couple of weeks have been a weird time to be around the ravens and asking John Harbaugh questions.

Jason Cole  01:55

Yeah, that’s when you don’t know what’s going on with your quarterback, you kind of don’t know what’s going on with your entire organization. Right? That’s how important that player is. And as of now, it’s unclear is he gonna play? Is he not gonna play? Does it behoove him to play? Right? And if you’re Lamar Jackson. And if you’re not completely healthy, and you already have a reputation, one of the things that you’re criticized for, is that you’re not good in the playoffs. If you go out in this game, and you’re not good in the playoffs, how much are you hurting your value and confirming a reputation when you don’t necessarily have control over? Or do you take that head on and say, I’m going to fight this and be ready and do whatever I have to do? We’re going to go win a game in Cincinnati, even though we’re not probably not as good as the Bengals at this point in time. And I’ll prove to everybody that I’m worth the money. I think that the wise counsel and unfortunately, Mr. Jackson does not have counts. He just has himself and his mother and a few other people he does not have wise counsel would tell you to not play in this game. The danger in that is that if you don’t play in this game, do you then take the reputation because now you’re back to back years where you miss significant portions of the season. Right.

Nestor Aparicio  03:30

They didn’t even get to this point last year. He didn’t get to not play in a playoff game last


Jason Cole  03:34

year. Right. Right. And so like you’re damned if you do you’re damned. I think if you’re Lamar Jackson, I hope he plays I like a because I think he makes the game far more interesting. I think he gives them a chance to win. If he doesn’t play they don’t win. That’s that they have no shot. Even but even if he does play like I just think right now the Bengals are the better team. Yeah and by a by a pretty significant margin. Because if you look at the over the overall rosters, the overall rosters favor the Bengals and the matchups favor the Bengals

Nestor Aparicio  04:12

just you and I’ve been at this a long time. You’ve been a guest on my program at least 15 years I’ve known you and we I always try to call you around playoff time because you do look at the whole league and I love having you on and the wisdom that you bring, you know into these circumstances but I don’t have a remember. And I’ve been on here 31 year as I was talking playoff football before we had a team here. I don’t ever remember this week talking about whether a quarterback should or shouldn’t play based on contract, long term contract. Sometimes it’s the backup. Sometimes it’s held sometimes it’s that but I’ve never had anybody say the agent should be telling him not to play because there’s no upside here for him in regard to performance. The only upside here is beat mahomes The following week beat John challenge this week. And he sort of knows he doesn’t have the horses around him and peers. And you mentioned not having counsel. He doesn’t not just have counsel. He doesn’t have representation. When the team is outselling NFL Network, he’ll be back on Christmas. And now it’s January 10. And he’s not back and the coach is sort of hemmed and hawed that all of this has been for him, I guess, damaging to some point, but maybe damaging enough to get himself to someplace he wants to play in a tax circumstance. Where a Miami we get him, the $250 million. He wants, somebody will give him that money. But I don’t think it’s going to be Steve.

Jason Cole  05:44

No, I don’t think look, if the Ravens wanted to pay him that would have been they don’t want to pay him. I think they see the injury downside on him as a player, they see that, you know, once what was once fast will slow down. That’s just how the NFL works. And he has not improved as a passer to the point where he’s a he’s not a dangerous passer. He’s a good one. But also his performance against better defenses at playoff times, you know that we haven’t seen that in a couple of years, but it has never been good. Right? So these are all the downsides. The upside is that he makes you competitive. He’s he’s one of the most unique quarterbacks in the league, and I thought was worth paying a certain amount of money to a healthy portion of money 150 Close to $200 million, guaranteed because he gets you to that dance. And then the question is, do the circumstances once you get to the dance, allow you to win a championship, you know, do mahomes And not and Allen knock each other off and get you get past burrow in that one. And then you only have to be one of those. You know, the problem is that it’s not just Boro. mahomes and Allen now it’s Bernal mahomes. Allen. And look what Trevor Lawrence is doing. Right and look at what Justin Herbert is doing. Right. And the you know, the AFC is getting increasingly loaded with quarterbacks who are simply just better passers, better performers in the pocket in normal situations, then Lamar will probably never be now as far as taxes go where he ends up. Will Miami bed. I don’t know. I don’t think he fits well, with being illustrate what Mike McDaniel was trying to do. But he would certainly get butts in the seats. Right? He get people down in South Florida excited, right? Do you got to tamp if Brady leaves? Again, he probably put butts in the seats and get people excited. He’d be worth he’d be worth the money from that perspective. Do you go to Nashville? That’s the ray. I don’t know that he’s variables kind of quarterback. But if you pair Lamar Jackson with Derrick Henry for two years. Oh, man, are you are you mowing people down? You know, and again, you’re winning and games to get yourself into the playoffs? If you have that combination, you’re probably not ruling the division, because Jacksonville has Trevor Lawrence. But you’re you’re getting yourself in possession of laughs and sometimes that’s enough.

Nestor Aparicio  08:40


JC Cole is here from out kick. You can find him out on Twitter anywhere a great football books are written and served at this point, um, with the wisdom you have and all of these drafts you’ve covered. And resurrection projects for franchises that go from worst to first and they draft their Trevor Lawrence or they draft their job or their Peyton Manning. Throughout all of this. The Ravens went a different way with Lamar right and saying we’re gonna Zig when they zag. And I remember way back five years ago when hardball called this an experiment, right? Because it really kind of was an experiment because nobody’s won this way. At this level, maybe college fine, but not here with the RPO system. The notion that you’re going to run in the linebackers 160 180 220 times a year, and stay upright and be healthy. When we’re drinking eggnog and celebrating the holidays and getting through New Years and getting to the field. All these catchy write books about the Elway’s. They all have one thing in common. They were all playing football games in January because they took care of their bodies, their teams took care of them. Every design of modern football was meant to protect the quarterback not for the quarterback to seek contact, because the circumstances are one hit one play and you go from eight and three to who’s Tyler how ugly and who’s this Anthony Brown guy, right? And your chances of winning are zero with your backup quarterback almost no matter who your backup quarterback is other than Nick Foles and Jeff Hostetler over the course of history, right? But was this a bad idea for the Ravens? Or was there a reason other No, no,

Jason Cole  10:15

no. This is sometimes you got to play with with the Kandra. dealt, right. And Andrew, we’re dealt is, you have what a late round pick, you’re actually you had an early second round pick you out of value fall to you in a draft, and you made the most of that value. And you took a shot, right? Look at this is a game we’re only one out of the 32. It’s a totally dysfunctional measure of what success is right? Because only one out of 32 are considered successful every year. Right? The truth is, the Ravens have been extraordinarily successful with Lamar Jackson, his quarterback, they put themselves in a position to be competitive. They’ve done this. They they’ve done extraordinary things on offense that are very entertaining, right. The problem is that the system doesn’t last that long. The reasons that you talked about which is running quarterbacks last that long in the NFL guys who get 100 carries, or more. There’s only been a handful in the history of the league. We’ve had more than two seasons with 100 carries and I think that list is Cam Newton, Lamar Jackson and maybe maybe Michael Vick right now even not even Russell Wilson had more than 100 carries twice in his career. You know, the other quarterbacks like the Elway’s, Steve Young’s, those guys, they learned eventually to not run. And they did not they, they learned to play from the pocket. You know, that’s, that’s just not the Mars game. You know, you were hoping that he would progress to be a better thrower of the football. He’s okay. He’s not great. And for him to make the transition from being a running quarterback, to being more of a pocket presence, he had to improve that throwing style, and it’s just never really happened. To the extent that you can be successful in my view of the playoffs, but what they tried overwhelmingly was a was was a smart, be done with conviction. And I’ve said this to John Harbaugh, like they, they went all in to make this work for March, Lamar Jackson. Okay, in terms of designing your offense, getting a tight end, getting a good tight end doing all of these things, these things, they tried to make it work. The reality is that look, just it doesn’t. You know, defensive players are big and strong and ugly and fast and nasty. And they knock your quarterback around, and he gets hurt. And if you’re going to play this style, your quarterback is going to get hurt. That’s just the way it’s going to be. It was true when Bobby Douglas was doing it back in the 1960s. And most of your list listeners are probably gonna go Bobby who?

Nestor Aparicio  13:30

I remember Bobby Douglas at the Chicago Bears.

Jason Cole  13:33

Exactly, but very few people do. Why? Because he had like one season like this and got a crap knocked out of it. Okay. And most guys get the crap knocked out. It doesn’t work. That’s all.


Nestor Aparicio  13:48

Jason Cole is here. And you know, the other side of this is how to your point full conviction change in the offense, bringing in Rome and we’re gonna we’re gonna RPO we’re gonna Zig they’re gonna zag all of that, then you have to get wide receivers right. So whether it’s drafting Hollywood Brown, who falls in love with the quarterback and still wants off the island because he wants to be paid and he wants the ball more. They signed the willie Snead to the world to crack down and block and that’s this is an attractive place for a blocking wide receiver but they’re that’s like a jumbo shrimp Right? Like they there’s no such thing as a blocking wide receiver, wide receiver. They all want to catch the ball. They were never going to throw the ball a lot here that never made it attractive. And then they draft Bateman and he gets injured. So the recruitment of the wide receiver in this mystery offense that catches 12 balls a week and is the Antonio Brown or the difference maker wide receiver. You don’t want to throw the ball 30 times you know.

Jason Cole  14:51

Well, I mean yes. But some of the reason that you don’t want to throw the ball 30 times is that you realize the quarterback when you do that is As if you throw the ball 30 times, how many of those are going to be erratic throws that get picked? Right? Because he hasn’t learned how to how to be a better thrower. All right. Some of this is on Lamar. Some of this is on them. But a lot of is on Lamar, because Lamar has stubbornly believed that he’s a good thrower of the football. And he’s not. He’s not a terrible throw. He’s not Tim Tebow. Don’t get me wrong. Tim Tebow was a terrible thrower of the football in ways that matter if pro offensive, Lamar is not a great one. So that is why Lamar is one of the most unique players in the history of the game. Because he is good enough in regular season situations to make you competitive and get you into the playoffs. He is not good enough at throwing the football to be a guy that you lean on to throw it 30 to 35 times a game. And then in playoff situations depend on him to make critical 3637 38 throws that require the ability to manipulate the ball and put it in certain in tight windows that are just really, really difficult. So it’s he’s incredibly unique player, and he’s the kind of player who if I’m, depending on, depending on if I’m coaching a football team, I would pay him money, I pay him pretty good money. In fact, I might even if I’m the ravens, I might franchise this after this year, if I think that he’s actually going to show up and put his heart into it, and keep them on a one year deal. He’s not gonna like that, but he’s gonna be resistant to it. But I might be willing to do that to say, Take take another shot with this.

Nestor Aparicio  16:57

train me to wherever you’re trading me wherever they’re gonna give me guaranteed money?

Jason Cole  17:01


Probably he probably will. The problem that you don’t know. And this is the wild Heron situation is that he does not have counsel doesn’t have an agent doesn’t have representation to help guide him through this. So a lot of these decisions are made purely on Deshaun Watson to making that kind of money, I deserve what Deshaun Watson got. You have to learn how to massage that to get what you want. And the other side of it is, again, we talked about these other teams wanting him. And again, I think there’s probably a fair number of teams that will want it because he makes you competitive. Do you want to also pay him $230 million. And commit that to that’s where teams go. Because those guarantees those big guarantees. Deshaun Watson didn’t play very well, this year at Cleveland. Russell Wilson did not play well in Denver. Kyler Murray did not play well in Arizona after getting these gigantic contracts.

Nestor Aparicio  18:03

Cuz he’s trying to prove himself and as next week to do it. Right. Well, I

Jason Cole  18:06

mean, he’s on a shorter term deal. And it’s not quite it’s not quite as exorbitant. But what Kirk Cousins is what he is, he’s just a mediocre quarterback. He’s not special. The other guys Deshaun Watson has special talent. Russell Wilson has proven to be a special player over the course of his career. He earned that earn that Kyler Murray,

Nestor Aparicio  18:25

remember kind of causing Scott guaranteed money that he didn’t. He was not top of class.


Jason Cole  18:32

It was not $200 million. It was $80 million. And then a second and the second contract with the other. We’re talking $200 million. That kind of money where you it’s like Aaron Rodgers Aaron Rodgers got a contract. You can’t cut him. You can’t move on. You can’t change your roster. And effect change even if you want to. And that’s what the Shaun Watson deal the Russell Wilson deal, the air Rogers deal, that Kyler Murray deal all of those deals, say I am married to this quarterback no matter what. And maybe have a workout you know, again, Deshaun Watson after a year, half of the season to come back and play, he may regain his ability to get sharp again. Russell Wilson may figure it out whether wherever the next coach is Kyler Murray Vegas healthy, who knows? Lamar Jackson, Baltimore doesn’t want to get in to that kind of contract. And I’m not sure who else will at this point in time. Want to get in on that contract because of for all the things that Lamar Jackson is great at. There are a couple of things. He is not great at which you have to figure out how to overcome because he hasn’t figured out how to overcome them

Nestor Aparicio  19:47

yet. Part of that’s having a having a core around him and we’re going to figure that out this week. JC Cole was here. He’s JC call six two out on Twitter. You can find him at our kick as well covering the National Football League as well as anyone and Putting his books on things. John Elway as well as from time to time sharing some some dietary recipes and tips and great things to eat along life’s

Jason Cole  20:09

Hi Sorry, no great food I can I can tell you that great food dietary, your you might want to go to somebody else. Well, you know,

Nestor Aparicio  20:17


Springsteen’s on tour, right? And now that I’ve been thrown out of the league, I get to go around to places like Tampa Atlanta, Houston, Austin. Yeah, I’m gonna go see Bruce a little bit. So Matt on the road, maybe I will be reaching back to you. Last thing for you, though, as we enter the playoffs. Give me your favorite story, looking at these playoffs and where you go. There’s there’s storyline in every one of these cities. But where are you looking to say where this team making a championship game two weeks from now?

Jason Cole  20:47

Well, San Francisco. Yeah, I mean, everybody knows about the defense although the defense has had some hiccups, like they give a ton of points to the Raiders, and Jared stedham. And they’ve had these moments where they you know, they gave it a 77 yarder to AJ green. They gave him a 75 yards against Miami and Brent sherfield. So they’ve had some hiccups here occasionally, right. But they got a lot of talent on defense, right. But Brock Purdy, like you talked about a kid who can process and knows answers to what he’s supposed to do. And he’s not super talented, right? Like, he would not win any kind of athletic contest against the mahomes of the world, the Rogers of the world, Lamar Jackson’s of the world, he would never look spectacular in that way. He looks more like a guy who’s playing quarterback on your intramural football team. Right? You know, I mean, He’s six feet tall. Not, you know, but he has a special talent in terms of processing information on the field, and getting you into the right play and adjusting to make plays work. He’s surrounded by cogs that fit perfectly with what he wants to do the tight end and kettle, they’ve got Samuel back, he’s made IOQ 1000 yard receiver and really a dangerous guy with you know, the over the middle throws and he’s gotten McCaffrey to feed the ball to either handing it to him or throwing him screams Right. Like they are. They’re really fast. Now, is that going to be good enough? If they go and they play against? You know, assuming that cowboys are really show up, show up for a game and Michael Parsons can get in his grill and and create havoc for him? How will they handle that? Or if you go to Philadelphia, right. And you have to go up against that really heavy front that they have, you know, the kid from Georgia that they brought in, they got Fletcher Cox and dama consumers there. Now Brandon Graham is a veteran with you know, I mean, all of those guys could present physical problems for a guy like pretty does he have an answer for that? I’m fascinated by the story. Now, obviously, there are some other highlight matchups, you know, Justin Herbert against Trevor Lawrence in the first round of the playoffs is awesome, right. The collection of quarterbacks who exist in the AFC, the Lamar Jackson, the story that we’ve talked about, you know, ad infinitum. Does Tom Brady have another running up left, but the fresh face interesting, fascinating story to me is Brock Purdy. And does this kid have enough to get the 40 Niners through it and to win a championship? You know, does he have does he have four games in the ticket to get them through this? Is that good enough? And I’m waiting to see a pan out. I want to see that one pan out because this is along the lines of Kurt Warner coming out of Iowa cornfields right yeah, yeah, it’s some combination of Field of Dreams meets football right? That’s that’s the kind of thing that Brock Purdy is today.

Nestor Aparicio  24:03

We’ve been around the game so long. They didn’t never made deals in season, the McCaffrey deal as well as row Quan Smith here. Difference making kinds of things. We always talked about baseball at the trading deadline into your baseball guy too. Rarely, it makes a difference. Certainly for the 40. Niners they were brought 40 wouldn’t be brought birdie had they not me acquired McAfee

Jason Cole  24:24

for Jimmy Garoppolo would have been Jimmy Garoppolo. Without Christian without Christian McCaffrey. The McCaffrey deal is is a huge one along along the way too. No question about it. But I’ll just say this, they went from starting trade lands in the first game, to then go into Jimmy Garoppolo to then go into Mr. Literally, Mr. Irrelevant the last pick in the draft, a rookie starting quarterback, and they’re better now with him starting at quarterback than they were in the first 11 games. They’re averaging 33 points a game with Brock birdie, they averaged 22 points. game in the first 11 With the combination of Jimmy Garoppolo and Trey Lance that tells you everything you need to know about what’s going on here. Party is pretty he’s having a special run. Is it long term? I have no idea. But for right now, this story fascinates me.


Nestor Aparicio  25:17

It helps to have a beautiful mind, doesn’t it? Right. That’s why you went to college or you went not the other place, right?

Jason Cole  25:22

I love it. But it’s beyond that. It’s a beautiful mind is a wonderful thing. You know? Does it operate faster? Like I did a story about this kid. This this company out of Nashville, they tested his his cognitive ability and they said his cognitive ability. I’m not talking about his physical building. His cognitive Bill cognitive ability is on a level with guys like Joe burrow, Justin Herbert, and Josh Allen. He’s not a thrower of the football like this guy. It’s don’t get me wrong. Like he’s not gonna sit back and throw one off of his back foot 50 yards downfield. It doesn’t happen that way. He can’t. But in terms of processing things, his ability to focus is online with Drew Brees. Okay. When we’re talking about guys who were top level all pros, guys, we’re changing the game right now. If not Hall of Famers. He has that kind of cognitive ability. physical ability. Men. Okay, cognitive ability. Hey, look when you can make decisions like that. It’s like I sat with belcheck One night you’re doing an hour long discussion with him was like 11 o’clock at night in his office. And one thing he said he does the big arms great you know from her heart is great just but if you can’t make decisions and you’re not accurate with the football, nothing else matters. Make decisions be accurate. Brock Purdy makes incredible decisions he’s incredibly accurate for right now that may be enough to get the 40 Niners through this and maybe just maybe win the championship. Jason Cole

Nestor Aparicio  27:03

is here he will be there for you throughout the playoffs should follow along on on the Twitter thing as well as that out kick. It’s always good to see you always good to get your insights which are always a little different than some other folks in the way they see the game because of all the stuff you’ve seen all these years. Wish us luck with this Lamar thing you’re Jay you know this

Jason Cole  27:23


it’s enjoy the ride. It’ll

Nestor Aparicio  27:26

be fun. Are they dancing on the edge of chaos officially or no?

Jason Cole  27:30

Oh, yeah, they’re Dance. Dance.

Nestor Aparicio  27:35

JC Cole joining us here I owe him a crab cake. We’re gonna be able to crab cake with my friend Andy over chi and a Coney Island hot dog in Whitemarsh. On Thursday, I had some lottery scratch offs to give away as well as a big thanks to our friends at window nation for making it happen. 866 90 nation sponsoring the Maryland crabcake tour Luke is in Owings Mills. The ravens are headed to Cincinnati. Let you know if that’s victory chili or not right around the midnight on Sunday night. I am Nestor. We are W en sta and 1570, Towson Baltimore. We never stopped talking ravens playoffs and Baltimore

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