The Baltimore Ravens have lost a lot of members of their coaching staff this offseason, though none from the coordinator ranks. Unlike with the Pittsburgh Steelers, who allowed the contracts of a number of coaches to expire, or in the case of James Daniel, a retirement, Baltimore’s coaching departures came from these coaches deciding to take opportunities elsewhere.
The latest departure is running backs coach Matt Weiss, who just so happens to be taking a job at Michigan—where he will work under Jim Harbaugh, the brother of Ravens head coach John Harbaugh. It wouldn’t be the first time one brother stole something from another.
Weiss spent more than a decade in the Ravens organization, but he has served a variety of roles over the years, spending most of his time on the defensive side of the ball, at one point serving as cornerbacks coach.
He has been the team’s running backs coach since 2019, during which the Ravens have established themselves as the most dominant running team in the NFL, but for how much of that he actually deserves credit is at least ambiguous…when you consider that their leading runner in both seasons was their quarterback.
Be that as it may, Harbaugh’s move to fill Weiss’ shoes is a familiar one—promote from within. They named Craig Van Steeg as their next running backs coach, and like Weiss before him, he spent a long time in the team’s coaching ranks in other roles prior to that posting. He was, however, most recently the assistant running backs coach.
“Craig is a highly-regarded member of our staff and someone who’s served as an integral part of our offense for many years”, Harbaugh said in a statement through the team’s website. “He has vast experience coaching and coordinating offenses, a thorough understanding of our schemes and techniques, and has a great relationship with our running backs. Craig is a dedicated coach and teacher who has a proven ability for getting the most out of our players”.
With Lamar Jackson at quarterback and second-year running back J.K. Dobbins now established as their lead runner, the Ravens’ running game figures to be in good hands as far as their ball carriers go. There are some issues along the offensive line, however, that they want to address, and that starts with trying to appease Orlando Brown to be content for one more year before he hits free agency in 2022.