Around Lamar Jackson, the Ravens have built an offense built for running the ball. They control the time of possession just as well as the military academies and wear down their opponents. JK Dobbins, Gus Edwards, and Lamar Jackson carry the load on the ground and have helped Baltimore become a top-five rushing offense.
Mark Andrews has become a top tight end in the league and tight ends have become the top options as pass catchers as well as contributing as blockers. The defense has also been solid and that is a tribute to good drafting by the Ravens organization. This is all great, but unless the Ravens dedicate themselves to having a more balanced offense, they will not be successful. It’s not the issue of they can’t throw the ball, the issue is they won’t. And that’s a problem.
By drafting Jackson and Hayden Hurt in the first round in the same draft class and speedster Marquise Brown in the first round a year later, many felt this would be an elite passing team. But with Hurst being traded to Atlanta after failing to be a consistent blocking tight end, Brown not getting targets, and the coaches not letting Jackson throw, they have been stagnant through the air and have become a very predictable offense.
The receiver position has been a problem for them, and the idea was to bring in subpar talent and promise them opportunities that they never got. Willie Snead and Dez Bryant after not playing for two years was the solution they thought would solve everything.
Really Baltimore? Really? Patrick Richard the fullback and part-time defensive lineman has gotten more opportunities to catch the ball then some of these receivers on the roster. Shaking my head and so are the fans. They lack dimension and they lack pop in the passing game.
Number One Reciever?
They still don’t have a real number one receiver even after drafting Rashod Bateman in the first round from Minnesota and Tylan Wallace in the fourth round from Oklahoma State in the past draft. The rest of the draft picks were players on defense and those who can help them run the ball, which really doesn’t make sense. Teams know if they can limit the read option and power run game, on third down and late-game situations they have to pass and won’t be able to execute. The Ravens can change that, but it remains to be seen if they will.
One thing the Ravens are missing is a traditional slot receiver, and they may have an answer from an unlikely source- backup quarterback Trace McSorley. He’s athletic, fast, and as a runner, he’s shifty and elusive. He denied taking workouts as a defensive back during the draft process, but has the ability to understand the offense and the quick feet to make an impact as a receiver and punt returner, Devin Duvernay is primarily the kick returner. Speaking of Duvernay, the Ravens should be using him and his speed more on offense along with James Proshe who hasn’t even gotten a real opportunity to contribute yet besides on special teams.
And by the way Baltimore, have you forgotten that you spent a third-round pick on Miles Boykin a few years ago? To keep the theme of pass-catchers going, they also drafted running back Justice Hill in 2019 from Oklahoma State. He is a very skilled pass-catching back with amazing speed and acceleration. Backs like that offer a change of pace and another element of depth in an offense.
Where has he been? You guessed it, on the bench. This has become a stubborn one-trick pony of an offense. Gus Edwards is a great downhill runner but he can’t do much else, and JK Dobbins isn’t great with break-away speed as a receiver and doesn’t get the ball thrown to him that much. In order to get past tough teams in the playoffs, more needs to be done to set this team up for success. First things first, let Lamar throw the ball.
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