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Robert Griffin III says the Ravens’ new-look offense will ‘shock some people’

The Ravens were maybe the most unique team in football a season ago once they made the switch from Joe Flacco to Lamar Jackson under center. Adopting a run-heavy approach, the Ravens went 6-1 in games started by their then-rookie quarterback even though Jackson averaged only 13.1 completions per start.

As the Ravens head into the upcoming season with Jackson as their starter, Greg Roman as their new offensive coordinator, and Mark Ingram, Justice Hill, Marquise Brown, and Miles Boykin as their new playmakers, they should remain one of the most interesting teams in the league in large part because we have no idea what their offense is going to look like. 

Will they continue to run the ball at the rate they did a year ago? Or will we see Jackson throw the ball more frequently? If Jackson does throw the ball more, will his rookie receivers be ready to make an immediate impact?

We won’t know the answer to those questions until the season unfolds, but returning backup quarterback Robert Griffin III recently provided some insight into the Ravens’ new offense. By the sound of it, we should expect to be surprised by what we see.

“I’ve got to make sure I understand the offense, forward and backward,” Griffin said, per the team’s official website. “The offense will look different. I think we’ll shock some people with what we’re going to do. If we need to run it 60 times, we can do it. But if we need to throw it 30 to 40 times, we can also do it. I think that’s what we’re working on, to make sure we have those capabilities.”

It should come as no surprise, though, to hear that the Ravens want to create mismatches for their playmakers. It’s what every offense should aim for.

“This game is about mismatches and that’s what we’re trying to create,” Griffin said. “You get a guy like Hollywood {Brown}, it’s a speed mismatch. When you get a guy like Boykin, it’s a height and reach mismatch. Get them in situations where they can be successful. If we can get Hollywood out there in training camp, it will be interesting to see how it all plays out. Because the guys we have out there already, I think, are playing phenomenal. It’s exciting.”

RG3 isn’t wrong. The Ravens have some pieces that should scare opposing defenses. They were already a good running team a year ago, and then they went out and added Ingram in free agency and Hill in the draft. They also drafted two receivers in Brown and Boykin. Don’t overlook Roman’s importance to the offense. He saw success with both Colin Kaepernick in San Francisco and Tyrod Taylor in Buffalo. 

Of course, all of it will come down to Jackson’s development. That’s what makes the Ravens such an interesting team. If Jackson takes the next step, it’s not difficult to see the Ravens making the playoffs despite being stuck in a difficult division. But if Jackson’s development stalls, the Ravens could find it difficult to win games the way they did a year ago. 

Despite adding a ton on offense, they lost a lot on defense, most notably C.J. Mosley, Za’Darius Smith, Terrell Suggs, and Eric Weddle. The addition of Earl Thomas will certainly help, but it wouldn’t be surprising to see the defense take a step back. And if that happens, they’ll need the offense to take a step forward.

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