DO NOT DRAFT Lamar Jackson in 2020
Lamar Jackson just had the greatest fantasy football season by a quarterback of all time. When looking at it on a points per game basis he was 1.5pts per game better than the 2nd closest QB, Patrick Mahomes from last season. But, I’m telling you, DO NOT DRAFT Lamar Jackson in 2020. His ADP is going to land somewhere between the 1st and 2nd round. That’s TOO HIGH! History is not kind to the number 1 QBs year over year. Why should we think Lamar would be any different?
Since 2002, the number 1 QB on a points per game basis has repeated that feat only twice. Daunte Culpepper in 2004 and Donovan McNabb in 2006. Regression is going to hit. The average is about 4 points per game year over year. The regression for the most part comes in passing touchdowns. The average year over year for all of these QBs is 7.4 less touchdowns the next season.
For Lamar, there is some safety to drafting him based on just his rushing alone. 39.11% of Jackson’s points came from his rushing. That’s the 2nd highest mark during this time span behind Vick’s 2010 season of 39.19%. However, we still see a regression for rushing as well over this time period. The average is just over 1 point per game less for rushing points. When just looking at rushing QBs and removing the Peyton Manning and Drew Brees type QBs and just focusing on QBs who had at least 200 rushing yards, the points per game drops by just under 2 points per game (1.94). Basically, expect Lamar to negatively regress in both passing and rushing. Combing those two statistics, it’s possible Lamar could average about 6 points per game less in 2020 than he did in 2019, which would still be great, but it won’t be nearly the advantage of 2019. Annnnd, the biggest concern will be his durability. The more hits a QB takes, the more likely they will be injured. Just ask Andrew Luck. Lamar attempted 176 rushes in 2019. The average is 53 for all of the QBs in this sample size.
So, the combination of regression and injury concern will have me staying FAR AWAY from Lamar Jackson in any 1QB leagues in 2020. What say you?