The Greg Roman problem, the Ravens waited too long to replace him, now their hands are tied
It is no secret that the Baltimore Ravens offense is struggling, they managed just three points against the Cleveland Browns. Yes, Lamar Jackson is hurt but even before that the once high flying offense has now become just plain bad. Tyler Huntley is a very capable backup quarterback and has shown in the past that he can move the offense. The Ravens have not scored over 30 points in a game since week three against the New England Patriots.
Offensive coordinator Greg Roman has clearly had issues forming any sort of passing offense the past couple of seasons. A few factors can be attributed to the Ravens struggling offense, bad turnovers, pure execution, and lack of a fully healthy offense to just name a few.
The Ravens offense has also struggled with simple things like clock management and getting to the line before the play clock expires. There is also a lack of audibles being called, which is obvious because the Ravens are barely able to get set up in time. The Ravens have also struggled mightily in the Red-Zone which has lead to a lack of points.
Greg Roman has been the Ravens offensive coordinator since 2019, neither Jackson or Huntley are rookies learning an offense. Roman’s offense has been established for multiple seasons, instead of getting more complex it is getting figured out. It is clear that Roman’s offense does not have audibles in it, there is almost no adjustments at the line of scrimmage. With no adjustments at the line of scrimmage that means it is a lot harder to beat or trick a defense. Opposing defenses have effectively figured out what the Ravens are doing and can predict the play calls.
What the Ravens are running in my opinion is a more complicated “Wild Cat” offense, with a lack of creativity and pure execution. The read-option offense is more of a college football system, not an NFL system. It is a run heavy system with pulling blockers.
Roman is a great coordinator when it comes to designing running plays, but in 2022 offenses need to be more complicated than that. Roman’s offense may be good for a season or two in the NFL but it is not hard to recognize the same plays over and over again.
Some may look at the wide receiver talent but in all honesty I do not think that is the biggest problem. Rashod Bateman being hurt does not help the Ravens but they can not even get a snap off sometimes before a delay of game.
Star tight end Mark Andrews has also been quiet almost all season because he is getting doubled covered and defenses have effectively taken him out of the game. Andrews not getting the ball is clearly a coordinator and play design problem. Teams try to take Travis Kelci away for the Kansas City Chiefs, and they still find ways to get him the ball. The Ravens are also deep with talented tight ends and talented running backs. The offensive line for the Ravens is also a strong unit. That said the overall offense should be able to compensate for one bad unit.
The passing game more lacks from poor play design, lack of easy completions, and some miscommunications.
The difficulty for the Ravens is that Roman’s offense is unique and it is so late in the season that it is hard to replace him and put an entirely new offense in place, which is what the Ravens need to do. It takes most quarterbacks and teams a solid year if not more to fully learn and master an offense. Jackson and the quarterbacks on the roster are all similar athletic quarterbacks that fit in Roman’s system. I think Ravens head coach John Harbaugh knows it is just too late to make a change at this point in the season.
One excuse that Roman may have is that the Ravens have not had their best players healthy at the same time. JK Dobbins, Gus Edwards, Lamar Jackson and Rashod Bateman have all missed extended periods of time. This is the NFL however and injuries do happen, coaches need to make adjustments to compensate. Maybe Roman can get the offense back on track when Jackson comes back and gets to play with Dobbins and Edwards but I am not confident in it.
At the end of the day, a lot of the Ravens offensive problems are Roman’s fault. Roman should have been replaced last off season and now the Ravens hands are tied because they can not easily replace him unless they replaced him and had someone else run his system.