Tyler Huntley got word he was starting directly from Lamar Jackson

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Ravens quarterback Tyler Huntley didn’t know he’d be playing in place of Lamar Jackson until this morning. Huntley found out about it directly from Lamar.

“When I was walking toward the bus, Lamar sent me a text,” Huntley told PFT by phone after the 16-13 win. “He was like, ‘Go do your thing.’ That’s how I found out I was playing today.”

Jackson couldn’t play due to an illness, even though he practiced on Friday. Huntley said he spent Saturday thinking he’d play.

“I just was preparing like I was going to play,” Huntley said. “That’s all I can do. I can prepare and be ready. If I wasn’t going to be prepared it would’ve been a different turnout in that game probably.”

Assisting the preparation was the fact that Huntley has gotten plenty of extra practice time this year, both during the season when Lamar was ill and had a back injury, and in the preseason when Lamar was on the COVID reserve list.

“That’s definitely a help,” Huntley said. “Just feeling the receivers, just feeling the line. It’s great that I had the opportunity to get those reps that I got.”

He got the opportunity despite not being drafted. How much does that drive him?

“It plays a great part of my motivation,” Huntley said. “I just feel like I owe it all to the Ravens because they gave me a chance and now I’m here.”

After the game, capped by a touchdown drive fueled by a 29-yard pass to Sammy Watkins — the third read on the play — that put the ball inside the five, Huntley heard directly from the man whose place he took.

“[Lamar] was the first one to congratulate me in the locker room,” Huntley said. “I’m walking through, he just said he loves me. That means everything that he can trust me to go out there and get a win while he’s sitting down.”

It’s smart for every team to have a backup who can be trusted to win a game or two. The Ravens have that with Huntley, and they’d better enjoy it while they can. If he plays like he did today when he gets chances to show what he can do, it’s just a matter of time before someone offers him a starting job elsewhere.

3 responses to “Tyler Huntley got word he was starting directly from Lamar Jackson

  1. I like how you have to point out that it was his third read to Sammy Watkins on that throw. Lamar never gets past his first read, which creates his challenges when he’s under pressure. I actually don’t think the Ravens suffered much in terms of QB play today. Huntley basically put up the same stats as Lamar in his past 4 games. And Huntley looked poised in that last drive. He didn’t panic and just tuck and run.

  2. LJ is reckless (on many fronts) and gets sick too often to be worth 30mil/year more than TH. I’m not saying TH is better or even as good — just no where near the cap space difference. Ravens need to play the hand they are dealt.

  3. I’ve said it before and will say it again: paying Lamar anything more than 20mm a year is going to cripple this team. You can’t commit 40mm to a guy who has proven he can’t win in the playoffs and still can’t read defenses or throw to a hot route on a blitz. I know he’s won a lot of regular season games but his significant deficiencies as a QB mean the Ravens have to invest in O line, TEs, and WRs and if you pay Lamar the rumored 40mm+, you won’t be able to do it. You’ll be on the fast path to mediocrity and when Lamar gets dinged up and loses a step, which eventually will happen, you’ll end up being bad with no way to fix things because he simply can’t throw reliably.

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