He suited up for the game at Soldier Field but did not leave the visiting team’s locker room due to an illness.
No one knows the actual sickness that the former league MVP endured, but it was grave enough to start Tyler Huntley.
Luckily, the Ravens won a tight match, 16-13, giving head coach John Harbaugh only his fourth victory with a quarterback not named Lamar Jackson or Joe Flacco.
It’s stories like these that make the NFL so special!
Undrafted 2nd-Yr QB Tyler Huntley led the #Ravens to two scores in under 4 minutes to beat the Bears on the road in his first ever start replacing Lamar Jackson…
— StaceyDales (@StaceyDales) November 22, 2021
But while Baltimore clinched their seventh win in ten games, it’s quite a concern that their starting play-caller already got sick three times this season.
That count does not include his second battle with COVID-19 before their 2021 campaign.
They cannot afford to miss his services for a long time, especially with the tight race for the AFC North title.
Yet while their division rivals are not far behind, it would be better to let Jackson miss their Week 12 contest against the Cleveland Browns because of these reasons.
2. See What They Have With Huntley
It’s not that the Ravens are looking for Jackson’s replacement.
However, Huntley did have a decent game against the Bears.
The undrafted second-year quarterback from the University of Utah finished with 26 completions for 219 yards.
He also added 40 rushing yards and threw an interception.
Bears take the lead late on, upset win against the Ravens.
Tyler Huntley: pic.twitter.com/ASimZNhFbL
— Sam Monson (@PFF_Sam) November 21, 2021
The 23-year-old quarterback is under a one-year, $780,000 contract, and giving him more playing time will help the team assess if he’s worthy of an extension.
A win over the Browns will strengthen Huntley’s case to remain Jackson’s able backup while maintaining their run-first philosophy.
The Ravens could settle their quarterback rotation for the foreseeable future if Huntley turned around and had another decent performance.
That cushion helps them remain competitive even if Jackson misses games in the succeeding seasons.
Likewise, playing Huntley for another week gives him the confidence to perform better against the Browns.
After all, he won’t get much playing time once Jackson returns to action.
1. Give Lamar Jackson More Rest
Jackson has been a workhorse all season, especially when Gus Edwards and J.K. Dobbins succumbed to season-ending injuries.
Aside from establishing their passing game, he also leads the team in rushing yards, and it’s not even close.
Rushing his return might not be a good idea because they will need him more during the games that highly matter.
Yes, winning against the Browns will solidify their place on top of the AFC North.
Lamar Jackson arrives at Soldier Field, where he is questionable with an illness.
Jackson is currently a game-time decision. Even if he plays, there’s a concern of whether he can play the entire game.
Tyler Huntley is the backup.
— Jamison Hensley (@jamisonhensley) November 21, 2021
But that won’t matter if they will have a tired quarterback come playoff time.
Therefore, it’s wise to let him stay on the sidelines for one more week and give him more time to recuperate from his injuries.
If they lose, they are still able to reclaim the division, and it will give Jackson additional motivation to beat them in Week 14.
Meanwhile, having a fresher starting quarterback helps them close the regular season on a strong note.
— Baltimore Ravens (@Ravens) November 24, 2021
Their remaining games are no pushovers because they are in line to face the Green Bay Packers, Los Angeles Rams, Cincinnati Bengals, and the Pittsburgh Steelers twice.
If they lose Jackson again, the Ravens might have a hard time winning most of their remaining schedule.