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Stop Jumping Overboard, People!


dc.
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Is (was) this team perfect? Of course not.

 

But some need to take a step back and thank our lucky stars for what we have and what has been accomplished. And I don't mean this in the "settle for just being good" way, but I mean it in the stop acting like this is the end of the world.

 

Things for this team could have been much, much worse over the last three years. There are teams with just as much talent as the Ravens that have failed to win playoff games, failed to make it to the playoffs, in this stretch. There are teams that have expectations just as high as we've had that have failed to do much of anything. The Cowboys, Giants, Broncos, Chargers... think of the talent that hasn't had any success while the Ravens have gotten their fair share of luck.

 

I'm not trying to be sympathetic to the Pats - but the Pats were 14-2 and got their butts beat by a division rival at home. The Falcons were 13-3 and couldn't manage a playoff win. For the third straight year, the defending Super Bowl Champion did not win a single play-off game. And this time it came at the hands of a 7-9 NFC West team!

 

 

The Ravens have grown and improved greatly over the past few seasons. Maybe not by the leaps and bounds we'd like, but it's happened. And one more playoff loss is not going to end this world. In fact, 48 hours later and we're all still here, right?

 

 

My point? People want to talk about blowing this whole thing up. They want to criticize the likes of Harbaugh and Ozzie and Bisciotti. And yet, there is no guarantee of success in any way, shape or form. One magical switch at one position or one coaching vacancy does not a miracle make. If it was that easy, the Pats would have won yesterday. Drew Brees would have dominated in Seattle. But that's not how it happens. That's how a one-and-done playoff system works.

 

So before we talk about blowing it up - accept that this team has been damn lucky in many ways.

 

 

[This post is more directed at all the crap I see all over the internet, not just here. But I don't want to say it anywhere else]

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Well put. We are 1-2 plays from being in the AFCC Game. If Ray Rice doesnt fumble the other night, maybe the MO never changes and are we are playing this Sunday. If Flacco doesnt get popped by Polamalu last month, maybe we are hosting the AFCC game. Sometimes, its just 1 or 2 plays that changes the entire season. I believe the Steelers' James Harrison made such a claim the other night.

 

Maybe it wasn't our year to get that good fortune (like we did in 2000-2001) where you are a team of destiny. We werent this year.

 

Prior to the season, I was of the few that had us winning 9 to 11 (tops) games. Without good fortune against Buffalo, Houston and Cincy (last game), we could have EASILY gone 9-7 and missed the playoffs.

 

We have a good team with a young QB and strong nucleus of skilled players. Its a team with holes like all teams (Jets, Steelers, Packers) that needs to have an effective off season and a draft that is absolutely critical. I trust Ozzie will have a good draft for LT, C, CB, WR, DE or LB (not in that order). Perhaps the draft has never been more important for this organization.

 

Sure, I question the retainage of OC and DC but I'm just a fan who wants to see a winner. Well, we already have a winner and playoff team for the past 3 years, a stable organization and a promising future.

 

Given the landscape that is the NFL I'll take it !

 

:gorave:

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This was our 3rd straight year in the playoffs. We had a 3rd year QB who gained valuable playoff experience his first two years. Yes, the Ravens have grown by leaps and bounds the past few season, but this might have been the best shot we will have in a while.

 

I just don't understand that mentality.

 

Why?

 

Now we'll have a 4th year QB... not a 12th or 10th like the Pats and Colts...

 

Now we'll have a 4th year RB.

 

Our D is getting older in many ways, but the flaws weren't Ray or Ed... they were elsewhere.

 

And in a constantly shifting league, no reason we can't continue to shift too.

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I just don't understand that mentality.

 

Why?

 

Now we'll have a 4th year QB... not a 12th or 10th like the Pats and Colts...

 

Now we'll have a 4th year RB.

 

Our D is getting older in many ways, but the flaws weren't Ray or Ed... they were elsewhere.

 

And in a constantly shifting league, no reason we can't continue to shift too.

 

Because a third of our roster are unrestricted free agents. We aren't going to be able to tinker with the roster while maintaining our core like we have the past few years, we are in for a big overhaul which means uncertainty. Ed Reed and Ray are on the downside of their careers. Ray especially will be coming back for I think his 16th year. How long can he keep contributing? I think Ray's leadership and energy played a big part in buoying (sp) an average D this season. He can't keep that up forever. Even with his play against Pittsburgh, I am excited about the season Flacco had and i'm looking forward to him carrying us to a degree next year, but Flacco and Rice are only a small certainty amongst a lot of variables.

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But every team faces this to a varying degree every year. And, ultimately, would you rather be the Bengals or Browns - changing coaches, QBs, coordinators, and coming off horrible seasons - or a team with at least something to build on?

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Its nice to make the playoffs so consistently and to win some of them but Saturday was a bad loss. To be up like that and to lose is frustrating.

 

To see the team make the same mistakes they have all season is frustrating.

 

To see the offense sputter against a good defense again is frustrating. To see Joe struggle in the playoffs again is frustrating. (hes had one good game in 7 playoff appearances by my count) To see a receiver corp who a lot put at or near the top in the NFL underutilized so much is frustrating. To see a QB often (usually?) lock on to targets while missing others wide open, or dumping to the RB when a wide open target is further down the field is frustrating. To see the O-line be so inconsistent is frustrating.

 

To see the defense play so well then give up a huge play when it mattered most is frustrating.

 

Watching Koch and Cundiff has been rewarding.

 

Overall to me its been a frustrating year with the way they have lost games and even the way they have won some of them. Some will accuse me of expecting too much, I ofcourse disagree, but I expected this team to be better. Frankly with the way they played I am amazed they finished 12-4. And I see people point out that we were ahead in the fourth and lost some of those games and are encouraged by that, but being in the lead in the fourth and losing pleases me no more than losing the whole game.

 

And while I am in the minority in this, part of what bothers me is the continued lack of development of Flacco. He is still young and could improve but I have seen such little improvement from him that I do not really expect much at this point. As he is now I do not think he is anywhere good enough to be a franchise QB, at least a franchise whose goal is to win it all. So I am frustrated by what I see as the continued lack of a good QB for this franchise and the fact I dont feel we'll ever go any farther than we have this year with him at the helm barring the off chance the defense becomes so good that we do not have to rely on offense at all. And honestly in the next few years I think we will have to rely on our offense more and more.

 

So in a word I am just frustrated right now. I am sure I will feel better in the days and weeks to come, but I am not pleased by this loss or this years team in general.

 

I am merely stating the way I feel about things, I am not trying to sway others or argue anything in this thread. I am just explaining why I am not warm with "we had a good year" feelings right now.

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I am merely stating the way I feel about things, I am not trying to sway others or argue anything in this thread. I am just explaining why I am not warm with "we had a good year" feelings right now.

 

I actually agree with almost all of what you said, Spen. And disappointment and frustration are entirely what I am feeling and expect people to be feeling.

 

But there are people who are acting as if a playoff loss is the same as not making the playoffs. Or that this team is a failure for not winning a Super Bowl. And I understand that we had that as a goal, but 'failure' is not the right word.

 

We should have won on Saturday, especially given the 14 point lead. But the season doesn't fail because one half does. Neither does a coach or a franchise.

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I actually agree with almost all of what you said, Spen. And disappointment and frustration are entirely what I am feeling and expect people to be feeling.

 

But there are people who are acting as if a playoff loss is the same as not making the playoffs. Or that this team is a failure for not winning a Super Bowl. And I understand that we had that as a goal, but 'failure' is not the right word.

 

We should have won on Saturday, especially given the 14 point lead. But the season doesn't fail because one half does. Neither does a coach or a franchise.

 

Thats really the part the bothers me and still does. I didn't know what to expect in this game and was not exactly expecting a win. However with the way the first half went then the way the 2nd half went it stung.

 

Even if in the 3rd quarter we punt and the Steelers drive down the field and score instead of Rice fumbling when he did I would probably feel better. The three quick turnovers were hard to take. We did exactly what we couldnt do in that situation. Oh well.

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But every team faces this to a varying degree every year. And, ultimately, would you rather be the Bengals or Browns - changing coaches, QBs, coordinators, and coming off horrible seasons - or a team with at least something to build on?

 

No way. I'm not insane - just extremely disappointed. At the end of the day is 12-4 is a good record and only one team can win the SB, but we blew a really good opportunity and I don't think we're going to get another one this good in a while. I wouldn't mind being wrong!

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DC

 

I have to ask. Have you played football? If so was your team consistently competitive? If it is then I really don't think you would be coming from where you are. Just be happy with what you have people are Skins, Browns, Bengals (Sry Billy), and Bills. They are just pleased to have a team around. Teams that want to win and go for the ring do not take failure lightly. They may not succeed this yr but are looking to be getting back on the top of the pile the next yr.

 

The Steelers in 2007 went .500 the next yr they were holding the Lombardi Trophy. In 2003 they went 6-10. In 2004 they went 15-1 with Ben as a rookie. They got the ring in 2005.

 

In 2001 the Pats made the unbelievable run and got the championship. Bill knew he had to revamp to do it again so they went 9-7 the next yr. In 2003-4 they got it back to back. In the next 2 seasons they were good but didn't get there. In 2007 again with Moss they ran off 18 in a row before losing in the SB. It didn't work but he tried a new plan. After that year Bill saw that the D was old and needed youth so since 2007 he has beet retooling it with lots of picks by trading old players away. Their D starting next yr will be sick. They have a solid O and I see a run of titles coming their way.

 

Their is entirely to much status quo on the ravens. Lets do the same thing over and over and try to get different results. That is moronic.

 

Mason said this yr that he was only coming back to win a ring. Basically Ray said the same thing. I knew before they ever went to Westminster that their time and effort had been wasted. This team was not built to win a title. It is close but not quite good enough. Billick and Ozzie have wasted basically a whole decade of great defense.

 

Now it looks like Steve Bisciotti is going to give Harbs a new deal. I am not saying to fire him but I do think he needs to work on things. I do not like his review procedures. I do not like how his team regularly fall asleep during parts of games. I do not like how both of his coordinators seem to bash their heads into the wall trying to get their players to do things they can't do. I also do not like how he dumps guys in the doghouse for huge amounts of time even if they can be used to win games on Sundays. Harbs should come back but he needs to work within his original deal. Bisciotti gave Billick extensions haphazardly and it came back to bite him in the ass. I am wondering if the Ravens have a good owner or a flawed one.

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31 teams will fall short of hoisting the Lombardi this year.

Are they all failures with flawed ownership?

 

Should you blow up the Falcons because they can't win a playoff game?

Should Payton be fired because the 7-9 Seahawks took his Super Bowl team behind the woodshed and knocked them right out of the dance?

Shit...the Colts crashed big time. Fire Polian for not have a deep enough roster.

Another year and the Pats are 1 and done....two years in a row now... Get rid of Belichek...or Brady. They are flawed.

 

No...it's just a very short, hard, sudden end when you lose in the playoffs. It's what makes it special...and very special just to be there.

 

The Ravens and the Colts are the only teams to make the playoffs each year for the last 3 years. Bisciotti is doing something right.

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So you want to only use little segment of my argument to make a point. OK.

 

Well lets start by eliminating the teams that have no shot. They are the consistent failures that will do nothing for quite a while. Also how they are trending.

Skins Down

Bills Down

Browns Up

Raiders Up

Lions Up

Panthers Down

49ers Down

Cardinals Down

Seahawks the same

Bengals Down

 

Now the teams that are about to dig out of the hole and make the playoffs or just made it.

Dolphins Down

Texans Down

Jags Up

Titans Down

Chiefs Up

Broncos Down

Cowboys Down

Giants Down

Falcons Up

Bucs Up

Rams Up

 

Now the teams that are there but not quite great.

Ravens the same

Jets the same

Chargers Down

Eagles the same

Bears Up

Pack Up

 

Finally the teams that look to hoist the trophy every year.

Pats The same

Steelers The same

Saints Down

Colts Down

 

You need to always be getting better. If you are not you are falling back. I can eliminate at least half the league before the first game of the season every yr. Just because you are a little better than them so what. When the best teams have holes they look to plug them. They don't look to screw around with window dressing.

 

The Ravens have screwed around for years with cheap fixes and halfhearted tries. That kind of way of doing business has to end. If it doesn't Bmore can sit their being a bridesmaid forever. Last I knew this was pro ball and the goal was to win a championship.

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DC

 

I have to ask. Have you played football? If so was your team consistently competitive? If it is then I really don't think you would be coming from where you are. Just be happy with what you have people are Skins, Browns, Bengals (Sry Billy), and Bills. They are just pleased to have a team around. Teams that want to win and go for the ring do not take failure lightly. They may not succeed this yr but are looking to be getting back on the top of the pile the next yr.

 

The Steelers in 2007 went .500 the next yr they were holding the Lombardi Trophy. In 2003 they went 6-10. In 2004 they went 15-1 with Ben as a rookie. They got the ring in 2005.

 

In 2001 the Pats made the unbelievable run and got the championship. Bill knew he had to revamp to do it again so they went 9-7 the next yr. In 2003-4 they got it back to back. In the next 2 seasons they were good but didn't get there. In 2007 again with Moss they ran off 18 in a row before losing in the SB. It didn't work but he tried a new plan. After that year Bill saw that the D was old and needed youth so since 2007 he has beet retooling it with lots of picks by trading old players away. Their D starting next yr will be sick. They have a solid O and I see a run of titles coming their way.

 

Their is entirely to much status quo on the ravens. Lets do the same thing over and over and try to get different results. That is moronic.

 

Mason said this yr that he was only coming back to win a ring. Basically Ray said the same thing. I knew before they ever went to Westminster that their time and effort had been wasted. This team was not built to win a title. It is close but not quite good enough. Billick and Ozzie have wasted basically a whole decade of great defense.

 

Now it looks like Steve Bisciotti is going to give Harbs a new deal. I am not saying to fire him but I do think he needs to work on things. I do not like his review procedures. I do not like how his team regularly fall asleep during parts of games. I do not like how both of his coordinators seem to bash their heads into the wall trying to get their players to do things they can't do. I also do not like how he dumps guys in the doghouse for huge amounts of time even if they can be used to win games on Sundays. Harbs should come back but he needs to work within his original deal. Bisciotti gave Billick extensions haphazardly and it came back to bite him in the ass. I am wondering if the Ravens have a good owner or a flawed one

 

I don't understand your post.

 

In response to one part - no, I have never played football at any level. Maybe that makes me unqualified to have an opinion, fine. But I have it just the same.

 

I'm not sure if you were responding to my original post or my interaction with OTR.

 

If the former: I don't think I was arguing that I am 'okay' with not winning Super Bowls and just making the playoffs. But, and this was again pointed more at sources outside of this website, I think people are insane if they are calling for the head of Harbaugh or the blowing up of the team. I also think it is simply unfair to discount Harbaugh's successes in his first three years. We have no way of knowing what this team would be without him. I think he has plenty to work on, like you. But the 'anecdotal evidence' about making the playoffs and winning a game in them every year is valid and should be considered because so many other teams and coaches don't do that.

 

If the latter: I did not mean to advocate that we should just sit back and relax. Nor did I mean to say that we're in perfect position for next year. In fact, I was arguing the exact opposite. I just don't buy the "window" theory that is so frequently spoken of in sports. "The window is closing!" Sure, on this roster. That's what an off-season is for. Time to open a new window. Make the moves and make your team better.

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DC

 

I have to ask. Have you played football? If so was your team consistently competitive? If it is then I really don't think you would be coming from where you are. Just be happy with what you have people are Skins, Browns, Bengals (Sry Billy),

No offense taken, point understood.

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The team may not need to be blown up but It needs retooling. It needs youth. Some long standing guys need to be shown the door. During the time when they get young and that youth gets experience they may stumble. That is part of getting better.

 

This season our rookie TE's. They don't get to play until they are forced to. In NE they got thiers going early and and they played well. It reminds me of what this team did with Rabach and Brown. Never let them play and then find out to late that they are good. This team needs to start getting their young players worked in faster. That also gives you depth.

 

As for Harbs I said he should not be fired. I want more data on him. Maybe with the departure of Mattisson the D will get better. I am thinking he was the problem with Suggs the beginning of the season. All of the sudden Suggs, JJ, and Redding all got going about mid season. That is to much of a coincidence for me.

 

As for the window concept. It is real for the way many teams run their business. If you do what NE does and trade out older players for picks regularly then I do not see any reason you can't keep a run going indefinitely.

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Truthfully, among the top teams in the AFC and in the playoffs to this point, you could define outcomes in terms of a rather small number of key plays that separated winners and losers, seedings, etc. So in that regard Ravens' fans shouldn't be dissappointed because we were this year (and typically have been since 2000) a team capable of competing on level in the playoffs, when healthy. I think some of us (myself included) are feeling particularly distraught with recent years' performances in light of the aging of certain key players that express the "time is now or never (again)" mandate and the continual success of Pittsburgh, New England, Colts, etc. (now Jets) and many times at our expense. And then there's the "splinter in the mind" of something like, "hey, if we'd only beaten Cincy at home...", and "who the hell is responsible for that?!", well now everything is chaos, from losing coaches to veteran players equivocating to various columnists basically heading out for the sunset. I would like to think that a sensible GM or owner would recognize the basic talent that has really gotten this team through the last couple years, and not worry about the rest, but draft and sign around those core players. Anyone who has been paying attention knows who they are, health and ego concerns aside.

I'm all for a purge and timely rebirth.

p.s. that rebirth better include a huge emphasis on DBs and maybe a speedy WR

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As for the window concept. It is real for the way many teams run their business. If you do what NE does and trade out older players for picks regularly then I do not see any reason you can't keep a run going indefinitely.

 

That's my point. We need to retool. We need to make change. We need to put some finishing touches on the spots that are almost there.

 

But am I worried that we can't compete next year? That we blew it this year so we now have to 'wait our turn' again? No.

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