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Lamar Jackson Downplays Ravens Opening NFL Schedule with Chiefs: 'Didn't Really Care'

Scott Polacek

The Baltimore Ravens will get the chance at a little revenge when they open the 2024 campaign against the same Kansas City Chiefs team that beat them in the AFC Championship Game last season, but Lamar Jackson has bigger goals in mind.

"I really don't care who we play; it really didn't matter," the quarterback told reporters. "At the end of the day, our goal is to make it to the Super Bowl.

"We lost to them in the playoffs. Just us beating them in the regular season doesn't really do anything; it just helps us keep stacking up wins to hopefully make it to the playoffs if anything to try to get in that same position again and hopefully be successful. It really doesn't matter who we play [in the] first game; obviously it's the Chiefs, but I really didn't care."

Jackson would surely like to forget that AFC Championship Game, as the Ravens were at home and held Patrick Mahomes and Co. to just 17 points. It's difficult to script a better opportunity to defeat Kansas City in the postseason, but Baltimore's offense managed just 10 points.

The three-time Pro Bowler was an unspectacular 20-of-37 for 272 yards, one touchdown and one interception while adding 54 yards on the ground as a runner.

Baltimore needed far more individual production from the 2023 MVP to defeat the Chiefs and fell just short of its ultimate goal.

It responded by adding star running back Derrick Henry this offseason, which will create nightmare scenarios for opposing defenses. If they stack the box to stop the physical Henry, Jackson can either turn the corner and get out in space as a runner or find receivers down field. And if they focus on slowing down Jackson, Henry will run right through holes along the front.

Facing the Chiefs defense that held them to just 10 points the last time out is quite the first-game test for the new-look Ravens offense, and a victory could help set the tone for a special season.

Even if Jackson didn't seem to put any more stock in the matchup than he would have for any opponent.

   

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