The Baltimore Ravens have done an excellent job to build up their roster in recent years, and they could be primed for future domination as a result of this.
Recently, ESPN revealed their futures power rankings for teams across the league rating how every side has boosted themselves up for the future in the next 3 years. The Ravens got the highest score in term of preparedness. A 100 rating is an A+ and elite, while a 90 is an A and rated to be great. Baltimore places just below that with an 89.4 overall rating.
Here is the explanation as to why in the piece, courtesy of contributor Field Yates:
“Lamar Jackson didn’t need long to put himself in the conversation for the most dynamic player ever, as he became the league’s second unanimous MVP pick in just his first season as a starter. But GM Eric Decosta has also built up a defense ready to hold up its end of the bargain going forward, led by a particularly fearsome secondary.”
As for some of the potential worries, health for Jackson was said to be the biggest concern, while getting him a new weapon at wideout and some pass rush help are goals for the future in terms of personnel.
On defense and offense, the Ravens are stacked and look like the team to beat for a long time in the NFL. All of this likely doesn’t come as a surprise to ESPN considering they are at the top of the heap in the ratings.
Colin Cowherd: Ravens Have NFL’s Best Roster
The Ravens are getting a little love for their work building the team in recent years on multiple fronts. General manager Eric DeCosta got some major respect from Fox Sports analyst Colin Cowherd. According to Cowherd, the Ravens have the best roster in the NFL at this point in time. Here’s a look at that, and the other teams who place on the list just behind Baltimore.
— Herd w/Colin Cowherd (@TheHerd) March 30, 2020
Perhaps the biggest reason the Ravens are in such good shape is their quarterback Lamar Jackson. Offensively, the team also has some quality pieces such as Marquise Brown and Mark Andrews, and the defense has been beefed up with players who are both young and old this offseason.
This version of the Ravens will have to overcome some disappointment in the playoffs in order to take this throne, but clearly, the talent is there. The most fascinating part will be watching to see if the team can put everything together in the next few years and prove the analysts right.
Ravens Credited For Defensive Building
The Ravens have been keeping things together on the back end of their defense, and that’s good news as it relates to how the team is being built for their future according to some pundits. This could be a big reason the team rates so high.
Pro Football Focus contributor Gordon McGuinness recently tweeted about the approach the Ravens have with Eric DeCosta building his team, and lauded the fact that Baltimore seems to be building around players who are solid and stout on the back end and know the team’s scheme incredibly well. As he says, that’s how a defense should be constructed.
The Ravens are returning:
3 of the 45 highest-graded CBs from 2019 in Marlon Humphrey, Marcus Peters and Jimmy Smith
2 of the top 35 highest-graded safeties in Earl Thomas and Chuck Clark
And get Tavon Young back in 2020
Build your defense from back to front pic.twitter.com/Pcxgpehi0X
— Gordon McGuinness (@PFF_Gordon) March 23, 2020
The Ravens recently re-signed Jimmy Smith, which was a huge move in order to keep a group together which has been very solid. That’s in addition to what they already have on the roster and what they will get back in 2020.
This shows that the Ravens might have the right plan as it relates to keeping their roster in shape.
Ravens Young Roster Seeing Bright Future
Even in spite of some playoff shortcomings lately, the Ravens are still set up well to perform next season and beyond. A great tweet from Kevin Oestreicher shows that the reason for that has everything to do with age.
The core of Baltimore’s roster remains intact, and will be in their prime for a long time considering everyone’s age and futures.
Age for some key players on the Ravens:
Marquise Brown: 22
Lamar Jackson: 23
Marlon Humphrey: 23
Orlando Brown Jr: 23
Mark Andrews: 24
Chuck Clark: 24
Gus Edwards: 24
Ronnie Stanley: 25
Marcus Peters: 27
The future is bright in Baltimore😈
— Kevin Oestreicher (@koestreicher34) January 13, 2020
With this considered, it doesn’t seem wise to think that the Ravens are going to go anywhere as a team that’s a league force. They’ve got a bevy of skill position players and guys at key spots who are young and ready to take the next steps in their career.
In fact, this season’s 14-2 record might only be looked at as the beginning when all is said and done with this in mind. It could be a big reason the team has build one of the best teams in the NFL that figures to last.
ESPN agrees with the team having the best roster in the league for the foreseeable future.