Over his collegiate career, Louisville quarterback Lamar Jackson was the most feared player in each game he played. As a starter from day one during his freshman year, Jackson never looked back and worked tirelessly to become the player he is today. On the way he picked up a Heisman trophy, as well. Jackson’s video game-like numbers are what make him stand out.
In his first season as a true freshman, Jackson had a bit of a slow start compared to the rest of his career. Over the course of 12 games, Jackson threw for just 1,840 yards with a 7.4 yards per attempt average while completing 54.7 percent of his passes. He threw for 12 touchdowns and eight interceptions. On the ground, Jackson added another 960 yards with a 5.9 yard per carry average and 11 touchdowns. Louisville played Texas A&M in their bowl game and Jackson had a bit of a rough go through the air but was sensational on the ground. He went 12-for-26 for 227 yards and two touchdowns. His legs won the game for the Cardinals as he had 22 rushing attempts for 226 yards and two touchdowns.
Jackson made an enormous leap from year one to year two as a sophomore. Through the air, Jackson managed to throw for 3,543 yards with an 8.7 yards per attempt average, completing 56.2 percent of his passes, and throwing 30 touchdowns and just nine interceptions. He also became more involved in the rushing game than he already was. Tallying up 1,571 rushing yards with a six-yard-per-carry average and 21 rushing touchdowns, Jackson solidified himself as the clear cut Heisman trophy winner. Unfortunately in Louisville’s bowl game loss against LSU, Jackson went just 10 for 27 with 153 yards, no touchdowns or interceptions, and rushed 25 times for only 33 yards.
Going into his third and final season as a junior at Louisville, expectations were sky-high for the reigning Heisman trophy winner and he delivered in the regular season. Jackson threw for 3,660 yards with an 8.5 yards per attempt average and completing 59.1 percent of his passes. He had 27 touchdowns and 10 interceptions through the air. Another great year on the ground for Jackson as he rushed for 1,601 yards, averaging 6.9 yards per carry and 18 touchdowns. For the third straight year, Louisville faced an SEC defense in their bowl game and they fell short for the second straight year. Jackson went 13 for 31 passing for 171 yards, two touchdowns and four interceptions while adding 158 yards on the ground with 24 attempts and a touchdown.
Jackson is by far the most athletic quarterback out of the group and has one of the stronger arms. He is seen by many as the fifth-best quarterback in this front-loaded class. If the Buffalo Bills happen to stay put at picks 12 and 22, Jackson would be there for them to take with possibly either of the picks. Jackson is going to be a project for a team that is okay with making him sit and learn for a year and the Bills might not be that patient depending on AJ McCarron’s play.