Lamar Jackson lost two fumbles Monday night, and his last turnover was the most costly.
With the game tied in overtime, Jackson lost the football while being sacked by Carl Nassib, setting up the winning drive for the Las Vegas Raiders in their 33-27 victory. It was fitting that a hit on Jackson led to the Ravens' demise. He was hit all night.
The Raiders had three sacks and seven quarterback hits on Jackson, and only his elusiveness kept him from being hit more often.
Jackson was still angry about his two turnovers during his postgame press conference, blaming himself. He took to social media afterwards to express more frustration.
"That ticked me off. I hate any type of turnover," Jackson said. "Two hands on the football."
But while Jackson needs to take better care of the football, the Ravens need to take better care of him. This was the debut of Baltimore's new-look offensive line – a starting front five of All-Pro left tackle Ronnie Stanley, left guard Tyre Phillips, center Bradley Bozeman, right guard Kevin Zeitler and right tackle Alejandro Villanueva.
The offensive line did not fare as well as Baltimore hoped. Phillips was carted off with a knee injury in the first half and did not return, replaced by Ben Powers. There was no immediate update after the game from Head Coach John Harbaugh on Phillips' injury.
Meanwhile, the Raiders generated consistent pressure on Jackson throughout the game, led by Maxx Crosby who had two sacks and four quarterback hits. Much of the offseason talk surrounding the Ravens centered on their offensive line, and how well it would play. That talk will continue after this game.
Jackson used his mobility to create some magic, most notably on his 10-yard touchdown pass to Marquise "Hollywood" Brown when he eluded at least three tackles to buy time until Brown broke free.
However, the magic ran out for the Ravens' offense in overtime, largely because they didn't have enough answers for the Raiders pass rush. Jackson's numbers weren't bad at all (19 for 30, 235 yards, one touchdown, no interceptions, 86 yards rushing). But winning is what he cares about most, and the Ravens are 0-1.
Baltimore led 14-0 in the second quarter and had a chance to take control of the game. But instead of keeping the momentum, the Ravens lost it, and their next game is the home opener against the defending AFC champion Kansas City Chiefs, who hold a 3-0 record over Jackson as a starter quarterback.
The Ravens entered the game having won five straight season openers, usually in dominant fashion. But this Week 1 game had a different feel. By halftime, the Raiders had closed to within 14-10, setting up an exciting second half where both teams made big plays and big mistakes.
Jackson's first fumble came in the fourth quarter when he coughed up the football after taking a hard hit from Quinton Jefferson. The Ravens were still leading, 17-10, but Jackson's turnover set up a give-play 41-yard touchdown drive by the Raiders, ending with Josh Jacobs' 15-yard touchdown run.
With 16 games left, the Ravens have time to figure things out. But for the first time in six years, they opened a season with a loss, and Jackson was already looking forward to facing the Chiefs.
"We have to prepare for a great team, Sunday night in the bank," Jackson said. "We've got to make something happen."