Amidst whispers during the pre-draft process that Lamar Jackson should change positions, his mom Felicia Jones maintained her belief that her son was an NFL quarterback. It was nothing new for Jones who has been telling people Jackson was a quarterback since his high school days.
Jones played a major role in Jackson’s predraft process in 2018, but there was some confusion over her title. Jones was initially referred to as Jackson’s agent, something the quarterback later disputed. Jackson opted not to sign with an agent, and Jones served as his manager rather than an agent.
“Lamar Jackson told me that his mom is not his agent, ‘she is my manager’ and he added ‘I represent myself.’ Jackson told me he does not think an agent is necessary with the current rookie scale for initial #NFL contracts,” ESPN’s Josina Anderson tweeted.
Jackson opted not to sign with an agent mostly for financial purposes and wanted his mother to be involved in the process. Jackson explained to Denver 9News’ Mike Klis that he did not hire an agent, because he did not want them to “take a cut of my paycheck and I feel I deserve it.”
Jackson Committed to Louisville After They Assured Him He Would Have an Opportunity to Play Quarterback
Jones was also heavily involved in her son’s college recruitment, and one of the key factors was finding a school committed to playing Jackson at quarterback. Lamar Thomas was a Louisville assistant who helped recruit Jackson and discussed Jones’ request prior to her son committing to Louisville.
“When we sat down, she said, ‘I just want to know one thing, Coach. Is my son going to have an opportunity to play quarterback and compete for the starting job?’ Thomas noted to Courier-Journal. “And Coach Petrino said yes. Coach Petrino didn’t flinch.”
Jackson Declined to Work Out at Other Positions During the Pre-draft Process
Talks of Jackson potentially playing wide receiver or another position did not end in high school. There was rumblings even among NFL teams that Jackson should consider working out at other positions before the 2018 draft. Jackson opted not to run the 40-yard dash instead choosing to focus on the NFL Combine’s passing drills.
All Jackson needed was one team to believe in his potential as a quarterback, and he found that with the Ravens. John Harbaugh’s wife Ingrid Harbaugh discussed her husband’s connection with Jackson.
“John was close to Joe [Flacco] too,” Harbaugh explained to ESPN. “But it’s just a different level with Lamar…They just hit it off right away. John’s such a positive, open-minded person, and he sees the good in everybody. … We got a steal because everyone passed Lamar up because they didn’t want to go with a running quarterback. But John goes, ‘We can do this. We can mold our offense to him.'”