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Ravens Insider: NFLPA report card: Ravens rank 15th overall, improve grade for strength coaches


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INDIANAPOLIS — A year after the Ravens’ strength coaches got a failing grade and were ranked the worst in the NFL, according to an NFL Players Association survey, they made improvements, according to this year’s survey results.

Still, there are concerns over the team’s training room. Baltimore’s strength coaches received a grade of B and ranked 23rd in the league; the weight room a B-minus and 21st; the training staff a B-minus and 22nd; and training room a C-plus and 21st.

“The biggest issue raised by player respondents this year centers around quality of care in the training room,” the NFLPA said in the survey, which was conducted among 1,706 players across the league. “Players feel that they don’t have enough access to one-on-one treatment time to prepare and recover. There is a consistent request for more physical therapists, more modalities and better-quality equipment.”

Only 79% of players feel the Ravens have enough full-time trainers (28th overall), 74% feel they have enough full-time physical therapists (25th overall), 80% feel they have enough hot tub space (21st overall) and 76% feel they have enough cold tub space (26th overall).

Players want more staff and more resources in the training room, the report said, and a lack of training staff makes it more difficult to recover and be prepared to play well.

In 2023, the Ravens’ strength and conditioning staff got an F-minus in the anonymous survey, with Steve Saunders specifically cited as being “at the core of these issues.” The Ravens fired Saunders and promoted his assistant, Scott Elliott, before last year’s results being announced.

Last year, Baltimore ranked 17th overall out of 32 NFL teams, with a C or better in seven of eight categories. This season, the Ravens were only slightly better, ranking 15th overall with a B-minus or better in eight of 11 categories. Their lowest grade this year was a C-minus for team travel.

Veteran outside linebacker Kyle Van Noy, who joined the team in September, defended the Ravens’ travel situation on X, the website formerly known as Twitter, writing it’s “one of the best the league” and the grade “was the only head scratcher.”

In the survey, 88% of the players feel like they have a comfortable amount of personal space during flights, but they are one of just seven teams that require some of their players to have roommates the night before a game.

At the other end of the spectrum, owner Steve Bisciotti received an A and was ranked fourth among NFL owners.

“The players think very highly of club owner Steve Biscotti and believe he is very willing to make the necessary changes and investments in their facility,” the report stated, with Bisciotti receiving a rating of 9.6 out of10 from the players when considering his willingness to invest in the facilities.

This season, Bisciotti spent more money on offense than any team in the NFL, which included signing quarterback Lamar Jackson to a five-year, $260 million extension. M&T Bank Stadium is also undergoing a $430 million state-funded makeover with several upgrades throughout the 26-year-old venue.

Coach John Harbaugh, who is the NFL’s second-longest tenured coach behind only Pittsburgh Steelers coach Mike Tomlin, also rated well after guiding the Ravens to a league-best 13-4 record and their first AFC championship since the 2012 season.

The 61-year-old, who just completed his 16th season at the helm, got a grade of B-plus and ranked 20th. Seventy-nine percent of players feel he is efficient with their time (25th overall) and players said they feel he is somewhat willing to listen to the locker room (21st overall).

The Ravens’ treatment of families, meanwhile, got a B-minus, up from a C-plus a year ago. The food/cafeteria, on the other hand, dipped slightly with a C-plus mark after a B-minus in food service/nutrition last year and ranked 18th overall in food taste and food freshness.

The team’s nutritionist/dietician and the locker room both got B-minus grades, with 93% of players feeling like the locker room is big enough (12th overall) but only 66% feeling like they have enough room in their lockers (28th overall).

The team added couches and a TV to the middle of the locker room this season, providing players with an area to relax.

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