The Baltimore Ravens lack of commitment to the running game is costing them wins.
It does not matter who the Baltimore Ravens have at offensive coordinator. Neither seems to know the advantages of running the football.
Marc Trestman was fired earlier in the season because he would not commit to the running game. Things have not changed under Marty Mornhinweg and it is costing the Ravens in just about every game.
Ravens fans were warned that Trestman and Mornhinweg ran similar offenses. Both coordinators historically like to air it out and we have seen that throughout the season. The problem is it is not working for the Ravens.
Terrance West and Kenneth Dixon each had a strong first half against the Dallas Cowboys. On the Ravens second possession of the game, they went 90 yards for a touchdown and 58 of those came on the ground. West capped the drive off with an 18-yard run into the end zone and it looked like the Ravens ground attack would be the ones who were eating.
When you celebrate WAY TOO SOON: Ravens Terrance West stole Ezekiel Elliott and Dez Bryant's celebrations. pic.twitter.com/wDh1YOdz5L
— Dallas Cowboys news (@dmn_cowboys) November 20, 2016
Obviously, the Cowboys got the last laugh in the 27-17 win, but it’s because West and Dixon were not featured more in the second half. It is mind boggling that the two running backs were averaging over 5 yards per carry only touched the ball twice in the second half. What’s worse, one of those carries was negated by a bonehead penalty by center Jeremy Zuttah.
A year removed from ACL surgery, Joe Flacco is on pace to shatter his previous marks in attempts and passing yards. And while he is being paid to be an “elite” quarterback, he is not. He needs a strong running game to excel.
Head Coach John Harbaugh is not going to fire another offensive coordinator so that is out of the question. However, if something does not change on offense in the next six games, it could be his job on the line.
What makes this all seem surreal is that after all the problems Baltimore has had this season, they are still in first place in the AFC North. However, the Pittsburgh Steelers are nipping on their heels and have a running back they can count on in Le’Veon Bell. The Ravens also have the more difficult schedule down the stretch.
This is the time of year that the running game and defense travel well. The Ravens have a defense that is capable of winning games, but unless Mornhinweg commits to the run more in the upcoming weeks, any playoff hope will be out the window.