Who’s to blame for Ravens mediocrity?

Sports and Bets — October 25, 2017 at 4:39 pm by

If you ever have the chance, during Ravens games I recommend scrolling through twitter.  You will see some just fantastic commentary on the current state of the Baltimore Ravens.  It ranges from Joe Flacco is god awful to blow it up and everything in between.  So with that same mindset, I thought I would join in the hysteria and point my finger of blame.

From 2000-2012 the Baltimore Ravens were easily one of the most successful franchises in the NFL.  They posted a winning percentage of 60%, made the playoffs nine times, played in 4 AFC Championship games and won 2 Super Bowls.  They were a model of consistency, and when they did have the slight hiccup of a season they quickly bounced back.  During that stretch the Ravens only had three losing seasons, after each of those losing seasons they made the playoffs the very next year.  Since 2012 the Ravens have had 1 winning season, two 8-8 seasons and they went 5-11 in 2015.  The Ravens have gone 34-37 including 2017 so far, the only thing that the Ravens have been consistent at is being inconsistent.  So, what happened?

Let’s take a look at Baltimore’s favorite punching bag, Joe Flacco.  Now, I’ll be the first to admit, when it comes to my boy Joey Flaccs, I’m usually quicker to defend than criticize.  That being said, Joe Flacco has not played very well the last few seasons, but there are some reasons.  One, the offensive line is not good, like at all.  Other than Marshall Yanda, who is injured, not many guys on that offensive would be regular starters on other teams.  Second, the lack of weapons around Flacco, which speaks to a bigger problem I’ll tap into a little later.  Look at the receivers, tight ends, running backs, none are play makers.  I’m not saying Flacco doesn’t deserve any criticism, that’s absurd, but for people who are seriously calling for Ryan Mallet to be the QB are completely out of their minds, just stop it.

For me there is only one logical place to look, Ozzie Newsome and if you want you can tie John Harbaurgh in with him, depending on how involved he is with selecting players.  Now before I get a ton of hate, I have nothing but respect for Ozzie Newsome, who was at one time a great General Manager.  All you have to do is look at the recent track record.  The draft used to be a strong point for the Ravens, both in the early rounds and some second and third day gems hidden in the rough, but not lately.  Here, I’ll let you look for yourself.

 

https://www.pro-football-reference.com/teams/rav/draft.htm

 

When was the last time the Ravens had a good draft?  Not great but just good?  I’m not saying that every Ravens draft pick needs to be a stud but the amount of players the Ravens have selected over the last 3-4 years who have contributed little to nothing to the Ravens is staggering.  One of the big talking points entering this draft this season was how much was needed on the offensive side of the ball.  So the Ravens decided to go with defense their first four picks and the only offensive players they took were guards.  The wide receiver position has always been a point of concern for the Ravens, two players that jump off the page that were pretty attainable are Ju-Ju Smith-Schuster & Cooper Kupp, both have been contributors to their drafted team.  The Ravens have missed on several players in the draft and have brought in free agents that are past their prime.  The way the Ravens have tried to build teams in today’s NFL has been wrong, look at their record, again 34-37, that’s mediocre.

Ozzie Newsome is an absolute legend, not just for his playing days but for what he’s done in the front office of the Baltimore Ravens.  Which is why it makes this extremely difficult to do, but sometimes you have to take a look at the bigger picture.  The injuries have been bad, but let’s be honest the Ravens were not a great team before the injuries.  If the Ravens miss out on the playoffs this season they will be in the longest stretch of missing the postseason  since not making the playoffs their first 4 years of existence.  There is way you can handle letting go of Ozzie Newsome and have everyone with their head held high.  It’s something that needs to be done sooner rather than later, because if not, we’ll continue to get more of these mediocre teams not making the playoffs.

 

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