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Ravens News 2/7: Golden Age and more

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NFL: Cleveland Browns at Baltimore Ravens Mitchell Layton-USA TODAY Sports

Ravens’ quest for an offensive coordinator continues - Jeff Zrebiec

Harbaugh has had six offensive coordinators in his 15 seasons, and every one of them has had NFL play-calling experience. Five of them actually had NFL head-coaching experience, too. That trend would seemingly bode well for Monken and Outten, neither of whom has a ton of NFL play-calling experience but they do have some. Harbaugh, though, proved last offseason in his hiring of defensive coordinator Mike Macdonald that he wasn’t married to that concept. Macdonald had never called a defense at the NFL level.

The Eagles’ Johnson, 35, is a hot name on the coaching circuit due to his work with Jalen Hurts. However, if Eagles offensive coordinator Shane Steichen gets the Indianapolis Colts’ head-coaching job — he reportedly interviewed for it a second time over the weekend — it stands to reason that Philadelphia could promote Johnson into his spot. Therefore, he might not even be available.

San Francisco 49ers pass game coordinator Bobby Slowik has been connected to the Ravens’ opening and Baltimore did speak to him, but the belief is he’s intent on either staying on Kyle Shanahan’s staff or following DeMeco Ryans to Houston.

Best Moments and Takeaways From ‘Bullies of Baltimore’ 30-for-30 - Ryan Mink

Brian Billick was the perfect match for this team.

There was plenty of swagger on the 2000 Ravens defense. Sharpe was the offensive ringleader in that regard. The team’s head coach had plenty of his own too, and he allowed their big personalities to shine.

Lewis said the Ravens players used to call Billick “Birdman” because he would walk around with his chest out.

“He talked just as much as us if not more,” Sharpe said.

There was never-seen-before footage from inside the locker room after the playoff win in Tennessee. Billick was riled up by the Titans playing a video on their stadium boards before the game, showing him telling his team that the Titans were maybe the best team in the league “but not today” after the Ravens’ regular-season win.”

After Baltimore won in their stadium again, Billick ordered all cameras in the post-game locker room to be turned off. One was lowered so nothing could be seen, but the audio was still running.

“F--- THE TITANS!” Billick yelled, sending the room into an eruption of cheers.

Billick’s confidence and bravado rubbed off on his team.

Twelve Ravens Thoughts on “Bullies of Baltimore” documentary - Luke Jones

The Super Bowl XXXV run meant something different for every generation, but the common thread was the feeling that the Ravens — and the city itself — weren’t supposed to be there. That’s why the team’s brash personality was such a perfect fit. It truly felt like Baltimore against the world.

I’ll always maintain the Ravens-Titans rivalry was “Ravens-Steelers” before Ravens-Steelers, which is why it was such a bummer that divisional realignment split up the old AFC Central foes in 2002. The hatred was legitimate, and their divisional round clash was the real Super Bowl that year.

My one criticism of the documentary was lacking mention of the significance of the Week 2 win over Jacksonville, who owned an 8-0 record against the Ravens prior to that 39-36 thriller. That game may not have fit the overall theme of dominant defense, but its importance cannot be overlooked.

Between Sunday’s special and Friday’s 10th anniversary of Super Bowl XLVII, the weekend highlighted 2000 through 2012 being the Ravens’ golden age with nine postseason berths, 14 playoff wins, four AFC title game appearances, and two Super Bowl championships. Not bad for a city that wasn’t supposed to be there.

2023 NFL Draft: Keion White, Darius Rush impress at Senior Bowl and other prospects with rising stock - Josh Edwards

Maryland cornerback Deonte Banks

Banks is a long man coverage cornerback with the speed necessary to carry routes vertically. He is a smooth player capable of carrying routes across the field. However, he has limited ball production during his career with the Terrapins stemming from his tendency to not get his eyes back to the ball. While missed tackles are an issue for many cornerbacks in this class, the same is not true of Banks, who had one missed tackle all of 2022, according to TruMedia. As teams look for man coverage cornerbacks, Banks’ positioning among the top group makes sense considering his size and athletic ability.

Georgia Tech edge rusher Keion White

White is an intriguing prospect because he runs well at 6-foot-4, nearly 290 pounds. A one-time tight end at Old Dominion, White has long arms and some pop in his hands, but was getting washed out of his run gaps in early season film study. The senior is explosive off the snap and has the pass rushing potential necessary to go in the early rounds if his run defense improved as other media reports suggest. He had just 11.5 sacks during his Georgia Tech career with 7.5 coming this season.

Senior Bowl 2023 Offensive Standouts To Note - Ryan Fowler

Eric Gray

RB, Oklahoma

There’s a reason why Gray was so highly touted as a prep athlete, and while the college production was never really there during his years at Tennessee and Oklahoma, I loved what I saw from him this week. He runs hard, has excellent feet, is able to work with accelerated vision, and has good hands in space. He has one of the strongest lower halves of any player in the class and will be an excellent complementary talent for whoever takes him on draft weekend.

John Michael Schmitz

IOL, Minnesota

Like it was on tape, there wasn’t a single guy that could move the aptly nicknamed ‘JMS’ off his spot. He won’t draw any comparisons to Ravens center Tyler Linderbaum athletically, but he’s strong as an ox and was a leader on the field throughout the event. He’ll be a foundational addition to any front-five he joins.