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Ravens 2022 Season Review

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By: Tony Lombardi

When the Ravens started the 2022 season, they did so without a contract extension for Lamar Jackson. The contract or lack thereof, hung over the Ravens like a thundercloud. It hovered throughout the season and then thickened as the drama surrounding Lamar’s injuries led to widespread speculation. And now as the Ravens head into the offseason, the pending storm is shaping into a hurricane, one that the Ravens and their fans hope lands on shores not their own.

2022 season

The 2022 season on-whole was a disappointment, but it did include some lessons that are hopefully learned, along with some personnel developments that set up well for the future. Let’s take a look back at the 2022 season, one filled with adversity, just like its two predecessors.



Despite Lamar missing 5 ¾ regular season games; despite J.K. Dobbins sitting out 9 games; and despite Gus Edwards not dressing for 8 games, the Ravens still managed to finish second in rushing with 2,720 net yards and a 5.2 yards/carry average. That’s a credit to the run design and execution, particularly when one considers how inept the passing game was during the 2022 season…The Ravens deficiencies in offensive play calling and the team’s irritating habit of flirting with the play clock, essentially giving the opposing defense a starter’s gun to explode out of their respective stances, the offensive line played well. Ronnie Stanley’s return to the lineup provided stability; Tyler Linderbaum exceeded rookie expectations while Morgan Moses was a steady presence along the right edge. Ben Powers had his best season while Kevin Zeitler earned an extension.


The defensive front was solid throughout the 2022 season. Calais Campbell played in 14 games as he did in 2021 but the results were much improved in sacks (5 ½), QB hits (14) and forced fumbles (2) despite taking fewer snaps in 2022 compared to 2021 (550 v. 617)…Broderick Washington developed into a force as a run defender, freeing up opportunities for the inside LB’s…Justin Madubuike’s trajectory continues to climb with an uptick in tackles, TFL and sacks. He was dominant at times…Justin Houston led the team with 9 ½ sacks and 17 QB hits despite 182 fewer snaps than in 2021.

Roquan Smith was a difference maker, elevating the play of the entire defensive unit. It is quite telling when a player dresses for just 9 games with a team yet still manages to be named to the All Pro Team, still manages to be named the team MVP by the Ravens beat writers…Smith’s presence certainly provided a lift to Patrick Queen’s game who in Year 3 of his career, showed why the Ravens made him their 2020 first-round pick. He played fast, smart and improved drastically as an open-field tackler.

The Ravens secondary played better as the year progressed but it’s safe to say that they didn’t play to their collective level of pay. Marcus Williams started hot but a wrist injury sidelined him for seven games, yet he still led the team with 4 interceptions…Marlon Humphrey was the secondary’s steadiest player, second on the team in INT’s (3) and fourth in tackles (71). Marlon supported the run well, was an effective blitzer (3 sacks) and showed versatility as a defender on the perimeter and in the slot. He also went the entire season without giving up a touchdown…After a slow start, Kyle Hamilton emerged as a dangerous chess piece for DC Mike Macdonald. He finished 5th on the team in tackles (61), came on as a blitzer and despite less than ideal size and change-of-direction skills for the job, Hamilton handled slot coverage assignments respectfully. The 14th overall pick was also extremely effective when assigned to cover tight ends.

Special Teams

Justin Tucker had another productive season but he did hit a rough patch over the course of a couple games during which the operation had three FGA’s blocked. That dropped Tucker’s FG conversion percentage to 86%, down from a career high of 94.6% in 2021. He did manage to put up 142 points, a career high.



Lamar, Tyler Huntley and Anthony Brown combined for 3,202 yards passing, 30th best (or 3rd worst) in the NFL. Their collective passer rating was 82.5 (23rd); completion percentage was 61.5% (26th); 19 TD passes (T-19th); they had just 33 completions of 20+ yards (31st) and converted 149 first downs by air (29th). This is partly on the QB’s, partly on the offensive design and partly on the dearth of pass catching threats the team dresses on Sundays (or Monday, Thursday, Saturday).


Marcus Peters looked and played like a corner coming off an ACL injury. Peters made a couple of impactful plays behind the LOS of scrimmage in run support or when recognizing a bubble screen, but overall, it wasn’t your prototypical campaign for the 30-year-old, 8-year vet. He had his fewest number of INT’s (1) in any season as a professional and when targeted, opposing QB’s had a combined 113.5 rating which ranked 177th among all corners, per PFF…Odafe Oweh, although he played his best games late in the season, just hasn’t developed as a pass rusher – certainly not one drafted in the first round (2021). Compared to a relatively average rookie campaign, Oweh experienced a drop off in key stats such as sacks (5 to 3); QB hits (15 to 11) and forced fumbles (3 to 1) despite playing in all 17 games. Until his late surge, most observers were prepared to slap the “bust” label on Odafe. Now, we’ll wait and see if he builds upon the end-of-the-season momentum.

Special Teams

Jordan Stout finished the 2022 season with a 46.0 yards/punt average (T-23rd) and a net average of 41.0 yards (T-21st). Comparatively speaking, Sam Koch in 2021 average 44.4 yards with a net of 40.0. Stout was marginally better than Koch, but certainly not the upgrade expected from a punter drafted in the fourth round.



As a unit, the Ravens wide receivers produced 124-1,517-7 (receptions-yards-touchdowns), averaging 12.2 yards/catch. Comparatively speaking, the Vikings Justin Jefferson alone, posted 128 receptions for 1,809 yards and 8 TD’s (14.1 YPC). That’s pretty bad. That’s pretty ugly!


When we look back on the 2022 season, we may categorize it as a season of missed opportunities. According to ESPN, the Ravens are the 39th team in NFL history to hold a double-digit lead in each of its first 6 games. It is the only one not to have a winning record after said games. Fourth quarter defensive collapses were the norm during the 2022 season. Losses to the Dolphins, Bills, Giants, Jaguars and Steelers all could have been prevented if the defense had simply held serve.

Ravens 2022 season EDC Harbaugh
Photo Credit: Getty Images



When I watch other offenses play, it’s as if those teams play a different game than the Ravens – especially when observing the postseason participants. Not only in pass design but also with the game’s finer nuances such as (in no particular order):

• Throwing receivers open
• Back-shoulder throws
• Taking shots downfield
• Executing screens
• Pick plays
• Red zone efficiency
• Pre-snap adjustments
• Using cadence as a weapon
• Hurrying to the LOS to prevent defensive sub-packages
• Running no-huddle
• Catching opponents with 12-men on the field
• Racing to the LOS to get a play off before a gain can be overturned by replay

We’ve seen offenses run by young, inexperienced quarterbacks do most, if not all of the above. The Ravens do none of that. Now it’s easy to blame the offensive staff and they are certainly culpable. But at the end of the day, John Harbaugh is responsible for all of the above. He should demand these things from his offense, yet year after year these tools cannot be found in the Ravens vault. Harbaugh has questioned some play-calling, post mortem. But nothing is done. He’s wondered aloud to the media why the offense struggles with the play clock yet nothing changes. And consequently, through the inability to implement positive changes, he endorses the offensive failures along with Roman’s mind-blowing explanation that the milking of the play clock is strategic in that it keeps the ball away from opponents, limiting their offensive plays. Those are “treasures” per Roman. I swear I thought I was in the Twilight Zone listening to that load of raven dung.

Mike Macdonald got off to a rough start but things balanced out during the backend of the 2022 season. After 3 weeks the Ravens ranked 32nd overall on defense, 32nd v. pass; after 8 games they ranked 25th overall and 32nd v. pass; after 12 games they ranked 20th overall and 31st v. pass. The Ravens finished tied for 9th in the league in yards allowed (5,513) and 3rd in points allowed (315) while the pass defense improved to 26th by the 2022 regular season close. Now the improvement can in part be attributed to a relatively weak schedule during the second half of the 2022 season, but clearly things improved, particularly after the addition of Roquan Smith.

Front Office

The Ravens had a very productive rookie class led by first-round picks Kyle Hamilton and Tyler Linderbaum, both of whom were named to the Pro Football Writer All Rookie Team.

David Ojabo provided a glimpse of what he is capable of during the regular season finale in Cincinnati; Travis Jones flashed and showed promise as a disruptive interior D-lineman; Daniel Faalele has the tools, length and work ethic to become a very serviceable right tackle; Isaiah Likely if used properly, can be a receiving threat while fellow classmate tight end Charlie Kolar seems to have a knack for finding soft spots in coverage – a bit of a poor man’s Mark Andrews. It was a very fine haul by GM Eric DeCosta – potentially a legendary one. DeCosta’s mid-season trade for Roquan Smith positively lifted the entire franchise on and off the field given Roquan’s leadership and commitment to the community.

The front office’s biggest failures lie in its inability to resolve any of the questions surrounding Lamar Jackson as a passer in the league and the way they bankrupted the wide receiver room, just as they did to the offensive line the season before. Without even an average group of WR targets, without an average passing scheme, the Ravens asked Lamar to make filet mignon out of scrapple. And now, the questions we had about Lamar leading into the 2022 season are the same ones we have leading into 2023. In the end, the Ravens failed to fully take advantage of Lamar’s rookie contract.

The Margot Robbie Award

Mark Andrews, Margot Robbie Award Winner 2022 season

He had 34 fewer receptions during the 2022 season than he did in 2021; 514 fewer receiving yards; four fewer touchdowns and 1.1 yards per reception less than his 2021 All Pro season. This represents the collateral damage of bad quarterback play; bad play design and an awful receiving corps. Opponents invested their coverage resources to stop Mark Andrews, whose last touchdown was on October 16.

But Andrews team-first approach never wavered despite taking an uncommon beating. Andrews’ supreme effort trying to chase down Sam Hubbard during the defender’s 98-yard fumble return in the Wild Card round, was in many way a microcosm of his season. Maximum effort that came up short.

With a little help from his friends (along with the coaches and front office), there’s no reason not to expect Andrews to return to 2021 form in 2023. Rest well “Mandrews”. You’ve earned it and the 2022 season Margot Robbie.


The Ravens have plenty to do this offseason to keep them busy. They really aren’t that far off from being a contender, yet in some ways the gap between them and those teams still standing in the playoffs, at times, seems insurmountable. And maybe that’s because the Ravens approach to improvement doesn’t seem to change with the times. It’s about time. It’s about time to make some bold changes! And that time in NOW!

If Lamar Jackson sticks around, the Ravens can’t make a market value investment in their franchise quarterback without an offensive mind that can develop him as a passer and without quality assets at the skill positions. The Bills went out and acquired Stefon Diggs and Josh Allen’s play took off. The Eagles made a deal to acquire A.J. Brown and now Philadelphia, with their third-year signal caller Jalen Hurts, is knocking on the door of Super Bowl 57.

To make that happen it will require some crafty managerial skills on the parts of Harbaugh and DeCosta. Harbaugh will have to navigate the interview process in a way that attracts quality OC candidates despite the uncertainties, the biggest being Lamar’s contract. Will a great OC come to Baltimore without Lamar? Will Lamar stay without a great OC? That my friends is a chicken-and-the-egg conundrum.

It won’t be easy, but it is necessary. Find that OC. Find those weapons. Squeeze the roster for cap space. There’s really no alternative.

Otherwise, we’ll all be here a year from now talking about the same flipping things.

The defense rests your honor.


[Related Article: Ravens Aren’t That Far Off]

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Originally posted on Russell Street Report