There are a lot of great things about being a really good football team. But it always comes with a few downsides here and there. For one thing, it becomes more expensive to keep your roster together. Players from winning teams tend to get overpaid even more when they hit the open market because they’re seen as contributing to that success.
Another negative side effect of success is that those who put that success together at the schematic level draw a good deal of interest from the outside. And that’s what the Baltimore Ravens are experiencing right now, with both of their coordinators fielding a series of interviews for head coaching jobs, and at this point it feels unlikely that they don’t lose at least one of them.
Not that this is anything new to John Harbaugh. Rex Ryan and Chuck Pagano were both hired to be head coaches after serving as his defensive coordinator. Both Jim Caldwell and Gary Kubiak served brief stints between head coaching gigs as their offensive coordinator. So if he does lose a coordinator, he at least knows the routine.
The hotter name of the two is Greg Roman, who is in his first full season as their offensive coordinator in 2019. He architected the Ravens’ offense, geared toward running the football creatively and forcefully, leading to one of the highest-scoring offenses of all time, and the first to ever average over 200 yards passing and rushing in the same season.
One person who decidedly would not be happy about seeing Roman move on to a head-coaching gig is his quarterback, Lamar Jackson, the first-team All-Pro and eventual league MVP of the 2019 season. Jackson set NFL records this year, rushing for over 1200 yards while also throwing for over 3000, leading the NFL with 36 touchdown passes.
“They need to chill out”, he told reporters about teams bringing in Roman for head coaching interviews. “We got something to do right now. We need him to focus because we need to focus. We’re trying to get somewhere. You guys are going to have your turn when season is over with”.
Lamar Jackson on Greg Roman drawing interest from Browns for head coach opening: “They need to chill out. We got something to do right now. We need him to focus because we need to focus. We’re trying to get somewhere. You guys are going to have your turn when season is over with”
— Jamison Hensley (@jamisonhensley) January 3, 2020
Of course, what Jackson is referring to is in-season interviews, but I’m sure he would express the same sentiment about the possibility of him actually leaving. He wouldn’t begrudge the man his opportunity, but he understands the system that he put in place that has allowed him to thrive, at least this season. It would be unfortunate to break that up after just one year.