Baltimore Ravens Team Overview 2020
Ravens Team Overview
Steve Bisciotti. Bisciotti is a classic example of starting a business out of his basement at age 23 and growing it into one of the largest businesses in the world. He owns Aerotek and this grew into Allegis Group.
This business is known as a recruiting firm. Bisciotti is worth around $4.4 Billion dollars. In 2000, Bisciotti bought the Ravens and then in 2007 fired head coach Brian Billick. He then hired John Harbaugh in 2012. He has won 1 superbowl as owner of the Ravens in 2012.
Eric DeCosta. DeCosta is a long time Ravens employee. He started his career with the Ravens as a player personnel assistant in 1996. He has then worked his way up the ranks to becoming an assistant general manager in 2012.
He then took over the general manager duties in 2019 from Ozzie Newsome. As a Steelers fan, I never like admitting this but the Ravens have always drafted pretty well. DeCosta has done a good job in my opinion of his 2019 and 2020 draft classes.
He has also made a lot of great moves in trades that has this team littered with talent. We will see what they can do in his 3rd season as GM. They lost a home playoff game in which they were heavily favored. It will be interesting to see how they respond in 2020.
John Harbaugh. Harbaugh is most known for being the Brother of Jim Harbaugh who was the 49ers head coach and now the University of Michigan football head coach. But he isn’t overshadowed by his big brother.
In fact John beat Jim in the Superbowl in 2012. Harbaugh splashed onto the scene in Baltimore as the head coach in 2008. I use splash because Harbaugh didn’t have any head coaching experience or offensive/defensive coordinating experience.
He was a longtime special teams coordinator for the Philadelphia Eagles from 1998 to 2007. This was during the time that Andy Reid was with the Eagles. Harbaugh has only had 1 losing season with the Ravens since he has been the head coach.
He has done a really good job as the head coach. He now has the most talented team since he has been with the Ravens. He is looking to rebound after a disappointing last 2 seasons.
Fantasy Outlook for the Ravens
QB: Lamar Jackson
He is Big Truzz for a reason. But the person you really need to put your trust in is Greg Roman. Roman has been able to duplicate success in both Buffalo and San Francisco. Roman says he spends everyday trying to figure out how to make Baltimore not look the same in 2020.
I really trust Roman to have this offense in the top 5 in the NFL. I think they rush Lamar a little less than 176 times like they did in 2019. Let’s just do his worst case scenario numbers for 2020 and decide if he is worth taking in the 1st or 2nd round. Worst case, I say Jackson finished with 150 rushing attempts for 1,000 yards and 6 rushing touchdowns. Worst case, Jackson should throw for 2,800 yards and 27 touchdowns.
Those numbers will give him around 360 fantasy points in most fantasy leagues. Over the last 5 to 8 NFL seasons there have only been about 7 NFL quarterbacks to get to 360 points not including Jackson.
Again, those numbers would be Jackson’s worst case scenario. Say you want to lower it a little more to 340 fantasy points. You would still easily have yourself a top 3 fantasy quarterback. The real enticing thing about drafting Lamar as your fantasy quarterback are his last 4 games of the season which will be during your fantasy playoffs. He plays the Browns, Jaguars, Giants and Bengals.
It doesn’t get much better than that. If Lamar is available for you to draft in the 2nd round then you need to draft him. Even if that means you are the 13th pick. I wouldn’t fault anybody for drafting him in the late 1st round.
The only concern is obvious and that is he could get hurt. It’s something you would have to take into consider and draft a quality back up in the 9th or 10th round.
RB: Mark Ingram
With the Ravens drafting JK Dobbins in the 2nd round and Ingram not being used in the passing game in Greg Roman’s run heavy offense, I think this is the year to finally say goodbye to Ingram on your fantasy team.
The Ravens ran the ball 596 times in 2019. That led the NFL. However, in the past, Roman has been top 5 in rushing attempts but his attempts are usually around 500, not 600. I think Roman tries to incorporate more passes into this offense with quick screens and deep balls for Lamar this season.
Roman and Harbaugh are smart people and they realize that they will need Lamar to be able to throw the ball against good teams. They should groom Lamar this year in doing so. This means a return to around 500 rushing attempts.
Between Lamar, Gus Edwards, JK Dobbins and Mark Ingram, I think Ingram only gets 150 rushing attempts. I still think Ingram has around 4.8 yards per carry so this would give him around 720 yards rushing.
He should get close to 10 total touchdowns and maybe throw in 25 catches for 175 yards too. This would give him around 165 points in half PPR leagues. That would only be good enough to be around the 22nd best running back.
Ingram is being drafted at around the 45 pick in mock drafts and that would be a terrible pick to make. There is very little upside to Ingram. Just stay away from him in 2020.
RB: JK Dobbins
He has the same forecast as Mark Ingram. He isn’t worth having on your fantasy team at all. It is an extremely crowded backfield.
WR: Marquise Brown
Brown has said this off season is the year to bet on him exploding as a fantasy wide receiver. I actually really like the idea of Brown having a nice season in 2020. The key for him is to stay healthy. He has elite quickness and speed to have great numbers.
He is also being drafted around the 5th round and 6th round of fantasy mock drafts. I really like the value of drafting Brown at this spot. I think he easily becomes a fantasy wide receiver 2 by year’s end with the ability to become a potential top 12 wide receiver.
He had 46 catches for 584 yards and 7 touchdowns last season in 11 starts. That was only his rookie season. I think Brown’s worst case numbers are 60 catches for 950 yards and 8 touchdowns. This would be good enough to be around the 17th best fantasy wide receiver in the NFL.
However, I think Brown easily beats these numbers due to Greg Roman throwing more screens in 2020 and how Brown really excelled in college with screen passes. Those will be easy points for Brown to get you week in and week out.
Also, Brown wasn’t at full speed for much of last season. One would assume that there will be a lot of play action bombs to Brown this season too. I would be shocked if Brown isn’t in the top 15 of wide receivers at the season’s end.
WR: Miles Boykins/Willie Snead
Lamar Jackson plans to throw around 275 to 300 passing attempts in 2020. I think Boykins and Snead will only get around 75 attempts each and catch around 50 of those attempts. It won’t be good enough for my fantasy team and I will not be drafting them.
Very little upside in an offense that ran the ball almost 600 times last season.
TE: Mark Andrews
I think Andrews has another really good fantasy season but I will not be drafting him due to him being taken around the 4th round of mock drafts. I am just not a believer in taking a tight end until the 6th round.
Maybe even the 8th round. With that being said, I like Andrews to catch 55 balls for around 600 yards and 8 touchdowns. Even if you believe in drafting tight ends early, this wouldn’t warrant me to draft him as my number 1 tight end in the 4th round.
That would only be good for around 140 fantasy points and 8th best tight end. You should definitely pass on Andrews, mainly because you can get a top WR or RB in the 4th round.
Ravens 2020 Offensive Preview
Greg Roman. Roman is most known for his ability to create an incredible rushing offense. He first started with Jim Harbaugh in San Francisco in 2011 as the offensive coordinator. There he had Colin Kaepernick and Frank Gore.
He did an amazing job in running his QB, Kaepernick, that many other offensive minds have studied Roman ever since. He then went to the Bills to be the OC in 2015 and 2016. There he had LeSean McCoy and led the league in rushing in both seasons.
He then joined the Ravens as an analyst in 2017 and became the offensive coordinator in 2019 after the team realized that they would be permanently moving on from Joe Flacco. In 2019, Roman again led the NFL in rushing yards and also led the NFL in points scored.
The impressive thing about Roman’s offenses is that they have been top 12 in points scored in 6 out of his 7 seasons as an NFL offensive coordinator across 3 distinctly different teams. The other impressive thing to mention is that although Roman led the NFL in rushing yards, he also led the league in passing touchdowns.
Roman is going to run the ball until the cows come home but he did a great job in scheming up passing plays in the red zone for QB Lamar Jackson. In 2020 I wouldn’t expect any different results because they have added a little more talent around Roman. I have read a lot of articles on the 2020 Ravens offense and haven’t found much of anything.
The only thing out of Roman’s mouth has been that they will tweak and update some things. I also think that they will run more screens this season in the passing game. Last season they hardly ran any screens and were one of the least screen throwing teams in the NFL. Wide receiver Marquise Brown excelled at Oklahoma running screens.
The Ravens also drafted a WR, Devin Duvernay, who caught some of the most screen passes in college football last season. Same with the WR they took in the 6th round in James Proche. So I think we could definitely see this in 2020.
I think Roman would be foolish not to try more screens. The other thing I found was that they could use more running backs in personnel groupings. I even hear murmurings of running the Wing T offense that the armed forces teams run in college.
I think its a possibility in some games but I doubt this becomes a regular occurrence. Overall, based off of Roman’s track record, he has always had success in year 2 of his offenses with the same team. I would be shocked if the Ravens aren’t in the top 5 in rushing yards and points by the end of the season.
Ravens 2020 Defensive Preview
Don “Wink” Martindale. Wink is a longtime NFL linebackers coach and also a year as a defensive coordinator in Denver during the 2010 season. He then joined the Ravens in 2012 as a linebackers coach and got promoted to defensive coordinator in 2018.
Now he is the highest paid defensive coordinator in the NFL. It’s pretty impressive given that he has only 2 great seasons of coordinating under his belt and also lost in the playoffs 2 straight seasons in the 1st round at home.
However, Wink does deserve a lot of credit. Last season the Ravens were top 6 in points, rushing yards and passing yards in the NFL. They also were 7th in the NFL in creating turnovers. The thing they weren’t so good at were sacks but I will talk about that a little later. He has been lauded as a creative defensive mind by a lot of his players. Wink blitzed more than any other defense last season.
His defenses are always in attack mode. He also gives his secondary the ability to change coverages on the fly. All of these things have worked really well for Wink and the Ravens. Let’s take a look at the players.
The defensive line got a lot better with the addition of Derek Wolfe, from Denver and Calais Campbell from the Jaguars in the off season. However, the Ravens starting 4 D-lineman will all be 30 years or older. It might not be a concern but it is something to monitor.
Wolfe is a high energy guy who can provide a little bit of pass rushing ability. Wolfe is also a great leader and vocal guy. He will fit in with the Ravens really well. Campbell was named the best 5 technique in the NFL by Wink.
Campbell has the ability to get double digit sacks and also compile 15 or more tackles for loss in the run game. He also has the ability to block down passes and force fumbles. He is a really great NFL player. Backing up Wolfe and Campbell are Jihad Ward, Justin Ellis and rookies Broderick Washington Jr and Justin Madubuike.
Ellis and Ward have a lot of NFL experience but aren’t incredible difference makers. The rookie Madubuike was drafted in the 3rd round out of Texas A&M and is smaller than the normal interior defensive lineman.
Washington is more of a run stopper and was drafted in the 5th round out of Texas Tech. The starting Nose Tackle is Brandon Williams and he is a very good run stopper. These positions will be crucial in 2020 against great teams that can hang with the Ravens.
They will be tested against the run just like the Titans did in the playoffs last season. The outside linebackers will be Pernell McPhee and Matt Judon. Judon had 9 sacks last season and that led the team.
Judon also had 4 forced fumbles and he is overall a really solid to great player for this defense. McPhee isn’t as good as Judon but he has a lot of NFL experience. He doesn’t have very good pass rushing ability but is a big body that can set the edge. The back ups are Tyus Bowser and Jaylon Ferguson.
Both Bowser and Ferguson played a lot last season and they will have big roles in the 2020 defense as well. Bowser has pass rushing ability. He recorded 5 sacks in limited action last season. Ferguson doesn’t have a ton of pass rushing ability but is a really big body.
The outside linebacker position isn’t a great one for the Ravens but it’s not a bad situation either. It just lacks star power. The inside linebackers are both rookies. Patrick Queen is out of LSU and was taken in the 1st round by the Ravens.
The other linebacker is Malik Harrison and he was taken in the 3rd round out of Ohio State. Wink is really high on Queen and so am I. I watched Queen quite a bit due to LSU being really good and I think he will be a great NFL linebacker.
He is really fast and athletic but has incredible instincts and smarts about him too. I think the Ravens got their linebacker for the next 10 years in Queen. Harrison is quite the impressive player as well. Harrison is 6’3” and 250lbs.
He played option quarterback in high school so he is really good laterally. He is super physical and should excel in stopping the run for the Ravens. I don’t know how good he is in coverage and looking at his tape, he doesn’t look like he can cover NFL running backs. He should be strictly used inside the box.
There isn’t much depth behind these 2 rookies. LJ Fort has been an NFL backup most of his career and Chris Board has barely played at all in his 2 seasons.
Overall, this front 7 is a complete overhaul of what was here last season. 4 out of the 7 starters are new to the team or rookies. The other 3 players are average or just pretty good NFL starters. There is a lot of talent amongst these 7 players but the obvious weak link are the linebackers.
I think the 3 down linemen will be pretty damn good for this defense but the 4 linebackers all have question marks. Judon is the best option and Queen and Harrison have a ton of potential but you just don’t know until they play.
There is definitely a lack of great pass rush overall from this front 7. Wink will definitely lead the NFL in blitzing again in 2020 to try and generate sacks.
The secondary has a lot of promise. The cornerbacks are a talented group in Marcus Peters, Marlon Humphrey and injury prone nickelback, Tavon Young.
All 3 of these players are above average cornerbacks in the NFL. Young, although always injured, has been known to be a great slot corner. Peters and Humphrey excel at a couple of things really well.
They are both really good cornerbacks but they can be beat from time to time. The back ups are Jimmy Smith and Anthony Averett. The Ravens probably have the most secure cornerback room in the NFL. They have 5 legitimate starters.
Jimmy Smith is supposed to play a little more safety this year. The starting safeties will be Earl Thomas and Chuck Clark. Thomas is still one of the better safeties in the NFL. He can be physical and has a great ability to read the eyes of the QB.
Clark stepped in really well last season and played well in the box and in coverage. The back ups will be Jimmy Smith, Anthony Levine Sr. and DeShon Elliot.
All 3 of these players are pretty good options as back ups. Overall this secondary group is really good for the Ravens. It is very talented and deep too. The Ravens should be pretty good against the pass this season. For sure a top 10 passing defense and shouldn’t give up too many passing touchdowns either.
If teams are going to score on this defense then it will probably be in the running game. With everything considered, this defense should be a top 5 defense in points scored in 2020.
The reason is first because they have a lot of good players on this defense and a great coach. The other aspect of this will be because the Ravens Offense will control the game by running the ball and putting up points.
Both of those things will keep the Ravens defense fresh and in great positions to play aggressive. However, the thing to keep in mind is how will they play against teams like the Steelers, Chiefs and Titans in 2020.
All 3 of those teams have either the fire power or defense to match up with the Ravens. The Ravens defense is really good but not elite in really any position. I could see them giving up a lot of points to these 3 teams in 2020. This is definitely something to keep an eye on.
Fun Facts about coaches:
The biggest thing to mention about this coaching staff is that they have an 8 person team that is dedicated to analytics. Harbaugh really prides himself on this. Harbaugh also really prides himself on having sound special teams as a previous special teams coordinator.
Ravens Contract Year Players:
LB: Matt Judon
OL: Ronnie Stanley
CB: Jimmy Smith
OL: Matt Skura
DL: Derek Wolfe
LB: Pernell McPhee
Baltimore Ravens Offensive Line Preview
This offensive line is graded really high by a lot of people. It will be one of the better offensive lines in the NFL but I don’t think they will be top 5. The 2 tackles are really good. The left tackle is probably the best in the game in Ronnie Stanely.
He is a monster in run blocking and possibly the best pass blocker in the NFL. The other tackle is Orlando Brown. Brown is a better pass blocker then he is a run blocker. He is still an above average tackle in the NFL and will only be entering his 3rd season.
He is also the son of the late Orlando Brown Sr. So he could definitely develop into a better lineman.
The center is Matt Skura. Skura is coming off a major Knee injury that occurred in week 12 of the 2019 season. Skura should be ready to play early on in the season. He is an average center that is entering his 4th season.
The Ravens have quality interior linemen back ups in case Skura isn’t ready. The Ravens will have to replace a legend at Guard in Marshal Yanda. They have started doing this by drafting 3 offensive lineman in the last 2 drafts either in the 4th or 3rd rounds.
At left guard the Ravens started Bradley Bozeman in 2019. He looks to start again in 2020 but nothing is a lock for Bozeman’s 3rd season. NFL veteran, DJ Fluker has started a lot of games in his career and is a great physical run blocker.
If Fluker doesn’t start over Bozeman then he has a chance to start at right guard. The right guard spot will be between the last 3 drafted lineman or Fluker.
Overall, this line should be fine in 2020. The Ravens have invested enough into this offensive line through the draft and with Fluker that they will be able to tinker around until they like the interior starting lineup. This shouldn’t affect the Ravens at all.