Following an amazing 2019 season, and an offseason where they got even better, the Ravens were expected to be serious Super Bowl contenders in 2020. However, they’ve not lived up to those expectations through 10 games. Here’s a look at the good, bad and ugly for the Ravens in 2020.
From a diehard fan’s perspective, this season has been super underwhelming. However, it hasn’t been completely horrible. Rookie productivity has been a pleasant surprise so far. First rounder Patrick Queen has emerged as a DROTY candidate. He is already developing into another defensive stud for Baltimore. Alongside him, fellow rookie linebacker Malik Harrsion has also had a solid rookie year, getting better and better each week.
RB JK Dobbins has become the team’s featured back over fellow RBs Gus Edwards and Mark Ingram. Wide receivers Devin Duvernay and James Proche have rejuvenated the team’s kick and punt return units. They’ve also both made some splash plays on offense in limited snaps. We’ve seen lots of production from the rookies which is inspiring for the team’s future.
The Ravens offense has taken a noticeable step back from last season. It starts with the offensive line, which looks much different than the unit that dominated last year. For one, future hall of famer Marshal Yanda retired, creating a big hole at right guard. All Pro LT Ronnie Stanley suffered a major leg injury which ended his season. Rookie RG Tyre Phillips also suffered from a minor, but lingering injury which kept him out for a few weeks. These 3 big losses on the offensive line have affected the Ravens offense is a big way.
Consistency has also been a major issue for the team. Some games, they look like Super Bowl contenders, but in others, they don’t even look like a playoff team. The Ravens have a super talented team, but they can’t put together a full 60 minutes worth of great football. In all four losses, the Ravens beat themselves with ugly mistakes and sloppy penalties. If Baltimore can start to play consistently, they could actually be a dangerous squad.
The injury bug has hit the Ravens hard in 2020. Stars Ronnie Stanley, Nick Boyle and Tavon Young all suffered season- ending injuries. Calais Campbell, Brandon Williams and Mark Ingram are just a few other important pieces who missed time due to injuries.
COVID-19 has been the biggest headline in 2020, infecting millions worldwide. Just this week, a huge outbreak within the organization is being reported. Several players, staff members and coaches tested positive for the virus. It got so bad that their Thanksgiving battle with the Steelers was pushed back to Sunday afternoon.
The AFC playoff race is extremely tight, and currently, the Ravens are on the outside looking in. With Pittsburgh sitting at a perfect 10-0, winning the AFC North is pretty much out of reach. They’ll be fighting with the Browns, Colts, Dolphins and Raiders for the final three AFC Wildcard spots. Coming up after the Steelers, the Ravens will face Dallas (3-7), Cleveland (7-3), Jacksonville (1-9), New York (3-7) and Cincinnati (2-7-1). Baltimore must have a strong final stretch if they want to make it into the playoffs.
While this season has been frustrating, the players and coaches can’t give up. The Ravens are one of the most talented teams in the NFL and can make a strong playoff run if they can play at their full potential. With all the adversity this team has faced, it’s easy for them to hang their heads, but the season is far from over. The Ravens must find their identity, perform well and just play Ravens football.
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