Lamar Jackson is the MVP, but he still has work to do in the PR department when it comes to explaining losses.
It certainly seemed like the unstoppable Baltimore Ravens were headed towards an instant classix AFC Championship showdown with the Kansas City Chiefs.
Then they got stopped.
Baltimore’s playoff loss to the Tennessee Titans last season was a jarring shock to everyone who expected the Ravens to challenge the Chiefs for AFC supremacy, but no one was more stunned than those in Baltimore.
Lamar Jackson, who would go on to win the NFL’s MVP a few weeks later, has come out and said the Titans simply caught the Ravens by surprise. It’s a statement that, on the surface, seems very down-to-earth and relatable, but it’s one his teammates have been walking back ever since he said it.
Ravens receiver Miles Boykins is the latest teammate of Jackson’s to give him a lesson in PR and how to spin something as tremendously embarrassing as getting whooped at home in a playoff game you were supposed to win.
Lamar Jackson’s teammates want to set the record straight about the Titans loss
“I don’t think they caught us by surprise. It was about experience,” Boykin said on Good Morning Football. “We’re young and we made some mistakes. We now have that experience under our belts.”
Jackson saying the Ravens were caught by surprise can be interpreted as being endearing. After all, he’s just stating what seems to be obvious but there’s a lot of carnage in his words.
For starters, and perhaps most damning, to say the Ravens were caught by surprise is to openly imply that his teammates didn’t properly prepare for a playoff game. For the quarterback to off-handily imply this is exactly not what you’re looking for out of your leader of the locker room.
Jackson likely didn’t mean what the statement actually means, but choosing your words carefully in a public setting is the first rule of not putting your foot in your mouth. The fact that Jackson’s teammates are walking back his comments without totally calling him out says a lot about how much he’s respected, as those same teammates could be saying what they’re saying in a very different way.
In doing so, they’re showing Jackson that choosing your words carefully is of the utmost importance when talking about things that only teammates can understand.