Now that the Baltimore Ravens have an offensive coordinator in Gary Kubiak, they really need to set their eyes on retaining worthwhile players who are set to hit free agency. Ozzie Newsome and John Harbaugh need to sit with Kubiak and figure out what kind of offense he has in mind and if the personnel currently in house fit the scheme he wants to run. I am sure they briefly discussed this in his interview for the job, but they now need to go into the depth chart position by position and consider each player’s value in the offense going forward. How will the review of each position affect the roster for 2014?
With the Houston Texans, Kubiak had the comfort of two bookend tackles in Duane Brown and Derrick Newton to protect his QB and run block for one of the best running backs in the game in Arian Foster. He will now work with Eugene Monroe and possibly Kelechi Osemele with the projected departure of Michael Oher. After looking at Kubiak’s style of run-blocking, I think he will bring in a mix of man and zone-blocking, but the zone blocking won’t be as drastic as the system Juan Castillo installed last season. Kubiak’s system is one of zones, but the areas of responsibility are not as distant and don’t require as much travel for the center.
In the passing game, what I love about Kubiak is he trusts his receivers to go out and make a play. Of course, that is easy when you have Andre Johnson at your “X” position. What I was impressed with is that DeAndre Hopkins had the same trust from his head coach and QB. Hopefully Kubiak will install his three-wide package and use Marlon Brown as his jump-ball guy.
Every position of the Houston offense has players that were gush-worthy because of the system that Kubiak ran. If it all translates over well for the Ravens, look for Joe Flacco to finally surpass the 4,000-yard mark on the season and look for the running game to improve significantly. Newsome and Harbaugh just might have gotten it right this time on offense. Now all they have to do is figure out who is going to fit best into their system and show Castillo the door, and the O will be one step closer to redeeming themselves for last year’s embarrassing season.