Baltimore Ravens coach John Harbaugh has a knack for finding analogies to describe his team, and he pulled out his latest Thursday afternoon.
While taking questions from season ticket holders on a conference call, Harbaugh described the 2019 Ravens as an iceberg. Elite teams the NFL’s Titanics didn’t notice Baltimore before the season, Harbaugh said, perhaps because they saw a young roster built around unconventional quarterback Lamar Jackson that lost a slew of defensive stars in free agency.
But the Ravens wound up causing plenty of havoc during a 14-2 season. Jackson won the league’s MVP award, the team sent 12 players to the Pro Bowl and they claimed the AFC’s top postseason seed before bowing out of the playoffs with a loss to the Titans.
Harbaugh explained all of this to point out how the perception of his team has changed in the past nine months.
Starting next year, we’re not going to be the iceberg, said Harbaugh, who guided the Ravens to nine double-digit victories last season. People are going to see us. We’re going to be everybody’s most important game.
Most sportsbooks give the Ravens the second best odds to win the Super Bowl next season, behind only the defending champion Chiefs. Baltimore led the NFL in scoring last year, and Jackson’s ascent to stardom snatched the attention of football coaches, players and fans across the country.
The Ravens are suddenly a glamorous title favorite. That’s why Harbaugh and some of his players are expecting to get every opponents’ best shot.