OK here we go again, another NFL Preseason!
I know this is everyone’s favorite time of year! Alright, maybe not. But there are storylines that are interesting this time around: The battle of the Safeties; the performances that decide the WR depth chart; and of course, the backup QB job.
But these are not the things I am worried about.
I believe that whoever Coach Harbaugh decides to put in, they have the talent to be part of a Super-Bowl caliber team. I am however concerned about how Cam Cameron will decide to utilize all of these options that the team has picked up during the offseason.
Last year, I know that many Ravens fans, including me, were disappointed that the team did not use the players that had successful careers in the past. For example, Donte Stallworth was brought in last season to be used as another weapon for Joe Flacco to sling the ball to. His final 2010 stats… 2 receptions for 81 yards.
In my mind this is just unacceptable.
One more thing that made me question if the organization knows how to exploit key players was the little use of Le’ron McClain last season. In 2008 and 2009 combined, McClain totaled 1082 yards and 12 TD’s. In 2010, this bulldozer of a Fullback had only 85 yards on 28 carries. Once again this is unacceptable.
In 2011, we have the weapons to make a run at the Super Bowl. That is, if we are smart with the game plan.
Bringing in Tyrod Taylor was a fascinating draft pick in this year’s Draft.
When the team drafted him I was thinking “WHY”. I thought this because I assumed that we would bring in a veteran to work behind Flacco.
But, after thinking about what he could do to a defenses plan, my opinion has changed.
The Ravens should work Tyrod Taylor into the offense often this season. First of all, many compare him to Michael Vick saying that he has the talent to be the next Vick. Secondly, He would give the opposing team another threat to worry about.
If a defense is planning their strategy against Joe Flacco, and Tyrod Taylor comes into the game, the defense will have to completely shift their plans. Taylor can scramble and make elusive plays. Where Joe Flacco is often very immobile.
I really want to see Cam Cameron mix in Tyrod with the offensive scheme because not only would it give the team just another option for more plays, it would also be very exciting to see what plans they design.
Another young playmaker that I want to see stand out this year is the rookie from Maryland Torrey Smith. During Smith’s senior year at MD he posted eye-popping stats! He had 67 receptions for 1055 yards and 12 TD’s. He was often used as the Terps’ deep threat.
A deep threat is just what the Ravens could use. Now that Mason has forgone the Ravens and is now a Jet, Torrey Smith has to step up with his explosive speed and the ability to stretch the field like Ravens fans want.
There is an interesting storyline that I find will be an interesting one for Cameron during this preseason – the two second year tight ends, Ed Dickson and Dennis Pitta. Both deserve a chance at the starting spot.
Ed Dickson has proven to me that he can be a good option as he was used in times where Heap got hurt and filled in well. Pitta really has never really gotten a chance to play during his rookie season with us.
Pitta was a superior players during his 4 seasons with BYU and I believe it is time for this organization to give him his first real chance.
All of these weapons we have could give us a step up. You cannot rely on one single person to carry the load all year long. For example Ray Rice was the starting running back and got most of the carries. He also had 63 receptions. Only one catch away from team leader Anquan Boldin. I am happy that Rice was productive but we have more weapons that we could have used.
If you can get more options into the games, the opponent’s defensive coordinator has to plan for so many more things. Last year if Rice wasn’t in the game, I think we would have had trouble. We need to use more weapons so that if a key player like Rice goes down with an injury, we know that the players that we do have, have experience and can step in and use their skills to the offenses benefit.
So here’s to Cam making good choices and producing happy fans.