The 2015 season has long been in the rear view for offensive coordinator Marc Trestman and his players.
Trestman now has a full year under his belt under a system already in place. It appears that we will see more of his personal stamp on the offense installed by Gary Kubiak during his one-year tenure in Baltimore.
Harbaugh explained the challenges of a coordinator running an offense that he didn’t install. “We’re going to be in much better shape, in terms of building the system from that standpoint than we were the first year, because it’s even tougher – the point about the coach coming in – when you’re a coordinator coming in to basically keep a system in place,” remarked John Harbaugh.
“Obviously, that’s challenging. Marc was well prepared to do that because of his experience. But now the system is more his than it was last year. I think it’s more ours than it was last year,” he added. “Collectively, we’ve spent a lot of time building the offensive system. We have a lot of confidence in what we’re doing. We’re excited about what we built into it, and Marc Trestman is the main architect of that because he’s the offensive coordinator, and he’s really very well equipped to do that.”
Trestman echoed Harbaugh’s sentiment.
“It’s a little unnatural when you [first] come in, and there is a pre-existing offense in place,” stated Trestman. “It was a very good offense, as we all know. But I spent three months on it, trying to make sure that I simulated the things that were necessary for me to do my job.”
The results weren’t what he would have hoped in his first season. In 2015, the Ravens offense finished 14th in total yards per game, ranking eighth in passing and 26th in rushing. With his franchise quarterback, featured running back and star wide receiver all returning from injury in 2016, Trestman’s comfort level as the team heads into 2016 is high.
“Certainly this year … Coming into it a day after the season is over, you feel you are in a lot better position, because you aren’t using those 90 days out of 120 to learn another offense. It’s the offense you know now and the things that you’ve utilized and blended together to put together what our coaches have put together. That’s the Raven offense.”
One item that has been under scrutiny since Trestman took over the offensive reins last season is the run/pass ratio. Numerous times in 2015, many of us found ourselves questioning whether the Ravens gave up on the run far too early on in their contests. In his first year, the Ravens had just 383 run attempts compared to 676 passing attempts.
Trestman would like to close that gap as he and the offense prepare for training camp.
“We’re always looking at ourselves as a team that should be able to run the ball first,” quipped Trestman. “That’s just the way we want to play it, and everything starts with the physicality of our run game, and the physicality of our runner. That’s how we coach offense here, and everything starts there.”
While there was just no certainty to be found as to just what the identity of the Ravens offense will be in 2016, their three-day mandatory minicamp gave us no real clues.
Until the team starts the true instillation of the offense in training camp, we will be left wondering whether the words uttered by Trestman are just coach speak or the real deal.
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