A day after Jim Caldwell departed for the Detroit Lions, Head Coach John Harbaugh released an update on the Ravens’ search for their next offensive coordinator.
“We will be interviewing coaches inside and outside of the building,” Harbaugh said.
Internal candidates, such as Wide Receivers Coach Jim Hostler, come with an understanding of Harbaugh’s preferences. But Harbaugh is also assured that he could find that outside of the Under Armour Performance Center’s walls.
Other rumored outside candidates include Browns Offensive Coordinator Norv Turner, former Texans Head Coach Gary Kubiak and former Cleveland Browns Offensive Coordinator and Minnesota Vikings Head Coach Brad Childress.
“We’re confident that whether we select someone currently on our staff or from another team, we will have a coach that best fits what we want to be, where we want to go and understands what Ravens football is all about," Harbaugh said. "I have a profile in mind, and we are excited about those who have shown interest in the job.”
Harbaugh has had success finding the answer from within. He promoted three defensive coordinators (Greg Mattison, Chuck Pagano and Dean Pees), and Caldwell was also an internal promotion.
Last season, the Ravens offense ranked 29th in the NFL in average yards per game (307.4) and 25th in points per game (20).
But Baltimore has a number of attractive pieces moving forward. The Ravens have their franchise quarterback in
Baltimore, which missed the playoffs for the first time in six years under Harbaugh, is an appealing spot for any coach because of its success and management.
“One of the positives with the change is that we’re reminded that this franchise – and team – is attractive to many in the profession," Harbaugh said. "We will have a coaching staff that will get the most out of our players.”
Harbaugh also spoke for the first time publicly about Caldwell’s promotion in Detroit.
Caldwell spent two years with Harbaugh in Baltimore, and Harbaugh said he would have been back for a third season had he not been hired by the Lions.
“We are all so happy for Jim," Harbaugh said. "He deserves this opportunity, and I congratulate the Lions for selecting him. We’re disappointed that we’ve lost Jim. We were looking forward to making progress on offense with Jim leading the charge as coordinator.
“Jim is a teacher, he is honorable, he is a respected leader, and every person with the Ravens will miss him. Players and assistants respond to him. You understand why he was named Detroit’s head coach and why all the other teams had him among the finalists.”
General Manager Ozzie Newsome also released this statement:
“I believe it would be difficult to find anyone with the Ravens who is more respected than Jim Caldwell. That includes players, coaches and other staff members. He earned that because of the person he is and his extensive knowledge about football, including the keys to winning and his ability to teach all of that. Personally, it is a privilege to know him, and it was an honor to work with him. We put Jim in a difficult position a year ago when we named him offensive coordinator late in the season. All he did was help us turn our offense around, and we won the Super Bowl. He has many strengths, but one that is sometimes overlooked is his ability to bring a coaching staff together. He has already succeeded as a head coach, and he will again in Detroit.”
Ravens players, including quarterback Joe Flacco, said kind words about Caldwell yesterday upon his hiring by Detroit.
“I enjoyed my time with Jim greatly," Harbaugh said. "He is a man that I will always respect as a football coach, leader and a friend. Through his calming influence and extensive knowledge of the game, he was an integral part of our success over the past few years. He will be missed by me and the Ravens. I wish him the best of luck in Detroit.”