The Ravens 2020 NFL season may have been relatively disappointing, but early indications are that things could be much better next time around. This is because the Ravens’ 2021 draft was strong. With impressive additions in the wide receiver capacity, and a truly massive guard, it looks like coach John Harbaugh will be much better equipped for the next NFL campaign.
While the Ravens looked strong last time around, the team ultimately underperformed. Going behind the Pittsburgh Steelers in the AFC North would have been upsetting, and nearly being eclipsed by the Cleveland Browns was almost unthinkable just a couple of years previously.
But it was the demoralizing 17-3 defeat by Buffalo in the AFC divisional playoffs that was the most depressing aspect. Buffalo managed to pretty much shut down Lamar Jackson, and it has to be said that the star quarterback had a much flatter season compared to the previous year.
Where could the Ravens struggle?
Obviously, anything could still happen in this year’s NFL, and there’s no reason why the Ravens won’t underperform again. In fact, if you look at most sportsbooks featured at www.captaingambling.com/sports-betting/, you’ll see that the majority of these have Cleveland Browns to walk home with the AFC North title. With a team packed with talent, and a decent change in management style, it looks like quarterback Baker Mayfield might finally get the results to back up his ego.
Plus there are many who state that the Ravens are still looking a little lightweight in key areas of the team. The relatively feeble options in the tackle position are perhaps the most visible weaknesses, and it’s clear that there is plenty of distance to cover before the Ravens reach their full potential. But the 2021 draft was always meant to have been made with the long-term picture in mind. All of this means that this NFL season could be a decent first step on the return to form.
All of this is in the past, and with Harbaugh saying that Jackson responded positively to the draft picks, it’s hoped that the Raven can turn things around. Much of this has been put down to draft choices that look very versatile. While some people have stated that incoming linebacker Odafe Oweh lacks experience, there is no denying the fact that the rookie has the potential to disrupt even the most tightly organized offense. Plus with natural athleticism, Oweh could inspire some of the Ravens’ defensive veterans to raise their game.
The Ravens offensive line is looking much stronger this time around and big things are expected from the return of Ronnie Stanley. Similarly, it is hoped that Bradley Bozeman could be a superior choice for center and Kevin Zeitler should hopefully work wonders in the right guard position.
The running game of the Ravens could be set for big things with the likes of Gus Edwards and JK Dobbins making sure that Jackson doesn’t have to do everything himself. Mark Andrews is looking like he has solved the tight-end question at the Ravens, while Marquise Brown and Sammy Watkins remain quality passing options should Jackson decide to ever relieve himself of the football.
Hopes are high that newcomers Tylan Wallace and Rashod Bateman could seriously enhance the Ravens passing game. The addition of the rookies looks to be a shrewd move by Harbaugh and should be enough to improve on the surprisingly mediocre offense of last year.
Most football fans wouldn’t have had too much of a problem with the Ravens defense of 2020. After all, any time with the likes of Tyus Bowser and Pernell McPhee is going to take some beating. But now with the addition of Oweh and Daelin Hayes, it seems that the Ravens could have one of the best defenses in the NFL. All of which sets up the team for a fascinating season.