One of newly signed wide receiver Steve Smith’s selling points on joining the Ravens was his admiration of first-year offensive coordinator Gary Kubiak.
“Well, [offensive coordinator] coach [Gary] Kubiak, I know his system,” Smith said during his conference call with members of the media on Friday. “I’ve seen his system; I’ve seen the very creative ways they’ve gotten other guys the ball.”
“I want to be a part of that. One of the things I’ve seen for myself – I don’t see myself in coach Kubiak’s system like [Texans wide receiver] Andre Johnson – I see the complementary dude of [former Texans wide receiver] Kevin Walter. I see how he contributed and how he was instrumental in getting Andre the ball but also getting his own opportunities. I see how he used [former Texans TE Owen] Daniels. So, he used a lot of guys in his system, and I wanted to go into a system that I could be utilized but I could also benefit from other great players.”
After spending the 2013 season with Carolina Panthers with first-year offensive coordinator Mike Shula, Smith was still heavily utilized as Carolina’s number one wide receiver despite tight end Greg Olson having a team high 73 receptions for 816 yards. Both receiving threats saw 109 targets from Panthers quarterback Cam Newton.
While Smith is unlikely to be the Ravens’ number one wide receiver in 2014, Smith is okay with that and is ready to embrace his teammates in Baltimore.
“I think Torrey Smith is going to be a fantastic player. They’ve got some [players] – Jacoby Jones, Ray Rice – they’ve got some guys that are already established. It takes a lot of pressure off of me, and I look forward to that.”
Add in red-zone threat Marlon Brown and the likely selection of a wide receiver in May’s upcoming draft, and the Ravens could be looking at their best wide receiver corps in ages – on paper, anyway.
Fans are quick to point out that plenty of holes remain for the Ravens to fill along their offensive line. Trust me: the front office knows that, and will act accordingly. With all the talk this offseason about improving on the offensive side of the ball, Ozzie won’t let the Ravens 2013 debacle happen again in 2014.
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