The Ravens put themselves in a good spot on Sunday afternoon. They moved ahead in the playoff race as they kept control of that sixth playoff spot in the AFC. With six games remaining, they control their own destiny in making the postseason for the first time in four years.
But as they prepare for the Atlanta Falcons next Sunday, Coach Harbaugh and the coaching staff have a dilemma that must be answered: Lamar Jackson, or Joe Flacco? There are some fans that might be reluctant to admit so, but right now there is a quarterback controversy in Charm City, whether you want to admit or not. Fans and analysts rushed to crown it as such from the moment Ozzie Newsome traded up and drafted Lamar Jackson in the first round back in April. Which I think most Raven fans will say is ridiculous, me included. But as Lamar Jackson sits at 2-0 as a starter, you have to think that Harbaugh will roll with the hot hand and hope to continue the momentum in the last stretch of the season. But on the other hand, most of us can see Harbaugh being too stubborn for his own good and staying loyal to his veteran quarterback that he’s had since coming to Baltimore. The coaching staff may look at it from a standpoint where they think they owe Joe one more chance in what could be his final year in the city of Baltimore. Its one of those things where you can see it going either way like a 50/50-coin flip.
But what side of the coin should Raven fans be pulling for?
Should we want to see what the future holds in Lamar Jackson? A future that looks to be pretty bright from what we’ve seen the last two weeks. Or do we want to see if Joe has one of those miraculous runs left in him? I think most would say you have to roll with the hot hand and you have to prepare Lamar for the future. Benching him after two starts and two wins would certainly hurt his confidence.
Over the last two weeks the Ravens offense have gone on to accumulate 819 yards. Over four hundred yards each of the last two games. Jackson just brings a different and better dynamic to the offense than Joe can. The offense looks completely reborn and so does the team. This ultimatum is something that could depend on if Harbaugh is coaching in Baltimore or another city in 2019. If he goes with Joe and they miss the playoffs, it could end up being the final decision he makes as Head Coach of The Ravens.
Selfishly, I can see being on the other side of the isle, for completely different reasons. If Harbaugh and the coaching staff decided to roll with Flacco instead of Jackson and it fails, it will result in the team most likely getting a completely new coaching staff. And that might just be what a quarterback like Lamar Jackson might need for the future. An offensive minded head coach, with an offensive coordinator that will help a young developing quarterback. I don’t think many of us can take another year of Marty Mornhinweg.
Only time will tell, it’s going to be another interesting week in Baltimore.