They were picked to advance to the Super Bowl. Unfortunately, injuries failed them. However, they are not justified to say that a deficiency of able bodies was to entirely blame for the 2015 disappointment.
In part, the Ravens’ team strength was so much compromised by severe injuries. A range of injuries, many picked by the Ravens’ most substantial players, was a heavy contributor to the Ravens’ 1st season of losses since 2008 under Coach John Harbaugh. Baltimore, by last Thanksgiving, was short of Joe Flacco (quarterback starter), Terrell Suggs (linebacker), Steve Smith Sr. (wide receiver), and Justin Forsett (running back) – thanks to season-ending injuries. This was only the Ravens’ offense.
Still, Baltimore knows better than to place guilt as regards its 5-11 finish exclusively on injuries. Prior to training for the 2015 season, the Ravens were coming up short in matches whose outcomes were determined in the final minutes. Baltimore’s 1st 0-3 opening in franchise history owed to 3 beatings by a 14-point aggregate. Ultimately, 9 of the team’s 11 defeats were by 8 points and below.
Harbaugh got a taste of just how taxing it would be when Breshad Perriman – a 1st round draft pick rookie – picked up a knee injury during day 1 of training. The swift receiver missed the whole (2015) season after aggravating the injury during a warm-up session before playing the Bengals.
Suggs tore his Achilles during the Denver opener, and for the 2nd time in 3 years, the Ravens subsequently lost a post-season spot after 5 consecutive appearances in the playoffs.
The Ravens need to regain their strength for the coming season. First, they must get healthy this offseason. Secondly, the team’s roster needs improvement – before April, when Baltimore looks to enter the league draft with the 6th overall pick.
There is cause for optimism come next season – Flacco believes he will be fit by August, Smith will not retire, and Marc Trestman and Dean Pees will return, apparently.
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