Baltimore Ravens: 3 biggest needs based on 2018 season examples
What do the Baltimore Ravens need most? Let’s look at the 2018 season for clues.
Need #1. Offensive Line Help
The Baltimore Ravens need offensive line improvements and they need it badly. The inside of their offensive line is a Marshal Yanda injury away from being terrible. James Hurst is what he is. He’s versatile in the sense that he can play tackle and guard but he does neither all that well. Matt Skura and Bradley Bozeman aren’t going to cut it at center. The Ravens are two starting offensive linemen away from having a dominant starting five. Ronnie Stanley and Orlando Brown Jr. are sufficient and then some at left and right tackle. If you fill the spots in between them, Greg Roman will have what he needs for a run first offense.
You don’t have to look much farther than the playoff game against the Chargers for an example of poor offensive line play. The Chargers knew what the Ravens wanted to do. Baltimore basically lined up and said “You know what’s coming but can you stop it?” The answer was unequivocally yes. This wasn’t even a good day for the tackles, but the interior of the offensive line offered no pass protection and little push for the run game. Take out the final push at the end and the Ravens offense got nothing done. The middle of the offensive line was putrid.
Then there was the fact that sans Jackson, the Ravens couldn’t run the ball at all. When Joe Flacco was the quarterback, Jackson had to be inserted to boost the running game. When Jackson was the quarterback the running game took off. It’s not fair to call Jackson’s offense as a gimmick, but the Ravens weren’t dominating on the ground all because of the offensive line. When the Chargers figured it out, the offensive line got steam rolled.