Racist remarks on Lamar Jackson prompted 49ers to once suspend a renowned radio analyst
Lamar Jackson, like many black quarterbacks, has had to face racist comments.
In December 2019, Jackson was the focal point of a racist comment made when the Baltimore Ravens faced the San Francisco 49ers in Week 13.
49ers radio anaylst Tim Ryan commented on-air about the Ravens quarterback and how he was executing the team’s offense, but he used racial overtones.
“He’s really good at that fake, Lamar Jackson, but when you consider his dark skin color with a dark football with a dark uniform, you could not see that thing. I mean you literally could not see when he was in and out of the mesh point.”
In response to his comments, the 49ers suspended Ryan, issuing a statement noting his suspension:
“We are disappointed in Tim Ryan’s comments earlier this week, and have suspended him for the upcoming game. We hold Tim to a high standard as a representative of our organization and he must be more thoughtful with his words.”
Lamar Jackson went on to throw for 105 yards and rush for 101 yards against the San Francisco 49ers that week. He also had two total touchdowns, one passing and one on the ground. The Baltimore Ravens defeated the 49ers by a score of 20 – 17.
Tim Ryan apologized for his comments about Lamar Jackson
Tim Ryan also issued a statement, apologizing for his comments and praising Jackson for his play on the field:
“I regret my choice of words in trying to describe the conditions of the game. Lamar Jackson is an MVP-caliber player and I respect him greatly. I want to sincerely apologize to him and anyone else I offended.”
Jackson won the NFL MVP award that season. The former Louisville Cardinals star broke Michael Vick‘s all-time rushing yards record in a season for quarterbacks (1,206 yards). Jackson also threw for 3,127 yards, 36 touchdowns, and just six interceptions.
It was a tremendous campaign for him and Jackson will be hoping for a repeat. However, with his future very much in question, it will be interesting to see where that will be.