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Scorched Wings: Burned Out on this Era of Ravens Football

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By: Ben Dackiw

There’s no two ways around it: I am plain burnt out on the Baltimore Ravens.

They’re my team. I love them unconditionally with all my heart and soul, but wow the second half of this season, right on the heels of how 2021 ended, has all been downright exhausting.

As I sat and waited for an “extreme weather” warning to take effect on my college campus this week (BOOMER!), these feelings on our purple-clad squad came flooding in.

These feelings begin and end with one man: Lamar Jackson.

To be quite honest, I would not lose a wink of sleep if Eric DeCosta pulled the trigger and traded Jackson tomorrow. This whole situation with the soon-to-be free agent QB has been an exercise in tedium. Jackson decided to “bet on himself.”

It didn’t work. The Ravens have the same paltry amount of playoff wins (2) since winning Super Bowl XLVII that they did two years ago. Three of their last four playoff appearances have been one-and-done trips.

For how much we hear about “The Ravens Way” that’s just not acceptable, and everyone in that building in Owings Mills knows it. That doesn’t make watching playoff losses sting any less.

What’s Jackson’s signature moment in the postseason? We’re five years into this guy’s career and I’m drawing a blank. I guess it had to be the 50-yard TD run against the Titans? What else would it be?

Yeah, that’s it. Four playoff games, one shining moment, and a 1-3 record.

Of course, the Ravens’ lack of postseason success is not solely on Lamar. That issue was here before he was and, sadly, his arrival has not fixed it. Joe Burrow is on his way to back-to-back AFC Championships and Patrick Mahomes is hosting his fifth straight AFC Championship. Jalen Hurts just made it to the NFC Championship as well.

The Ravens have yet to make the AFC Championship with Lamar under center. They haven’t been to the game since January of 2013.

So what is it about Lamar that exhausts me? It’s not even something that Lamar himself does. It isn’t his fault. It’s his fans.

“Oh, so you mean Ravens fans?”

Nope. I mean Lamar fans.

To these folks, nothing can ever be Lamar’s fault. It’s always his targets, his offensive line, or the front office. Lamar can never be at fault. It doesn’t matter that he didn’t look great in the weeks before he got hurt in 2021, or basically all of 2022 following the win against New England; no, there were other things to blame.

We are way past fending off the “he’s a running back” narrative on social media. To me, the way Lamar fans defend him on social media is downright patronizing. Lamar is a grown man. He doesn’t need people on Twitter to get offended after every little slight, particularly after how he played for most of the past two seasons.

Was he missing his WR1 for most of the year? Yes. Guess what, if he gets his big contract, it’s still a cap league. Somewhere on this roster will take a hit if Lamar re-signs (and I’m not convinced he will, by the way), and whatever that is will end up being the next scapegoat.

I said to myself that if Lamar doesn’t play in the Wild Card Round, then he has played his final game as a Raven. After Eric DeCosta and John Harbaugh’s press conference last week, during which they said all the right things, I’m still not convinced Lamar is staying.

If someone offers a Russell Wilson-like trade package, it’s hard to imagine the Ravens turning it down. That’s all I have to say about that.

Whatever the decision ends up being on the QB’s long term future, I just hope it happens soon.

I can’t take much more of this. End the drama, everyone.

The post Scorched Wings: Burned Out on this Era of Ravens Football appeared first on Russell Street Report.

Originally posted on Russell Street Report