3 things the Baltimore Ravens are banking on this year
3. The offensive line will be okay:
It’s not a popular opinion to say that the Baltimore Ravens will be okay without Marshal Yanda, but the Ravens seem to believe it. They added two offensive linemen in the draft and signed D.J. Fluker, but the Ravens didn’t overreact to Yanda’s sudden absence. It’s almost like they knew this was coming and they planned for it. It’s exactly like that. The Ravens are hoping that they have enough options on the interior of the offensive line that it will work out one way or another. Again, the Ravens are making a bold decision, but they aren’t putting all their eggs in one basket ( A theme of DeCosta decisions).
The Ravens have Matt Skura, Bradley Bozeman, Patrick Mekari and D.J. Fluker, who have all accrued a varying degree of experience as a starter. If you want to count Ben Powers start in the season finale against the Steelers, that five options between the guard and center positions that could work out. While none of them are as good as Yanda, none of them sound all that bad. It’s not like the Ravens are in a pizza shop that only sells cauliflower crust pizza with zucchini, pineapple and sardines as the toppings. In this metaphor they can pick whatever crust and toppings they want.
In addition to the names we’ve already gone through the Ravens have Ben Bredeson and Tyre Phillips coming in as rookies with upside. There is no rule that says just because you lose a future member of the Pro Football Hall of Fame your offensive line is going to evaporate into nothingness. The Ravens are betting that they can still have a great unit. This is the offseason equivalent of the “next man up” philosophy.
The Ravens are also banking on the fact that they have the most athletic quarterback in the NFL. The Ravens are also banking on the fact that run blocking is what they need the most out of their linemen and they only bring linemen who can do that in Greg Roman”s offense.
There you have it. These are the three things that the purple and black are banking on this season. They are betting on the offensive line. They are betting on Matt Judon picking up the sack numbers. They are betting on Marquise Brown being a superstar. There is a risk involved every thing the Ravens are banking on but it’s hard to argue with their train of thought.