Brian Spurlock-US PRESSWIRE
The Baltimore Ravens made a statement to their fans by firing offensive coordinator Cam Cameron, but is that enough to change the current direction of the team?
It seems to me that the termination of OC Cam Cameron was a good move, just one about a year or so too late. Just about every Ravens fan out there has been clamoring for this to happen for along time, and I wouldn't be surprised to find out that QB Joe Flacco is not sorry to see him go either.
The word was that Flacco voiced his displeasure when QB Coach Jim Zorn was let go a couple of years ago, but Cam wanted more direct access to his QB. See what that did for both, folks? Cameron's issues in this writer's mind as well as most fans was that he was unable to adjust in-game, refused to give in to the obvious fact that the Ravens needed to be a run-first offense, and seemed to have limited confidence in Flacco in critical situations.
However, is this enough to light a spark under the offense, which rarely plays 60 minutes a game without going from good to horrible at some point, usually with the game on the line? Another train of thought could be that regardless of the plays called, if the players executed them successfully, then the OC would look like a genius.
Think it was Cameron who designed that 4th-and-29-yards play that beat the San Diego Chargers two weeks ago? Think it was Cam that had Joe run around like his hair was on fire late in yesterday's game instead of lifting his head long enough to see downfield for a possible play?
The players are usually the last ones to be held responsible, but what about not only them but the guy or guys above Cam? Both head coach John Harbaugh and GM Ozzie Newsome need to assume some portion of the responsibility for Cameron's lack of success.Each week, Harbaugh approves Cameron's game-plan and while he will not interrupt a play being called into the headset during the game, he certainly listens and has the ability to go to Cam during timeouts or at halftime, much less the week in between games to instill his own philosophy.
Obviously that is not being done because the consistency of issues rears its ugly head week-in and week-out with no changes in philosophy. Instead, if RB Ray Rice does not get the ball very much one week, he gets it a ton the next at the loss of balance in the offense. Fans, such as me, sit in the stands or on our sofas and call out the plays long before the ball is snapped.
If we see the predictability of the offense, then can you imagine the opponents? When Flacco comes to the line of scrimmage with no one in the backfield and the opponent, like the Washington Redskins did yesterday in overtime, puts seven or eight guys along the line, there has to be some sort of adjustment, from an audible, to a recognized hot read to even a timeout being called.
Instead, the "normal" result repeats itself like a nightmare that won't go away. The QB drops back, holds the ball too long, then cowers as he is stripped of the ball for a game-changing turnover. Is that Cam's fault too?
When the defense sees a new, unproved rookie QB being thrust into the game at such a critical juncture, do they do the obvious and blitz, blitz, blitz the guy to force him to beat you with quick decision-making, or do they rush only three, which never, ever works, give him time to throw the TD pass and look like an All-Pro? Was that Cam's call too?
It's obvious this team has a lot of issues. It's stars are aging on defense and the QB has had five years to prove he deserves to be considered elite, and that is perhaps the biggest joke of all. The GM is not immune as he has been coasting on that "Wizard" reputation for years,while the team's draft picks have fizzled more often than not for the past few years.
The owner needs to take a longlook at the future and decide if he is satisfied with being a playoff contender each year and ending the season in disappointment or trying to determine what drastic changes need to be made to give this team a shot at being a Super Bowl championship team. They definitely are not one right now and probably won't be with the current personnel on the field and sidelines.
The change at OC is a move in the right direction. However, there are other moves that will need to be made. This is just the tip of the iceberg.