With the regular season coming to a close, there have been some impressive quarterback performances for fans to enjoy across Maryland NFL betting.
Performing well during the NFL season can also have benefits off the field, though, with the likes of Patrick Mahomes and undisputed GOAT Tom Brady both having a massive following online.
To reveal the impact being a quarterback can have on an Instagram following, the team at BetMaryland.com has collected data for 15 high profile QBs who were all active during the 2022-23 season. The team tracked the number (and percentage growth) of follower increases over the course of one year from the regular season pro debut of said QB.
Note that not all current quarterbacks were analyzed, as the likes of Brady and Aaron Rodgers, to name a few, made their pro debuts well before Instagram launched.
Let's just say for Ravens fans nervous about the impending free agency of Lamar Jackson, this research piece helps prove how popular the signal caller is across the country.
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Jackson Saw Largest Follower Growth After His Debut
After analyzing the social media accounts of each quarterback, we can reveal that Lamar Jackson was the NFL’s most influential rookie quarterback on Instagram, having gained 252,300 followers in the 12 months after his debut – a growth of 31%.
Drafted by the Ravens in 2018, Jackson made his first appearance against the Cincinnati Bengals following an injury to incumbent Joe Flacco halfway through his rookie campaign.
Jackson, more than filling the shoes of a Super Bowl champion in Flacco, went on to have a strong 2018 season, resulting in the coaching staff creating a new offensive philosophy centered around his specific skills .
One year on, Jackson led the Ravens to a 14-2 record and unanimously won the MVP award for the 2019 season.
Jackson now is in his fifth season for the Ravens, and he is set to become a free agent once the season is over.
If the power of social media is to be believed, Jackson is in line for a serious payday despite the injuries this season, as his following currently stands at 3.2 million. More importantly, the Ravens offense has struggled in his absence.
Ravens fans are surely nervous about the impending free agency. Wherever he is taking snaps next season, expect Jackson to be an MVP favorite next season at BetMGM Sportsbook Maryland.
The Best of the Rest
Of course, there are other quarterbacks who really managed to make their presence known online. For reference, of the most recent 15 NFL debutants who played in the 2022-23 season, the average Instagram follower growth one year after making their first career start was an increase of 118.6k (or 63%).
Kyler Murray, quarterback for the Arizona Cardinals, came in second in our rankings behind Jackson. With a follower growth of +244,500 in the year after his first career start, Murray managed to reach one million within 12 months – and, as of January 2023, currently has an astounding 1.4 million.
Unfortunately, Murray had his worst year with the Cardinals this season. Adding that to his season-ending ACL injury against the New England Patriots, which also may jeopardize the 2023 season, this year is one to forget.
When he does return to the lineup, Murray will be with a new play-caller following Kliff Kingsbury's firing.
He could be a candidate for Comeback Player of the Year at Maryland mobile betting apps should he perform well.
Patriots quarterback Mac Jones saw the third-largest Instagram follower growth in the year after his debut among all QBs studied. Selected during the first round of the 2021 draft, Jones clearly made a quick impact online, with his following growing from 417,300 on the day of his first career start to 659,600 approximately a year later – a substantial growth of 58%.
Jones has had a solid start to his career, however, his performances throughout the 2022 season left room for some improvement after he struggled without former Pats play-caller Josh McDaniels.
Justin Herbert is up next after Jones, having grown his following by an astonishing +130% from 157,100 on the day of his first career start to 361,100 only a year later.
In his debut Chargers season, he broke multiple rookie records, including the most passing touchdowns (31) and most completions (396).
Herbert is still looking strong in 2022, and will make his playoff debut this Saturday against the Jacksonville Jaguars (8:15 ET, NBC).
The Bengals' Joe Burrow rounds out our top five. Boasting an already impressive 1.18 million followers on the day of his first career start, this increased by +16% to 1.37 million within his rookie year, and as of January 2023 sits at 3.1 million.
The hype surrounding Burrow out of LSU was great, but his rookie season came to an end in Week 11 due to injury.
Burrow came back with a very strong 2022 campaign to say the least, leading the Bengals to the Super Bowl for the first time since 1988.
For this campaign, the team analyzed the Instagram accounts of the most recently debuted NFL QBs who started the 2022 season, ranking them in order of followers gained one year on from their first career NFL start.
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