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Street Talk Running Resources

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The Ravens made one of the most surprising selections of the 2020 NFL Draft when they took J.K. Dobbins in the second round.

Even though the team appeared set at running back with Mark Ingram, Gus Edwards and Justice Hill, general manager Eric DeCosta could not pass on a player like Dobbins. 

Now, the question is whether there will be enough touches for all four of these running backs.

That’s a good problem.

“I think with our offense we want to add as many talented guys as we can at skill positions,” DeCosta said. “You guys have watched us over the last couple years and specifically last year, and we’re a team that likes to run the football. So, having running backs is really, really important. This was a guy that was, in my opinion, one of the very best in college football this year.”

Ingram will enter the 2020 season as the starter, but he turns 31 in December. Edwards is playing on a one-year deal. It’s uncertain whether Hill can carry the load as the primary runner.

In addition, the Ravens run the football more than any other team in the league and broke the NFL’s all-time single-season rushing mark with 3,296 yards last season. The Ravens, led by quarterback Lamar Jackson, were the first team in NFL history to average over 200 (206.0) rushing yards and 200 (201.6) net passing yards per game.

The running attack could be even more fierce this season with Dobbins, who who has the potential to move up the depth chart this season as a rookie. He also has the pedigree to be a dominant runner. Ingram has been impressed with the young player and is confident he’ll be a solid addition to the roster. 

“I like the way he runs the rock, for sure,” Ingram said on the NFL Network. “He reached out to me right after he got drafted. Just shot me his number. Said he’s looking forward to getting to work. I told him, ‘Lets’ go get a ring.’ He said he’s trying to go win a championship. I like his mindset, I like his attitude, and I like the way he runs the ball.”

Dobbins was a dominant runner at Ohio State and ran for a program-record 2,003 yards last season, breaking the previous mark of 1,927 set by Eddie George in 1995. Dobbins finished his three-year Buckeyes career with 4,459 rushing yards, 796 receiving yards and 43 touchdowns.

He is excited to learn from a player like Ingram. 

“Joining Mark Ingram II, I always watched him,” Dobbins said. “He’s a great player, and I can learn a lot from him, I believe. It’s a blessing to be on this team, and I just want to soak it all in. Just learn from everyone, and try to come in and just do my job.”

The Ravens will have a competitive training camp if teams are allowed to move forward with practices amid the COVID-19 pandemic. The team is excited to see what Dobbins can bring to the roster.  He has the pedigree and the intangibles to make an immediate impact. 

“He’s a very talented guy with electric skills and played at a very high level in a really good conference [on] one of the best teams in college football, so we’re excited to get him,” DeCosta said. “He fits us, and I think he’s going to be a guy that is going to be a dangerous player for us and give us the depth to do what we like to do.” 

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Todd Karpovich

About Todd Karpovich

Todd Karpovich has been a contributor for ESPN, the Associated Press, SportsXchange, the Baltimore Sun, among other media outlets nationwide. He is the co-author of “If These Walls Could Talk: Stories from the Baltimore Ravens Sideline, Locker Room, and Press Box,” “Skipper Supreme: Buck Showalter and the Baltimore Orioles,” and the author of “Manchester United (Europe's Best Soccer Clubs).” Karpovich lives in Towson with his wife, Jill, daughters, Wyeth and Marta, and a pair of dogs, Sarah and Rory. More from Todd Karpovich

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