The Baltimore Ravens have been one of the best teams in football season. They have always been strong on special teams under head coach John Harbaugh, as well as on defense under Don “Wink” Martindale. But this year, the offense has taken a huge step forward, thanks to Greg Roman’s plus-one offense with quarterback Lamar Jackson playing at an NFL MVP level in it.
On this week’s episode of Stacking the Box, FanSided‘s Matt Verderame and Mark Carman, along with former NFL offensive lineman Geoff Schwartz, try to figure out if there is a way to slow down “Action Jackson” and this vaunted ground attack. Schwartz thinks it’s next to impossible to do so (2:05).
Yes, Schwartz has been a major critic of the Ravens’ viability long-term with this offense, but what Baltimore did on Monday Night Football to the Los Angeles Rams to break their soul, he is now finally convinced that this offense is here to stay with the 2019 Ravens. Schwartz would say that the reason it is so hard to prepare for the Ravens’ offense is the speed with which they play.
He would say that most NFL teams maybe practice at full-speed one day a week with that being on Thursday. Schwartz says that there are plenty of teams in the NFL that practice at half speed on Wednesdays. So how is that going to help you get ready from an offensive juggernaut with the dynamic playmaker that is Jackson running it?
If you were to slow down this Baltimore attack, you must win on first down. In doing so, you would force the Ravens into second-and-long situations, which would shrink the playbook down a bit and thus force Jackson to make more throws than the Ravens’ offensive gameplan would otherwise indicate.
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In short, you have to be dominant in the trenches if you only hope to contain Jackson and the Ravens offense. Sure, a team like the San Francisco 49ers might be able to do it on Sunday afternoon, but there are only a handful of teams that can compete with the Ravens in the trenches. You can’t really stop Jackson, you can only hope to contain him.
Here are a few other topics discussed on this week’s episode of Stacking the Box:
Schwartz: I was very wrong about the Ravens – 1:25
Verderame: Lamar might fail like RGIII or Kaepernick – 6:58
Gambling is going to put pressure on changing bad officiating – 15:06
Patriots offense will be why they don’t win a Super Bowl – 34:44
All this and more!