Ravens quarterback Lamar Jackson ran the ball 19 times in Sunday’s win over the Bengals, which led to a pair of of divergent outcomes for the team.
On the positive side, Jackson gained a career-high 152 yards on the ground. On the negative side, Jackson was fair game for hits from the Bengals defense throughout the 23-17 victory.
Ravens head coach John Harbaugh said that those hits are “part of the game right now with the way we play” while adding that there were still a couple of shots that he’d prefer to see Jackson avoid in the future.
“I’m impressed with his toughness, there’s no question about that. The goal is not probably to take certain hits,” Harbaugh said, via the Baltimore Sun. “There were probably two in them there that I probably would’ve rather seen him not get hit on, you know? But I think we also have to acknowledge that those are going to happen throughout the course of the year — hopefully less rather than more. You don’t want a quarterback — I wouldn’t expect him to be running that many times very many times this year; that’s just the way it went.”
The 19 carries are a season-high for Jackson, but it’s the third time he’s run at least 14 times in a game this season. While he’s matched that production on the ground with more success through the air than he experienced last season, there’s little reason to think that taking big hits while running the ball will ever be a thing of the past for Jackson.