It's official; John Harbaugh had his worst year as a head coach. Not only was his in game coaching horrible, but his clown show press conferences were like listening to the teacher from Charlie Brown.
Tuesday's press conference was his 2016 circus final act. Boy, was it one bizarre finale. Harbaugh made the utterly clueless decision of bringing back Marty Mornhinweg and Dean Pees. Electing to stay at the status quo and not change a thing. Keeping the guy who called, as Harbaugh himself put it, "the worst play-call ever." He's going to keep that guy and keep the man who has been the sad face of failure for this franchise in Baltimore over his five year tenure, Dean Pees. On a side note, I would love to be Pees. Imagine failing at your job for five years, but because your bosses think so highly of you, they still keep you around while you get paid a lot of money from their pockets. I'm jealous of Pees. He's safe no matter what happens. For all we know, he's slated to become the teams next head coach.
There was one thing that Harbaugh said that really made no sense. It was once again proof that Harbaugh really doesn't know what he really has at this position and refuses to take responsibility for this failure when it comes to the offense. When it came to the running back position, Harbaugh said:
"We need another back. What type of back that is? I think we're talking about it. We have a pretty good idea of the type of back we want to add. That could be a guy here. It could be 'Buck' (Javorius) Allen, who played well early in the season, and him taking the next step as far as developing himself. You didn't see it, but he practiced well in the last half of the season. Those two guys (West and Dixon) and another one is what we need."
Typing and reading that made my head hurt. Is he serious? The Ravens have needs this offseason. Pass rusher, cornerback, wide receiver, offensive coordinator and defensive coordinator. The last two aren't happening sadly, but the least of the Ravens concerns is the running back position. Terrance West and Kenneth Dixon made one darn good one-two punch out of the backfield. Here's the problem, they were good, when they were given the football. Unfortunately, that didn't really happen much this season. When West and Dixon were given the football they helped give the Ravens balance. They did open up the passing game for quarterback Joe Flacco. It just didn't happen as much as it should've. They gave the Ravens, get this, an identity. That's on Harbaugh and the offensive coordinator he is now bringing back for not figuring that out.
Now to be fair, Harbaugh gave West and Dixon much deserved props. As he should. Harbaugh said that they "proved themselves" and "made a name for themselves." If they did, then why is he talking about getting another running back? What type of running back could they possibly be looking for? Dixon is the most complete back on the roster and has the potential to be a star in this league. Which brings me to Buck Allen.
I like Allen, I think he did a lot of good things in 2015. That being said, did Harbaugh really say that Allen "played well" early in the season? Okay coach, Let's take a look. Allen only played in 8 games this year. That means he was inactive for 8 games, including the last 5 games of the 2016 season. Early in the season at running back, he only got meaningful snaps against the Washington Redskins and Oakland Raiders. How did he do? 3 carries for 13 yards against Washington and 4 carries for 18 yards against Oakland. He added two more carries against the Cleveland Browns on a Thursday night in Baltimore when the game was out of reach. In total, Allen's 2016 season consisted of 9 rushes for 34 yards. If Allen practiced well throughout the last half of the year, then why was he inactive for the last five games? Why didn't you use him?
While you need three running backs on the roster, you really only need two come game time. West and Dixon already provide the type of backs and style this team is looking for. There both tough backs that compliment each other so well and its a shame that they were never used to their full potential in 2016 because of the coaches outright refusal to give them the ball. Yet, here is Harbaugh pretty much telling these two players, "Yeah, you guys are good, just not what I'm looking for." Really? It's such a slap in the face to both West and Dixon because they showed so much this season. Especially Dixon, he really should be the starting running back next season and be given the majority of the carries. The guy is tough to bring down and just keeps moving. Also, he's a playmaker. This team needs playmakers. The coaches need to use him and West a lot next season.
Well, if they choose to that is.