Glenn Clark: I Can’t Shake Away From This Definitive Statement About The Baltimore Ravens

I can’t say for certain, but I feel like I’ve written this column before. Hell, it’s possible I’ve written it multiple times in the last couple of years.

As a Baltimore sports columnist/show host, I’ve attempted to be more “voice of reason” than “loudest voice,” at least during the last decade. When the yelling is the loudest, I try my best to find a milder, more pragmatic take. This is sports we’re talking about, after all. These things usually AREN’T worth getting that worked up about.

So after the Baltimore Ravens soundly defeated the Los Angeles Chargers to improve to 5-1 on the 2021 season, I was left trying to figure out how to make sense of it all. I began crafting a Monday morning column in my head and the discussion that would drive Glenn Clark Radio for the next couple of days.

“Did this game tell us more about the Ravens or more about the Chargers?” I thought. “That’s the idea. Or maybe I should remind everyone that this was just one game and the NFL is weird and it doesn’t necessarily mean anything moving forward.”

There is, of course, always truth to such a sentiment. What happens in one National Football League contest regularly has zero bearing on what might happen in future contests. The Ravens were an absolute disaster defensively against the Indianapolis Colts and then looked like the freaking Baltimore Ravens (of years past) against the Chargers. We know better than to overreact.

OK, we SHOULD know better than to overreact. And we SHOULD know better than to just start looking for things in our garage to toss onto the fire when it is starting to die and we are running low on wood and the neighbors are over and everyone has had just enough wine that we’re not ready for the night to end. We most certainly do not actually know better than to overreact. And come to think of it, that hockey stick you took from Grandma’s basement when your grandfather passed away MIGHT have been signed by Bobby Hull.

Mistakes happen.

But as I kept thinking about what the most reasonable take was after such a bludgeoning, I couldn’t shake away from one definitive statement.

The Baltimore Ravens are a truly excellent football team and it’s very much OK to be unreasonably excited about them.

I put it in bold because, you guys, I mean it. It’s OK to feel the way you do today. It’s OK to be boisterous and make annoying jokes at the expense of your friends who are Browns fans and start investigating and even make deposits for a trip to Southern California (be warned, unless you one of the guys who plays for the Baltimore Ravens, you probably can’t afford it).

The Ravens have already taken down two legitimate AFC contenders this season. The Chargers are very much legitimate even if they didn’t look the part Oct. 17. One tough Sunday in the NFL does not a narrative make.

Five consecutive wins in very different forms and fashions? That’s narrative-making music, my friends.

Before the Chargers game, the Ravens had won four straight games thanks to Lamar Jackson posting historic passing numbers; Lamar Jackson making determined, significant runs; wide receivers and tight ends making huge catches; somehow overcoming multiple unforgivable drops; a record-setting miraculous kick; a makeshift offensive line coming together on the fly; a rookie edge rusher getting after a future Hall of Fame quarterback and then making a game-saving strip; aggressive fourth-down decisions; even more aggressive fourth-down conversions, and even a field goal block.

They can now add to the list “an overwhelming defensive performance led by a journeyman linebacker in his third stint with the team” and “a dominant run game from a trio of backs who weren’t on the team in late August.”

It’s almost tough to imagine a new way for them to win a game next week. Could Sam Koch turn a fake punt into a 74-yard touchdown run? Could a returning Ronnie Stanley be used only as a bonus blocking tight end and catch four touchdowns? Could Ty’Son Williams go from totally inactive to breaking Adrian Peterson’s single-game rushing record within the span of seven days?

The sign of a really good football team is quite simple: they win football games. They win when they do what they do best. They win when they’re not doing what they do best. They have good football players at many positions but more importantly, they have the depth to survive when those football players get hurt or aren’t at their best. They have a coaching staff that can handle different situations. They have a front office that can work on the fly.

The Ravens have all of those things, and it has been remarkable to watch them all come together.

None of this guarantees a Super Bowl title. None of it guarantees that they’ll even beat the Bengals next week.

But there’s no reason to feel anything other than very good about this team and what it has accomplished and what it could accomplish, and there’s no reason to be anything other than through-the-roof excited.

But make sure those deposits are refundable, you guys. I mean, we haven’t even gotten to the first division game yet.

Photo Credit: Kenya Allen/PressBox

Glenn Clark

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