Chris Simms and Tank Williams take a step outside the sports world to compare the Ravens quarterback to other figures who have changed their respective industries.
TANK WILLIAMS: All right, Chris, I feel like we need to dedicate an entire segment to Lamar Jackson because this dude has just been unbelievable this season. There was a whole lot of hate on Lamar coming into the NFL, coming into this season. But I think right now, even though the body of work is still small, he's proven that he's a game changer in this league and that he's here to stay.
And so I just want to say, game changers in any industry, who does Lamar remind you of? And so just to throw one out to get this conversation going, Will Smith. A lot of people said that he wasn't a hard enough rapper. But like still "Summertime in Miami" and some of my favorite songs.
CHRIS SIMMS: Come on.
TANK WILLIAMS: He goes to the "Fresh Prince of Bel Air" and people say he's not a good enough actor. He can't carry a lead. Then he goes and he does "Independence Day" and stuff like that. So it's one of those things where somebody continues to ball out on a consistent basis. And that's what I feel Lamar is doing right now and what he's going to continue to do.
CHRIS SIMMS: Yeah, I mean, I'm with you. I'm sold on this conversation in general. Yeah, I mean, he's special. First off, we haven't really seen a quarterback that can ever run like this other than Michael Vick number 7. He was a game changer just that way. But I'll tell you what. I went to like Elvis Presley when I first heard this topic, OK?
TANK WILLIAMS: Oh, yeah, yeah.
CHRIS SIMMS: I mean, what? White guy singing and dancing and doing crazy moves? People didn't know what the hell to think when they saw Elvis Presley, game changer to me.
TANK WILLIAMS: Absolutely, yeah.
CHRIS SIMMS: OK, I'm going to throw one other name out to you, Oprah, what? Game changer, OK? African-American woman, best talking show in the history of the world. Everybody goes on there. She'll make superstars and the toughest men cry that you'd ever seen. She's amazing, game changer like Lamar Jackson.
TANK WILLIAMS: And like if we want to take it right back to sports, but just a different one, how about Steph Curry? Because a lot of people doubted him because he was a smaller point guard, didn't really play defense. They didn't know how his game would transition.
All he does is shoot threes. But instead of trying to change his game and become something that he wasn't, he embraced shooting the threes and said, all right, you want to talk about me shooting threes, I'm going to just start shooting them from farther out and then started draining them to the point to where like that's all you see in the league now, whether it's him doing it or guys on other teams. And then I think most importantly, because did you see that video of Harbaugh when he was sitting on the bench with Lamar and he was like, man, little kids are going to be wearing that 8 jersey. And I feel like that's what--
CHRIS SIMMS: Yeah.
TANK WILLIAMS: --kids are doing now when they see Steph Curry, when they see Lamar Jackson. They look at the film and be like, at one point, they didn't think that athletic of quarterbacks could play in the NFL. Like, why did they have to fight so hard to change the narrative? Why can't people just embrace what they're doing?
CHRIS SIMMS: Don't hate, appreciate. And that's what we're trying to do with Lamar Jackson right now. That's my phrase for that. And I hear you. I mean, in sports too, maybe not to the degree because Steph Curry is a good one.
You're right. He's given every kid hope. Because they just go, if I practice hard enough and shoot enough threes and do that, I don't need to be like some freak of nature that 6'8" and has a 45-inch vertical to be awesome in the NBA.
But I did think of LeBron James. I did. I'm not going to lie, because he is a game changer. I mean, come on. I mean, he's like one of the greatest passers I've ever seen. In his prime, he was one of the best defenders ever. He wasn't selfish. Great community guy. I mean, you can't say negative things about LeBron. I'm on the LeBron bandwagon, obviously, as I'm telling you. But he's still a game changer, just like Lamar Jackson is.
TANK WILLIAMS: Yeah, me too. And I think another name that popped up for me too-- well, actually, two more. One is Serena Williams. Like I really didn't watch tennis until I saw Serena.
And whether it was like people trying to talk bad about her, about her braids or just just because like she played a stronger, more athletic game than people were accustomed to seeing, but then it's one of those things where she had to continue to play well, stack up wins. And then the narrative finally changed. But even still to this day, there are people who try to doubt how great she was.
And I think my last name I'm going to throw out, Barack Obama. Because, I mean, no one had seen a Black president before. And so there was a lot of vitriol on the other side. But it was one of those things where he embraced who he was as a person and tried to convey that on a regular basis. And I think regardless of whether you love him or hate him, you have to respect who he was as a man. And I think that's what Lamar is trying to prove here at the NFL level is being one of the most exceptional quarterbacks that we've seen in a while.
CHRIS SIMMS: Definitely, you're you're exactly right. I like that you brought up that last one. That's a good one. I still feel like people are fighting that narrative about President Obama. And, you know, another one along those lines, Tiger Woods, legitimate athletes too. Kids who were like, I could be good at basketball or baseball, but, damn, Tiger Woods in golf, that looks cool. I'm going to start doing that. And he dominated and whooped butt forever--
TANK WILLIAMS: Right.
CHRIS SIMMS: --and is surely a game changer along those lines.
TANK WILLIAMS: And the two things that they have-- well, the one thing that those two have in common, must-see TV.
CHRIS SIMMS: Yes.