Lamar Jackson on being youngest playoff starter: ‘I was 21 all year’
OWINGS MILLS, Md. When former Heisman Trophy winner Lamar Jackson was drafted by the Baltimore Ravens last April, he didn’t visualize a situation where he would start a playoff game in his rookie year.
“I didn’t think about it at all,” Jackson said Wednesday. “I told them when I came in, I came in to learn. Whether this year or next year, I just wanted to sit down and learn.”
This Sunday, Jackson will become the youngest quarterback to start a playoff game in NFL history when the Ravens host the Los Angeles Chargers this Sunday. He will be21 years, 364 days old; his birthday is Monday, Jan. 7.
But Jackson said he didn’t look at Sunday’s game through that lens.
“I’m here to play football,” he said. “I was 21 all year. Just another game for me.”
Jackson will take the mantle of youngest playoff starter from a quarterback he looked up to growing up: Michael Vick, who was 22 years, 192 days old when he started his first playoff game for the Falcons.
If Jackson needs any guidance, he’ll have the right players around him. The Ravens started a rookie quarterback named Joe Flacco in the playoffs following the 2008 season. As the No. 6 seed, Flacco and the Ravens won two straight to reach the AFC Championship Game.
Another quarterback who started a playoff game his rookie year some guy named Robert Griffin III is also in Baltimore’s locker room.