Greg Roman has stepped down from the offensive coordinator role with the Baltimore Ravens. After a successful first year in 2019 that saw Lamar Jackson win the MVP award, Roman’s offense has regressed greatly.
This year, fans had been calling for Roman’s head since the bye week. Many claimed that he was holding Jackson back. His lack of creativity in drawing up pass plays was a point of particular annoyance for fans. Despite the criticisms from fans, Roman should land on his feet. He is one of the most respected coordinators in the league and was the subject of substantial interest for Stanford’s head coaching gig. Whether it be in college or the NFL, Roman should have no trouble finding himself a job.
With Roman gone, the Ravens are now looking for a new offensive coordinator. Given the franchise’s history, one might say the likeliest move is to promote from within. However, if the team is looking to revolutionize its offense, it ought to look externally. Given how the offense looked last year, it seems to make the most sense to bring in an external offensive coordinator.
READ MORE: What’s Next For Lamar Jackson, Ravens?
Eight Offensive Coordinator Candidates For the Baltimore Ravens
James Urban is likely the favorite internal candidate to take on Baltimore’s offensive coordinator role. He is currently the team’s quarterbacks coach and has been in that role since 2018 and was a large part of Jackson’s MVP campaign. Given Jackson’s development with Urban, his appointment would make a lot of sense. As with all the internal hires, there are question marks surrounding whether they would implement an offensive scheme too similar to Roman’s, however.
Tee Martin currently serves as Baltimore’s wide receivers coach. He has been in that role since 2021 and has had a plethora of experience coaching at the college level. Martin has been highly praised in the organization and is a well-respected coach. However, some might question whether Martin has earned the right to become Baltimore’s offensive coordinator. He has done a solid job of developing the likes of Marquise Brown, Devin Duvernay, and Rashod Bateman but those players have also been under heavy criticism too.
Craig Ver Steeg
The most experienced coach of the internal candidates is Craig Ver Steeg. Ver Steeg is the running backs coach for the Ravens and has held various positions in the coaching staff since joining in 2008. Ver Steeg is a very respected member of the staff and would be the safest option on this list. However, the team might want a younger coach to bring a fresh perspective. That said, if the Ravens are unable to find a permanent solution this season, Ver Steeg or Urban would be favorites to be stop-gap offensive coordinators for a year.
Fans are not infatuated with Frank Reich currently. The former Indianapolis Colts HC was fired in the middle of the 2022 season after a long period on the hot seat. In truth, Reich did alright with five different starting quarterbacks. He was also a huge part of the Philadelphia Eagles in their 2018 Super Bowl campaign.
As it stands, Reich is drawing interest for head coaching positions. However, if he is unsuccessful, he would be a solid selection for the Ravens offensive coordinator job. He was an excellent tutor to Carson Wentz, and he could bring some of that magic to Baltimore. In particular, Reich is known for a focus on creative RPO plays, something that could be implemented easily with Jackson.
— Around The NFL (@AroundTheNFL) January 11, 2023
One issue with Reich is how things ended in Indianapolis. Could teams overlook the mess that was left there? Granted, many believe that he was not at fault. But it is also true that the Colts offense looked incredibly stagnant by the time he left.
Bobby Slowik is not a name that many NFL fans will know. He is currently the offensive pass game coordinator for the San Francisco 49ers. This year, Slowik has done a great job utilizing Deebo Samuel, Brandon Aiyuk, and George Kittle while also accommodating three different quarterbacks (all with different skillets). The 49ers’ usage of Samuel and Kittle is particularly interesting, as they could be a blueprint for how the Ravens use Duvernay and Mark Andrews (and Isaiah Likely).
— San Francisco 49ers (@49ers) January 9, 2023
At 35 years old, Slowik is very young. Is he too young to be a coordinator? Perhaps. However, that should not stop a team from appointing the best fit. Slowik would be an excellent appointment for the Ravens and is the perfect combination of scheme fit and progress.
The Buffalo Bills quarterbacks coach, Joe Brady, will undoubtedly be linked to many offensive coordinator vacancies this cycle. He has had a hand in the usage and development of Josh Allen this season. With the physical style that Allen adopts, the Bills playbook could certainly inspire some of Baltimore’s new offense.
However, there is also an argument to be made that a lot of Allen’s development came under Ken Dorsey and Brian Daboll. If this is so, Brady seems like a less attractive appointment.
Are the Ravens interested in trading for DeAndre Hopkins? If they are not yet, they will be soon. Hopkins reportedly wants out of the Arizona Cardinals and Baltimore would be an excellent landing spot for the star receiver. Should the Ravens want to acquire Hopkins, Shawn Jefferson would be a smart appointment.
Jefferson is currently the Cardinals’ receiver’s coach and associate head coach. Despite a turbulent season in Arizona, Jefferson has proved that he is a leader. He has been crucial in the developments of Christian Kirk, Rondale Moore, and Greg Dortch, to name just a few. He would also bring a new perspective to the passing game in Baltimore given how much 10-personnel the Cardinals run.
Brian Johnson is a hot name on the offensive coordinator market right now. Many believe that Johnson is the top candidate for many jobs, and rightly so. The Eagles quarterback coach has been pivotal in getting Jalen Hurts to MVP level. The creative run schemes (especially with the quarterback) that Philadelphia use would be extremely effective in Baltimore.
— Dianna Russini (@diannaESPN) January 18, 2023