Corleone

Lamar Jackson 2020 Outlook

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What does 2020 have in store for Lamar Jackson? In 2019, he put together one amazing fantasy season. On a PPG basis, it was the top season of all-time. And overall,  it probably ranks as the second-best fantasy season for a QB ever (ahead of 2018 Patrick Mahomes and behind only 2007 Tom Brady, who beat the #2 QB by 99 points that season). 

Some people think that the league will figure out Jackson, with Baltimore's loss in their first playoff game a sign that he can be figured out. I decided to take a look at how the #1 fantasy QB for every season this century did, to see how often the league "figures out" the top fantasy QB. I looked at how many times the #1 QB had a #1 fantasy QB finish, #2 and #3, and then a finish between #4--#8 (why end at 8...because that meant the QB was a QB1 in even the smallest of leagues, and part of the top 25% of QB's in the NFL itself).

image.png.ef8f32de81fbee0dd6459da1eb4f0586.png

Looking at fantasy history, you can see that no #1 QB has ever been figured out to the point where the #1 season was their only big fantasy season.

100% of the QB's who had a season as #1, had multiple successful seasons beyond that. Even Vick, who is the closest comparison to Jackson because of his rushing ability, had 4 seasons as a strong fantasy option (and his #1 finish came after a major injury and his jail time). 

Does this list mean Jackson has zero chance to bust as an elite fantasy option? Or does it mean he is guaranteed success beyond 2019? In both cases, of course not. Every player is different, so we can't say for sure what will happen with Jackson. Perhaps he gets injured while rushing and his career arc changes, amongst other possibilities. We don't know. But what we do know, is that literally every #1 fantasy QB from 2000--2018 (12 different guys), has been able to put up multiple big fantasy seasons during their careers. 

Edited by Corleone
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I don't think there should be much of a concern with his production dropping off. The concern is if the cost is worth it this season. I've had the luck of drafting both Mahomes and Lamar fairly late during their blowup seasons. Finding the next QB to have a top-5 season with a cheap draft cost is ideal next season.

Are there numbers out there to support drafting the previous fantasy #1 QB the next season and having success winning fantasy championships?

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Lamar is going to go in the 2nd or 3rd round most likely in most leagues, which isn't worth spending that kind of pick on a QB. If it is 5 keepers or more then Lamar would be a solid option. Another sexy appeal for the Ravens is their schedule next year, so Lamar has a high chance to duplicate the 2019 season. It all comes down to how bad to do you want him.

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16 hours ago, Corleone said:

What does 2020 have in store for Lamar Jackson? In 2019, he put together one amazing fantasy season. On a PPG basis, it was the top season of all-time. And overall,  it probably ranks as the second-best fantasy season for a QB ever (ahead of 2018 Patrick Mahomes and behind only 2007 Tom Brady, who beat the #2 QB by 99 points that season). 

Some people think that the league will figure out Jackson, with Baltimore's loss in their first playoff game a sign that he can be figured out. I decided to take a look at how the #1 fantasy QB for every season this century did, to see how often the league "figures out" the top fantasy QB. I looked at how many times the #1 QB had a #1 fantasy QB finish, #2 and #3, and then a finish between #4--#8 (why end at 8...because that meant the QB was a QB1 in even the smallest of leagues, and part of the top 25% of QB's in the NFL itself).

image.png.ef8f32de81fbee0dd6459da1eb4f0586.png

Looking at fantasy history, you can see that no #1 QB has ever been figured out to the point where the #1 season was their only big fantasy season.

100% of the QB's who had a season as #1, had multiple successful seasons beyond that. Even Vick, who is the closest comparison to Jackson because of his rushing ability, had 4 seasons as a strong fantasy option (and his #1 finish came after a major injury and his jail time). 

Does this list mean Jackson has zero chance to bust as an elite fantasy option? Or does it mean he is guaranteed success beyond 2019? In both cases, of course not. Every player is different, so we can't say for sure what will happen with Jackson. Perhaps he gets injured while rushing and his career arc changes, amongst other possibilities. We don't know. But what we do know, is that literally every #1 fantasy QB from 2000--2018 (12 different guys), has been able to put up multiple big fantasy seasons during their careers. 


Great work and perspective here.   Thanks 

 

It’s a tough call on Lamar in the second-  which is where I expect he goes by August in redraft.   One on hand-  he’s in his prime and his rushing ability sets a high floor.   On the other hand...qb is a carousel yearly between the top 8-12 guys.    Using a second on qb5 would be a poor investment.    So he’ll have to perform at his ceiling once again.  

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9 hours ago, Impreza178 said:


Great work and perspective here.   Thanks 

 

It’s a tough call on Lamar in the second-  which is where I expect he goes by August in redraft.   One on hand-  he’s in his prime and his rushing ability sets a high floor.   On the other hand...qb is a carousel yearly between the top 8-12 guys.    Using a second on qb5 would be a poor investment.    So he’ll have to perform at his ceiling once again.  

Thanks as well, I appreciate that.

In terms of Lamar in Round 2, I'd pull the trigger myself. His upside is worth it IMO. Even if he finishes as QB 5, he'll still be an asset to your fantasy team...but if he finishes as QB 1, you may well have a massive advantage over everyone.

Beyond that, Round 2 can be full of busts as is. I just took a look at my one redraft league's results, to see how guys drafted in Round 2 guys fared. This was in 10 team PPR...
image.png.b077fa0eb766f2be48dd4cf1602d0936.png

The guys in green were successful draft picks. The guys in red were all busts IMO, even Mixon, who needed a huge surge at the end of the season (including Week 17) to climb to 13...though that wouldn't have helped the high majority of his fantasy owners, who were already eliminated. 

Edited by Corleone
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10 hours ago, devaster said:

I don't think there should be much of a concern with his production dropping off. The concern is if the cost is worth it this season. I've had the luck of drafting both Mahomes and Lamar fairly late during their blowup seasons. Finding the next QB to have a top-5 season with a cheap draft cost is ideal next season.

Are there numbers out there to support drafting the previous fantasy #1 QB the next season and having success winning fantasy championships?

There's no info I'm aware of for that, but I looked at the #1 QB by ADP since 2007 (that was as far back as I could quickly find) to see what their QB finish was that season. Here are the results:

image.png.b970b6a8d97e41aa513fa5db4df2e5d9.png

--6 cases ending up between #2 through #4. Success.
--2 cases ending up #6 or #7. Good, but still disappointing. For Mahomes, injury certainly played into that of course.
--3 cases where an injury cost over half the season or more. Bad luck.
--1 case (Vick) where the QB was outside of Top 10 in total points. But on PPG basis, he was #6 that year.
--1 case (Cam) where the QB was a total bust. 

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Jackson's rushing is his obvious strength and also his fantasy floor; his ceiling however is his passing ability. Jackson threw a TD on 9.0% of his throws last year; 15th best of all time, and his only contemporaries are P Manning (9.9% 2004) and Rodgers (9.0% 2011) per Pro Football Reference.

 

So to me the question about Jackson isn't his floor, but can he sustain this outlier of a statistic with passing TDs. I think in the 2nd round you are certainly drafting him at ceiling and I don't think he will bust the same way DWill and Juju did, but I am skeptical that he will return on investment at that price point.

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16 hours ago, Corleone said:

Thanks as well, I appreciate that.

In terms of Lamar in Round 2, I'd pull the trigger myself. His upside is worth it IMO. Even if he finishes as QB 5, he'll still be an asset to your fantasy team...but if he finishes as QB 1, you may well have a massive advantage over everyone.

Beyond that, Round 2 can be full of busts as is. I just took a look at my one redraft league's results, to see how guys drafted in Round 2 guys fared. This was in 10 team PPR...
image.png.b077fa0eb766f2be48dd4cf1602d0936.png

The guys in green were successful draft picks. The guys in red were all busts IMO, even Mixon, who needed a huge surge at the end of the season (including Week 17) to climb to 13...though that wouldn't have helped the high majority of his fantasy owners, who were already eliminated. 


A couple issues with that approach 

 

1- sample size 

2- you would have missed out on TE1, wr1,3, rb6.   Most years there’s a top 5 rb or 2 in the second round as well. 

3- only the top qb or two outscores the rest of the top 10 by enough to make it worth hurting the most important positions on your fantasy team.    
 

so yeah— you’re paying ceiling prices and need matching results to justify a qb that early when there’s so many other great options much MUCH later.

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1 hour ago, Impreza178 said:


A couple issues with that approach 

 

1- sample size 

2- you would have missed out on TE1, wr1,3, rb6.   Most years there’s a top 5 rb or 2 in the second round as well. 

3- only the top qb or two outscores the rest of the top 10 by enough to make it worth hurting the most important positions on your fantasy team.    
 

so yeah— you’re paying ceiling prices and need matching results to justify a qb that early when there’s so many other great options much MUCH later.

But you’re talking about a guy who had eleven top-5 performances - meaning, if you started him all season, he basically single-handedly won you your week about 3/4 of the time.

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3 hours ago, BMcP said:

But you’re talking about a guy who had eleven top-5 performances - meaning, if you started him all season, he basically single-handedly won you your week about 3/4 of the time.


A repeat of 2019 would obviously be a huge win.  

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On 2/18/2020 at 12:23 PM, Impreza178 said:


A couple issues with that approach 

 

1- sample size 

2- you would have missed out on TE1, wr1,3, rb6.   Most years there’s a top 5 rb or 2 in the second round as well. 

3- only the top qb or two outscores the rest of the top 10 by enough to make it worth hurting the most important positions on your fantasy team.    
 

so yeah— you’re paying ceiling prices and need matching results to justify a qb that early when there’s so many other great options much MUCH later.

Towards sample size, do you mean results of just that one draft? Or in terms of only mentioning a 2019 draft and not other years? 
For the one 2019 draft mentioned, that's true it is only one draft. But those are players who would commonly have been picked around those spots in all leagues. Looking at 2019 ADP from https://fantasyfootballcalculator.com/adp/ppr/12-team/all/2019, here were picks 11 through 20:

image.png.ce4f01da55396534ee539191e2bcd283.png

Across my one draft and ADP across a high number of leagues, 8 of the 10 guys are the same. 

If meaning more seasons beyond 2019, there definitely are multiple busts in Round 2 every year, so my take is that you can end up with a bust no matter what position you pick. 

It's true that QB is devalued in 1 QB leagues (which I prefer 2 QB leagues by far, but I digress). But just because there are later-round QB's that do vault up into the top 5 or top 10, that doesn't mean you'll end up with that guy. Some people love to wait on QB and think they'll get the 2019 version of Dak or Winston. But you can just as easily end up with the 2019 version of Jimmy G or Rivers, who were far from assets across most of this past fantasy season.

Bringing it back specifically to Jackson, let's say you dropped 100 points from his total this season. He'd have been the #5 QB or thereabouts. I just checked the math and if you paired that version of Lamar with 2019 Devonta Freeman (nobody's idea of a solid fantasy RB), that still would have outscored 2019 Cousins (the #13 QB through Week 16) + 2019 Ingram (a guy who finished as one of the RB1's).

I agree that it's ideal to get another huge year of Jackson if you draft him in Round 2. But it's not crippling to your team if he only finishes as a top 5 guy, especially if you wait on QB and only end up with a fringe QB1.

Edited by Corleone
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I don't see his production falling much, but if the tender is a 2nd rounder I'll pass. I'm more interested to see where Mahomes goes, and if he's too expensive as well, this isn't a bad year to wait on QB.

Edited by Nickmo

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On 2/19/2020 at 2:53 PM, Corleone said:

Towards sample size, do you mean results of just that one draft? Or in terms of only mentioning a 2019 draft and not other years? 
For the one 2019 draft mentioned, that's true it is only one draft. But those are players who would commonly have been picked around those spots in all leagues. Looking at 2019 ADP from https://fantasyfootballcalculator.com/adp/ppr/12-team/all/2019, here were picks 11 through 20:

image.png.ce4f01da55396534ee539191e2bcd283.png

Across my one draft and ADP across a high number of leagues, 8 of the 10 guys are the same. 

If meaning more seasons beyond 2019, there definitely are multiple busts in Round 2 every year, so my take is that you can end up with a bust no matter what position you pick. 

It's true that QB is devalued in 1 QB leagues (which I prefer 2 QB leagues by far, but I digress). But just because there are later-round QB's that do vault up into the top 5 or top 10, that doesn't mean you'll end up with that guy. Some people love to wait on QB and think they'll get the 2019 version of Dak or Winston. But you can just as easily end up with the 2019 version of Jimmy G or Rivers, who were far from assets across most of this past fantasy season.

Bringing it back specifically to Jackson, let's say you dropped 100 points from his total this season. He'd have been the #5 QB or thereabouts. I just checked the math and if you paired that version of Lamar with 2019 Devonta Freeman (nobody's idea of a solid fantasy RB), that still would have outscored 2019 Cousins (the #13 QB through Week 16) + 2019 Ingram (a guy who finished as one of the RB1's).

I agree that it's ideal to get another huge year of Jackson if you draft him in Round 2. But it's not crippling to your team if he only finishes as a top 5 guy, especially if you wait on QB and only end up with a fringe QB1.

 

I agree Lamar will not cripple your team because of one simple reason. The offense is built around his ability  to run with the football. there is no other team in the NFL that has an offense structured in the same way.  other NFL offenses are predicated on the QB passing the ball down the field to beat defenses not using their legs. No other starting NFL QB has this unique advantage. 

Fantasy points rewards the QB who can run and score more than the QB who can pass and score. This is the single biggest factor in fantasy and why Lamar is a legitimate  exception to the don't take a QB early round view. Sure he can regress or be a dud as can every other QB. 

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Posted (edited)

There is talk about the team\Lamar scaling back his rushes and focusing on passing more. This will be a downgrade in the fantasy world if it actually happens. His money is rushing and gaining all those rush yards. 

 

I see a huge regression this season either way.

Edited by SyNdicateZ

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2 minutes ago, SyNdicateZ said:

There is talk about the team\Lamar scaling back his rushes and focusing on passing more. This will be a downgrade in the fantasy world if it actually happens. His money is rushing and gaining all those rush yards. 

 

I see a huge regression this season either way.

Pre-draft, there are a couple of points to note here:

1) The retirement of Marshall Yanda cannot be understated. Guy was a breaching charge on that O-line. Follow 73.

2) Ravens have traded away Hayden Hurst; not as good a blocker as Nick Boyle, not as good a receiver as Mark Andrews, but their TE rotations was what made that offense hum. They'll need to find someone similar in the draft, otherwise an injury to either of the above will be pretty crippling to that offense.

3) Where they go in round 1 will probably influence my Lamar stock. If they trade up to take a rookie WR like Ruggs or stay at 28 and take say Ruiz at centre, I'd see that in a vote of confidence.

Regression... I dunno there's a way you game-plan for him if he keeps passing so well. He will continue to have games where he rips off chunk-plays on the ground, particularly against bad defences or those who try playing dime, get run-over, then have to go back to nickel or base to counteract that. He'll still single-handedly win you weeks if Baltimore keep on the march. I know he wants to throw more, but Jim Harbaugh said that last year as well. I'll believe it when I see it, and until I see it that rushing floor remains the biggest advantage in fantasy football.

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I've always lived by, "don't draft QB early".   And I believe in the premise. 

That being said, when I review my last few drafts, I find total busts that I've taken in early rounds.   I don't expect Jackson to repeat what he did but I can make a personal case that taking Jackson or Mahomes early is better than speculating on someone like OBJ.  

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13 minutes ago, K197040 said:

I've always lived by, "don't draft QB early".   And I believe in the premise. 

That being said, when I review my last few drafts, I find total busts that I've taken in early rounds.   I don't expect Jackson to repeat what he did but I can make a personal case that taking Jackson or Mahomes early is better than speculating on someone like OBJ.  

Agreed in full.  Good post.

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I heard today the Lamar Jackson and Hollywood Brown have talked to the Ravens about signing Antonio Brown if he is reinstated this year. It appears Hollywood talked to his cousin and asked Lamar to talk to AB about this year. Maybe Lamar can keep AB's behavior in check. This is huge news here in Baltimore. Unfortunately Baltimore has a reputation for staying away from characters like AB.

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8 hours ago, Zrattlesnake said:

I heard today the Lamar Jackson and Hollywood Brown have talked to the Ravens about signing Antonio Brown if he is reinstated this year. It appears Hollywood talked to his cousin and asked Lamar to talk to AB about this year. Maybe Lamar can keep AB's behavior in check. This is huge news here in Baltimore. Unfortunately Baltimore has a reputation for staying away from characters like AB.

Does that reputation encompass the murderer they made a statue of outside their stadium?

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Posted (edited)
10 hours ago, Zrattlesnake said:

I heard today the Lamar Jackson and Hollywood Brown have talked to the Ravens about signing Antonio Brown if he is reinstated this year. It appears Hollywood talked to his cousin and asked Lamar to talk to AB about this year. Maybe Lamar can keep AB's behavior in check. This is huge news here in Baltimore. Unfortunately Baltimore has a reputation for staying away from characters like AB.

Lamar is just being diplomatic. I don’t believe he truly wants AB. 
If AB is serious about returning to the NFL the first step will be to delete all social media.

Edited by goke

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Just now, goke said:

Lamar is just being diplomatic. I don’t believe he truly wants AB. 


I absolutely believe he does.  But doesn’t matter.  Balt is smarter than to allow a little cliche of premadonnas to form on their contender of a team.  

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1 minute ago, Impreza178 said:


I absolutely believe he does.  But doesn’t matter.  Balt is smarter than to allow a little cliche of premadonnas to form on their contender of a team.  

Its sad but AB did it to himself smh

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Will pass on him in August since he is now on the cover of this years Madden. 

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