Todd Monken has been hired as the new Baltimore Ravens offensive coordinator. He was previously the offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach of the Georgia Bulldogs, helping them win back-to-back championships.
Monken was one of the Ravens’ top candidates after a drawn-out process of finding their new offensive coordinator. In a bid to improve their offensive scheme, they have opted for an external hire. The 57-year-old also drew interest from the Tampa Bay Buccaneers for their offensive coordinator vacancy.
“We conducted 21 interviews with 14 candidates throughout a thorough process that had wide-ranging organizational involvement. Todd’s leadership and coaching acumen were evident from the beginning,” said John Harbaugh.
We have hired Todd Monken to be our Offensive Coordinator. pic.twitter.com/tTtMNMRCMd
— Baltimore Ravens (@Ravens) February 14, 2023
What Todd Monken Brings to Baltimore Ravens as OC
It is unclear how the Ravens offense will look exactly under Monken. However, discussions between Monken and Harbaugh are currently taking place with regards to whether the entire offensive staff will be overhauled. Should there be wide-scale changes, the Ravens offense could have a very different identity in 2023.
With an offensive coordinator hired, Baltimore’s appeal to Lamar Jackson reaches another high. It is believed that Jackson had significant input on how the offense should look next year. His advice was instrumental in guiding the team to appointing Monken. However, Jackson’s future with the Ravens remains murky. While he and the team are keen to remain together, both parties disagree with the finer terms (specifically, the amount of guaranteed money). It was recently revealed that, should the right offer come along, the Ravens could consider trading Jackson.
Monken’s Career to Date
Todd Monken is a 34-year coaching veteran who has spent eight seasons in the NFL. He was the offensive coordinator for the Cleveland Browns for one year and the Buccaneers for three years. His offensive coordinator tenures have been polarising at times but have equally presented a lot of positives. In 2019, Monken helped guide Baker Mayfield and Nick Chubb to career years. He was also decent with the Buccaneers, but Jameis Winston had turnover troubles.
It seems uncontroversial to assert that Monken’s most impressive work came with the Bulldogs. Hired in 2020, Monken led some very impressive units and got the most out of his players. Perhaps Stetson Bennett is the clearest example of this. A slightly undersized quarterback with an average arm and unspectacular athleticism, Monken was able to turn Bennett into a Heisman candidate this year. His impressive work with James Cook and Kenny McIntosh is also to be marvelled at. Current tight end Brock Bowers has also benefitted from Monken’s tutelage, with Bowers being the most recent recipient of the John Mackey Award.
When in doubt, throw it to Brock Bowers. pic.twitter.com/SbkuD8udFf
— CBS Sports (@CBSSports) October 29, 2022
Prior to his stints with Georgia, Cleveland and Tampa Bay, Monken was head coach of Southern Miss, where he finished with a 13-25 record. Between 2007 and 2010, he was the wide receivers coach for the Jacksonville Jaguars. He has primarily held offensive roles related to the passing game at college level.
Monken and Baltimore
Expect Monken to run a modernized offense. The expectation is that the team will not go away from the run. However, the passing game will be far more advanced than under Greg Roman. At Georgia, Monken made things easy for Bennett. He used read options, run-pass options and some one-read concepts. All of these will be important in helping Jackson gain momentum in the passing game. This was something that Baltimore struggled with last year.
Monken is also partial to the deep ball. The Ravens failed to incorporate this of late. Some have suggested this was because of Jackson’s limited arm, but this seems false when you look at the tape when Marquise Brown was around. The Ravens lack a real deep threat (and quality receivers generally). For Monken to succeed, the Ravens must reassess their current receiving corps and shore it up. The 2023 NFL Draft presents some intriguing prospects. However, the team could also do with some experience in the form of a receiver like Jakobi Meyers. Given the weakness of the free agency receiver class however, a trade could be likeliest. DeAndre Hopkins and Brandin Cooks are names that come to mind. He could be lured to Baltimore on the premise that Jackson sticks around.
Baltimore will also look to add some more receiving threat to their running backs. Jackson has been known to be reluctant to throw the ball to his running backs in the past. Part of this has been down to their personnel as neither J.K. Dobbins nor Gus Edwards are effective pass catchers. As such, should Monken implement his full playbook, Baltimore must look to grab a proper change-of-pace back or hope to develop Dobbins. Re-signing Justice Hill could also be a solution, but an upgrade may be preferred.
SEC Players this century with 800+ rushing yards, 500+ receiving yards, and 10+ TD’s in a season this century…
— Graham Coffey (@GrahamCoffeyDC) February 7, 2023
Main Photo: Joshua L. Jones – USA TODAY Network