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Lamar Jackson (QB, BAL) - Week 1 Waiver Wire Pickups

BALLER MOVE: Add in 14+ Team Leagues

OWNED IN: 3% of Leagues

ANALYSIS: Baltimore Ravens quarterback Lamar Jackson is not to be used this week, as he is not even starting for the Ravens. He is someone that should be stashed in two-quarterback leagues or deeper leagues where most or all starting quarterbacks are rostered. Out of all the rookie quarterbacks, Jackson is the most interesting from an immediate fantasy perspective. The clock is ticking on Joe Flacco, and since the Ravens have eyes on a playoff spot they may be more aggressive in a change at quarterback if things go south quickly. Flacco has undergone a rapid decline over the past three years, and only has one good season out of his last five. In 2014, he posted a 27:12 TD:INT ratio and a 91.0 passer rating. Every other season his passer rating was below 84.0 and he had a miserable 71:62 TD:INT ratio. His weakening arm strength is apparent as well; Flacco had a meager 5.3 adjusted yards per attempt last season, only beating out the noodle-armed Brett Hundley and Deshone Kizer among qualified quarterbacks. Baltimore can $29 million in cap space if they cut Flacco next offseason, and replacing him with Jackson earlier may make the decision easier for the front office and soften the blow for the fan base.

What makes Jackson so interesting is his prolific rushing ability as a quarterback. Jackson is a little weak-armed himself, but his agility makes up for that deficiency. Paired with a dynamic running back like Alex Collins and a solid run-blocking line lead by Marshall Yanda Jackson will be in a position to succeed if and when he gets the opportunity to start. Compared to other rookies like Sam Darnold and Josh Allen, who would have to deal with the Jets and Bills offensive weapons, there is at least some exciting complimentary pieces on the Ravens. Jackson isn’t worth stashing in standard leagues, but he is the long-term stash to carry at the position in deeper leagues.

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