With Caldwell Gone It’s Time For The Ravens To Make A Splash at Offensive Coordinator.

Featured, Sports and Bets — January 14, 2014 at 4:34 pm by

We all know that Jim Caldwell is taking the Detroit Lions head coaching job.  I’m happy for him, he seems well-respected around the league and I think that job will be a good fit for him.  The Lions need discipline and they need a statesman who keeps his cool and knows how to win.  That’s Caldwell, he’s got the rings to prove it.  Meanwhile, back here in Baltimore, Caldwell’s hiring leaves a vacancy at offensive coordinator.  The Ravens will have plenty of names, big and small, to choose from, but one thing is for sure, they need to make a splash with this hire.  Which means one of two things, they either need to hire one of the biggest name out there, or they need to bring in a completely new style of offense coached by a younger, up and coming type of coach.

The list of potential candidates is long.  Gary Kubiak, Rob Chudzinski, and Norv Turner are all coaches who have been there, done that.  Kubiak, is of the Mike Shanahan, old Denver Broncos style of offense.  If you hated zone blocking this season, you’ll despise this guy.  But Kubiak’s team always seemed to rank in the top 10 offensively though, even when he was the head coach in Houston.  Hell, in his system, even the now tragic Matt Shaub was consistently throwing for 4,000 yards .  Kubiak is an experienced play caller who has had a ton of success in the NFL.  But for several reasons, I don’t feel like Kubiak would be a good fit here.  We saw how this O-Line did with zone blocking as their primary blocking scheme early this past season, and Flacco seems at his best in the pocket, not outside of it on bootlegs, rollouts, and misdirection, which is what the passing game in Kubiak’s system is built around.

Rob Chudzinski might be a bit more intriguing. Chudzinski is the one and done head coach of the Browns last year.  Chud was the Browns offensive coordinator back when the Browns went 10-6 and just missed the playoffs in 2007.  More recently, he was the O.C. in Carolina for Cam Newton’s first two seasons.  In Newton’s rookie year the Panthers finished 5th in points scored.  But Chudzinski is a disciple of the Air Coryell/ Norv Turner/ Cam Cameron base offense that the Ravens currently run, and if you’re going to continue to run that base offense, why not go with the guy who is considered the best at running it?  Who’s that guy?  That guy is Norv Turner.

The good thing about Norv coming here would of course be that you would be getting one of the best O.C.’s in the game.  The other thing is that the base offense wouldn’t change that much since Turner runs the same old Don Coryell type offense from back in the day in San Diego.  Of course Turner has his own philosophies, plays, and techniques, but the thought process is the same.  Strong running game with a vertical passing attack and an emphasis on strong tight end involvement.  Turner has added to this a strong screen passing game (see LaDainian Tomlinson) and  knack for getting the most out of his quarterbacks.  (see Troy Aikman and Philip Rivers.)  Turner would seem to be a perfect fit here.  But he is still under contract with the Browns, and until they hire a head coach, Norv won’t know his fate.  I highly doubt the Browns would let him out of his deal so he could come on down to B-Town.  So if Turner even is on the Ravens’ radar, he probably won’t be available to interview until at least after the AFC Championship, and that’s if the Browns go after Bronco O.C. Adam Gase.  So Turner’s a big maybe when it comes to being available.

If the Ravens  can’t hire Turner then they should find someone fresh.   Someone to come in here, wipe the slate clean, and install a whole new offense.  I understand the Ravens are high on Jim Hostler, who is currently within the Ravens organization.  No offense to Jim, but if we can’t get Norv, bring us somebody new who brings a whole new offense with them.  Something different and exciting.  Something truly up-tempo, and crisp, and vicious.  We have Flacco, let him rip it.  Let’s go for broke and really make the offense the focal point of this team.  In this case the person the Ravens should bring in is Ben McAdoo, the quarterbacks coach for the Green Bay Packers.  McAdoo is beloved by his players in Green Bay, and he would bring with him the fast-breaking and innovative Mike McCarthy offense.  McAdoo has been a part of an offensive staff that seems to get a ton out of every wide receiver they get their hands on. Quarterbacks flourish in the system.  They even got Matt Flynn paid and he has performed well again recently within that system.  Want to run and gun, Baltimore?  Then bring the real gunslinger mentality here. Problem is, they would have to get McAdoo in here quick.  He has already spoken to the Dolphins, and the Giants have also shown strong interest.  He’s even getting some head coaching consideration.

Anyway for me, this is a two horse race.  It’s either Norv Turner or Ben McAdoo.

So step up Ozzie.  Bring us that offensive leader we’ve been begging for.  Make a splash.

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