It may not be Easter-day, but in this series, we are going on a football-themed easter egg hunt. Hunting for one veteran player at each position that should be on your Dynasty roster this season and beyond. We will also throw in a few “easter eggs” about each player to have fun and help you understand why I’m such a believer.
I’ve been invested in the players we will cover for multiple years in Dynasty. I’ve experienced the highs and lows. Still, I’m personally counting on these guys to lead my teams to fantasy glory in 2022. I believe each player can help you win as well.
Will Lamar Jackson rebound from a tough 2021 and have his best fantasy season yet? Let’s hop to it.
I’m Invested In This Ravens Offense
It pains me to say this as a Browns fan, but I’ve enjoyed watching the Ravens offense since Jackson came into the league. I love how the team has crafted their offensive schemes mostly around Jackson’s skill set and unique abilities. Many teams draft QBs to fit their system, but the Ravens made an effort to build more around their personnel. Doing it that way, they are better off for it.
I’ve rostered the likes of Jackson, Mark Andrews, Hollywood Brown, and even Miles Boykin in my home dynasty league over the years. I looked like a genius heading into the 2019 season (Lamar’s MVP year) for having so many Ravens players on my roster. Picking up Jackson and Andrews in Free Agency very early on accelerated a rebuild and put me right into contender mode the last few years.
That’s why the 2021 campaign for Jackson and the Ravens was so disappointing. Expectations were high, but injuries and more took their toll on the team, making 2021 a season to forget.
A Forgettable 2021 Season
The Ravens ending the season on a six-game losing streak, going 8-9, and missing the playoffs is “Not great, Bob.” When looking back on his individual performance in 2021, it’s important to note that Jackson played the fewest regular-season games of his career (he missed five and played twelve).
Even so, Jackson finished 16th among QBs in total PPR fantasy points. It was his worst finish since his rookie season in 2018 (29th overall). In fact, 2021 was Jackson’s worst total FFP (239.98), Passer Rating (86.97), and Passing TD total (16) since his rookie season. He rushed for the fewest TDs of his career (2) and threw the most interceptions (13)*. If you rostered him on your squad, you felt the weekly frustration.
There was so much out of Jackson’s control in 2021. It isn’t easy to make any real judgments on his performance from a fantasy perspective. I remember marveling at how much Jackson had improved in the passing game last season. It looked like he was rounding into form and becoming the total package on the field. The story could’ve been vastly different if he played an entire season and the Ravens didn’t deal with so many injuries. I expect Jackson to continue his upward trajectory and have an epic 2022.
2022 Fantasy Outlook
It’s a pretty small sample size (I need to work on my Twitter poll game), but I think this poll is a good representation of how people perceive Jackson’s ceiling heading into 2022. What’s clear is most people you talk to think he finishes in the top 10, probably. But it’s split in terms of whether they believe he finishes top-five or lower. Our Dynasty Nerds rankers have Jackson as the consensus QB7 as of this writing. I predict Jackson and the Ravens’ offense will bounce back in a big way and look more like their prolific 2019 selves. I don’t think a top-five or even top-three QB finish is out of the realm of possibility.
Our own Dan Toomey gave the Ravens an A+ grade for their 2022 Draft, and Dennis Bennett recently covered how the Ravens’ draft can potentially be a catalyst for a postseason return. The positive outlook for this season will depend significantly on how much Jackson and the offense get back to firing on all cylinders. With Hollywood Brown being traded to the Cardinals, Rashod Bateman steps into a WR1 role. Regardless of your perception of Hollywood, it creates a big change. Dynasty Nerds Mike Johrendt wrote about the Jackson to Bateman connection this season and Bateman’s potential to finish inside the top 20 WR.
JK Dobbins is returning from injury, and the Ravens drafted Tyler Badie out of Missouri to bolster the run game. So while the WR corps will be finding its rhythm this season, their famed running game should get back to full strength. A full-strength running game would be the biggest help to Lamar’s fantasy prospects. It opens up the full possibilities of the Ravens playbook – crafty RPOs, increased Play-Action, lethal designed QB runs – you name it. Combine all the play-calling flexibility from a strong run game with Jackson’s improvement as a passer, and we might finally have the season where he reaches his full, unstoppable potential.
Andrews might be the biggest reason for optimism as he looks to claim the TE1 spot in fantasy and on the field. He’s arguably their most important weapon on offense. You can expect to see the Jackson to Andrews connection on many fantasy teams this season (including mine). I’m so excited to see these two build on their combined success. I’ll be writing about Andrews later in this series.
Why You Should Invest In Lamar Jackson & The Ravens Offense
One of the reasons I love the NFL and fantasy football is because no matter how much we predict, study, and plan – it all comes down to what happens on the field. The unpredictability makes it so that anything can happen. Even with all the consensus optimism about the Ravens and Jackson heading into 2022. Certain investments and predictions in fantasy are riskier than others. I think the optimism for this Ravens squad is completely justified.
I expect Jackson, Andrews, Bateman, and Dobbins to all be fantasy stars and big-time contributors on winning rosters this season. Jackson is only 25 (his birthday is one day before mine!), and the main contributors on this offense are all early in their careers as well. The Ravens have shown time, and again they are a well-run organization capable of putting together A+ draft classes. I could easily see the Ravens’ offense and Jackson rounding into form. They can produce more exciting moments and many fantasy points over the next 3-5 years.
Jackson is a buy for me in Dynasty. If you’re a contending roster in need of QB help, I think he has the potential to be a catalyst for your 2022 title run. It’s been nine years since I first started playing Dynasty, and I’ve never won the title in the league that started it all for me. I’ll be heavily relying on Jackson, Andrews, and this Ravens offense to finally get me to the promised land. At the very least, as long as I have Jackson on my squad, I know my team won’t ever lay an egg.
*All stats from Fantasy Data unless otherwise noted
P.s. Lamar is unreal indeed:
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