Friday evening, the Ravens made an announcement:
Statement from the Baltimore Ravens: pic.twitter.com/NSog0QWx1P
— Baltimore Ravens (@Ravens) December 21, 2018
RSR staff react to the news here…
Santa Bisciotti just threw a big ol’ lump of coal in every Ravens fan’s stocking! I am trying to come up with something the Ravens could have done on a Friday evening to ruin my night that is up there with announcing a John Harbaugh extension.
Going out and signing Jay Cutler last-minute to start against the Chargers? Throwing out plans to put a roof over M&T Bank Stadium? Entering into a new partnership with Iron City Beer?
Nope. None of that would be this bad.
Look, I had made peace with the fact that, if the Ravens indeed make the playoffs, then Harbs will be back (despite what Mike Preston was trying to sell us earlier this week). But they didn’t do it yet! The probability of yet another late-December collapse, another 8-8 season, another January on the couch, is just as high (if not higher) than a running-of-the-table resulting in a playoff berth.
This is premature, in my opinion. It’s a bit of a slap in the face to the fans, if you ask me. And all it does is give us visions of several more 7-9 to 9-7 seasons, courtesy of Jeff Fisher 2.0.
John Harbaugh is a good coach; I’m not saying he isn’t. But he isn’t Bill Belichick, and nothing he has done (especially lately) justifies his becoming that rarest of creatures – an NFL head coach who stays in one job for close to 15 years.
John Harbaugh and the Ravens have become Marvin Lewis and the Bengals. A coach and a team that are content existing in a constant world of mediocrity. Bisciotti has clearly morphed into an owner who is letting his emotion and personal relationship impact his decision making. For a guy who has a reputation for running successful businesses that’s surprising. Looking forward to another year of Marty and John leading the Ravens to a 9-7 campaign in 2019.
Is this an effort to scout potential head coaches for the 2020 season?
Without knowing the details of the extension, it’s impossible to know, but that’s how it strikes me.
To a degree, it makes sense, but it is frustrating for the fans that wanted to see him gone after four years of mediocrity. Eric Decosta will want his guy leading the team obviously, so maybe he is seeing what Harbaugh can do with a different roster. With Joe Flacco most likely gone, as well as the potential of Brandon Williams, Jimmy Smith, Marshal Yanda, C.J Mosley, and Terrell Suggs all moving on, it is a chance to see if Harbaugh can coach with a completely new roster.
It would be hard to build a good core around Lamar Jackson without a sense of stability in the coaching staff. And who knows, maybe we find that offensive genius we’ve been looking for and Harbaugh just makes sure everyone is doing their job and the team works. As frustrating as it is, we can’t judge this move until the 2019 season comes around and we see what the overall roster looks like, and then we can see what the future looks like in Baltimore.
Not a fan of this move. This really becomes even more head-scratching if the Ravens miss the playoffs again this year. You have to wonder/hope/think that maybe a caveat to this extension is that Harbs must find a new OC. Marty has to go.
More importantly, this is not good news for Lamar’s development. Does anyone really trust Harbs and his staff to develop LJ as an NFL QB? I know I don’t!
The Ravens are slowly trending to Bengals territory of being happy that they are still in the playoff race in Week 16, instead of demanding more.
This move was ultimately about the success that John Harbaugh has had over the past five games, not the past five years. Harbaugh and his staff have done a pretty good job since Lamar Jackson became the starter, and Bisciotti sees something to build on moving forward. After all, there’s no guarantee that a new coach comes in and has the success that Harbs has had with LJ.
I’m still a bit skeptical due to the past five years but also can’t deny the success their approach has had with Lamar under center. It’s not where it needs to be yet, but I think there’s something to build on here.