Saturday, January 22, 2011

Cameron "under fire" could come back to burn Ravens


I found Steve Bisciotti’s choice of words and rationale for retaining Cam Cameron to be quite revealing.

“And John [Harbaugh’s] feeling is that we like Cam under fire as our offensive coordinator next year.”

Under fire…

Don’t think that for a second the player’s didn’t take note of that and knowing that doesn’t it weaken Cameron’s grip on the offense particularly if it goes awry early on during the season?

Here’s something else to think about regarding Cameron next year. During his three seasons as a pro Flacco has been tied at the hip to Cameron. Next season will be their fourth together. If they struggle on offense again, surely Cameron will be gone and another coordinator will be brought in.

The first year of that coordinator’s tenure will be the last year of Flacco’s rookie five year deal. That could make it difficult to assess Flacco’s value going forward, particularly if there’s the expected adjustment period to a new offensive system. Of course the Ravens could control Flacco in year six as a restricted free agent but then again, teams don’t generally handle their franchise quarterback in that fashion.

Perhaps the Ravens should have thought about that before they gave Cameron a mulligan.

They might need another a year from now.

4 comments :

Anonymous said...

I agree this was a very tough call, and your scenarios could come home to roost.

The most pressing scenario now though is the lockout, and the learning curve for a new OC now, without a normal off/preseason. I think the risk there is driving this, and more imminent than your scenarios.

What would they have done without the lockout looming? We'll never know....

Ben said...

Tony,

This is what I fail to understand:

If you're giving an ultimatum that this guy is going to be gone if things don't change, and you take away his control and give some to the head coach, then why keep this guy in the first place?

Honestly we're wasting another year with Cam and I doubt many of the players will want to come back next year, knowing the way this movie ends. Moreover how hard do you think the personalities on this team like Boldin, T.J (if hes back), or Mase (if he's back) will be playing knowing the play is flawed?

The ravens will be lucky to go 4-12 next season and we'll essentially be in the same place we were in in 05, or 07 where the D gave up because of the Offensive failings.

But my guess is Steve would have figured that out if he spent more than 30 minutes on it ;)

Tony Lombardi said...

Ben,

I agree with most of your points. Funny you should mention movies. I told some friends as the Ravens were beginning to unravel last Saturday that it felt like Ground Hog Day watching them gift another game to the Steelers.

That said, I think it's a bigger stretch to see the Ravens finish 4-12 "if lucky" than it would be to see them finish with a mark similar to this season's.

Anonymous said...

I don't agree at all. I dont really care for Cameron because I dont like his system. But I expect the offense to improve next year. I think people forget a couple of things:

1) Coupled with the 3 OL playing out of position the Ravens had 4 new receivers and 2 new TE's. Infact the only "receivers" that were not new to the Ravens were Heap, Mason, and Rice. Thats alot of turnover on one side of the ball.

The last time one side of the ball had that much turnover in Baltimore was the house cleaning on defense that came in 2002. That year the defense finished 22nd overall. Mike Nolan was the D coordinator and the high profile players hated him to. Guess what he got it turned around the very next year.

2) The Ravens bread and butter was the run game. The run game was ineffective. How much of that REALLY falls on Cam? He didnt run the ball any less than last season. And the previous two years under him the run game ranked in the top 5, so we know he knows how to put together a solid rush attack. Something else is wrong here.

Frankly, I am already sick of the attitudes from Mason, Boldin, and Houshmanzadah. And I think they, more than anything else, are what is holding Flacco back right now. The attitude and constant whining from those 3 is to much for a young QB to deal with.

The Ravens made a mistake bringing in Boldin and Houshmanzadah and bring back Mason. They sold out for a Superbowl and didnt get it. If your going to rebuild a position the way they did, they should have gone younger and got guys that can grow with Flacco. Not sign a bunch of old band aids with no speed. Hindsight is 20/20 but instead of blowing that 2nd round pick on Kindle prehaps they should have blown it on Mike Williams, Golden Tate or Benn. Tate and Benn might not have been all that effective but like David Reed there is future potential in them. 5 years from now they could have been forming a formidable duo with Flacco. Will Boldin, Mason, and TJ, even be in the NFL in 5 years?