How the Baltimore Ravens are opening a new window of success
Ozzie Newsome has had a good run with the Ravens to say the very least. He may be setting up a positive start for the Eric DeCosta era. Here is why the Ravens should be excited about the next several years:
The Baltimore Ravens have a defense that is pretty much built for years to come. The big thing in question is retaining C.J. Mosley’s services for the long-term. Other than that the Ravens have plenty of players in their prime and players who are ready to have breakout seasons. Brandon Williams is an elite defensive lineman. Michael Pierce and Willie Henry are young defensive linemen with a bright future.
Matt Judon is becoming a star at the outside linebacker position and Tyus Bowser and Tim Williams are both players who have plenty of potential. Marlon Humphrey is going to be a number one cornerback at some point and Maurice Cannady and Tavon Young are both capable of becoming a strong number two cornerback in the future. DeShon Elliott is the future free safety, and Eric Weddle is the perfect mentor.
Balancing things out:
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On offense the Ravens drafted the quarterback of the future in Lamar Jackson. They also gave him two dependable tight ends from the college ranks, Hayden Hurst and Mark Andrews. The Ravens still need to find long-term answers at the wide receiver position, however Michael Crabtree will give the Ravens two or three good seasons. The Ravens have three good running backs all with limited wear and tear with Alex Collins, Buck Allen and Kenneth Dixon. Intriguingly the Ravens don’t even know how good Dixon could end up being.
The guard position is one of the deepest on the depth chart. That’s a good thing, because the Ravens will have to find Marshal Yanda’s replacement at some point. Alex Lewis, Nico Siragusa and James Hurst should all be strong performers at either left or right guard. Ronnie Stanley and Orlando Brown Jr. have a chance to be bookend tackles for a very long time, and the NFL could become very jealous of that tackle combination.
The Bottom Line:
Baltimore still has to show that progress is coming to the offensive side of things. The good news is that there is a lot to look forward to. If Jackson is the real deal, the offense will be just fine one way or another. The Ravens focused on defense for years, but they could end up becoming a balanced team moving forward.
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Newsome drafted 12 players this year. If only half of these picks pan out (assuming Jackson is one of them) then the Ravens are struck gold. The Ravens should be excited for the 2019 season as it is the teams best chance since 2014 to have a truly great season. That being said, the next five years of Ravens football, may be very exciting.