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Dobbins Disrespected Shawn Hubbard/Baltimore Ravens

Street Talk Dobbins Disrespected

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J.K. Dobbins knows he was disrespected. 

That only adds more fuel to his fire. 

Dobbins was recently ranked as the 26th best running back hearing into the 2021 season by Pro Football Focus.

That’s sort of nonsense, considering how he performed as a rookie.

He led all of the Ravens’ running backs with 805 yards on 134 carries with nine touchdowns.

Dobbins also recorded a rushing score in seven consecutive games, including the wild-card playoff game against Tennessee, which tied for the second-longest streak by a rookie in NFL history.

Dobbins offered his response to that ranking on social media.

The second-year player from Ohio State is poised to have another huge season and will likely carry the load at running back with Gus Edwards also getting a significant number of carries.

Dobbins added more muscle this offseason and showed off his increased speed at the Ravens offseason workouts.

He’s embracing the lofty expectations surrounding him this season. 

“Put it on me,” Dobbins said. “Let’s go. That’s how I see it. That’s how I see this offseason. That’s how I’m attacking it. I can’t slack off. I can’t slack off at all. I’m working hard. My coaches and my teammates are putting trust in me, so I can’t let them down.”espite the lower ranking by Pro Football Focus, other pundits see Dobbins’ potential to be a breakout player this season. Marc Sessler, of the NFL Network, believes that Dobbins could emerge as a Pro-Bowl-caliber player. 

“It’s all about how Dobbins closed his rookie adventure. After receiving just 25 totes in September and October, the former Ohio State star put up 651 of his 805 yards down the stretch while finishing with the league’s highest yards-per-carry mark (6.0) among qualified running backs,” Sessler writes. “An ideal fit in Baltimore’s RPO rushing express, Dobbins offers elite vision, powerful, knifing legs that can turn on the jets and college proof as a receiver. He’ll grow in that pass-catching role come autumn and deserves mention as a dark-horse candidate to lead the NFL in touchdowns.”

The Ravens are determined to fix a passing offense that ranked last in the NFL last season. However, they have had the league’s top-ranked rushing attack for the past two years, which has translated into playoff berths. In the 20-13 victory over the Tennessee Titans in the AFC wild-card game, the Ravens ran for 233 yards on 35 carries.

So, even though the team added several new wide receivers to support quarterback Lamar Jackson, don’t expect the Ravens to abandon the running game, especially if they are winning games and controlling the clock. 

“I think one of the things, as you think about the passing game, is we throw the ball a lot less than a lot of other teams do,” Ravens general manager Eric DeCosta said. “That’s by design; we’re a running football team. People like to look at yards per game as a good metric of a passing game, and I think we threw the ball probably 150-160 times less than any other team did this year in the NFL. We are a running team.”

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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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