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Ravens Have Aligned Their Draft Approach With New Offensive Coordinator

Offensive Coordinator Todd Monken
Offensive Coordinator Todd Monken

Shortly after Todd Monken was hired as offensive coordinator in February, he met with the Ravens' scouting department.

The scouts wanted intel from Monken on potential draft prospects - players who fit his offense and players who don't. As the Ravens prepare for the upcoming draft, part of the process is targeting players who will transition easily into the new scheme being built by Monken and the coaching staff.

"We got Todd in there in the room and talked about his offensive philosophy, the types of players he wants at each position, and what he thought about our players," Director of Player Personnel Joe Hortiz said. "The guys that are here, how they match what he can do, who fits his scheme [and] his system.

"The thing in talking to him that you love is that he's versatile, and he said to just get him players and he'll make them work. That's exciting to hear as a scout; now you just go out and try to find the best players for the Ravens."

During his career, Monken hasn't been wed to just one style of offense. As the offensive coordinator at Georgia last year, Monken's passing attack ran through tight end Brock Bowers, the leading receiver with 63 catches for 942 yards and seven touchdowns.

In 2018 when Monken was Tampa Bay's offensive coordinator, the Buccaneers led the NFL in passing yards per game (320.8) as wide receiver Mike Evans had 86 catches, a career-high 1,524 yards and eight touchdowns.

In 2019 as the Browns' offensive coordinator, Monken relied more heavily on a running attack led by Nick Chubb who rushed for 1,494 yards and eight touchdowns. However, Browns receiver Jarvis Landry also had a career-best 1,174 yards – another example of Monken getting the most out of a wide receiver.

Quarterbacks, wide receivers, tight ends and running backs have all thrived in Monken's designs.

"He wasn't kind of locked into a system quite as much," Head Coach John Harbaugh said at the Combine. "He's been in every kind of system, he's coached at every level, he's run the ball, he's thrown the ball, he's protected different ways, he's played with four and five wide receivers, he's had running backs, he's played with tight ends. He's kind of done everything."

Baltimore has been widely linked to at least three wide receivers in mock drafts – Quentin Johnston of TCU, Zay Flowers of Boston College and Jordan Addison of USC. The Ravens have already begun retooling the receiving corps by signing Nelson Agholor in free agency, and have reportedly met with free agent wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr.

While Monken has given his take on draft prospects, the scouts are also getting offensive draft input from new Running Backs Coach Willie Taggert, a longtime college head coach, and Quarterbacks Coach Tee Martin, a former offensive coordinator at USC.

The Ravens' transition to a new offensive scheme is well underway, and the draft is another part of the process. They will look to add players who can help Monken take the entire offense, particularly the passing game, to another level.

"I was really impressed with Todd, and I've been able to spend a little time with him here and get his vision for what he wants to do," General Manager Eric DeCosta said at the Combine. "Anytime you bring in a new coordinator, there are going to be some slight changes.

"Our system for evaluating and building out a draft board is not going to change. And basically, the culture and what we look for at most positions will not change. The fiber of what we believe in, in players [will not change]. But Todd will have his opinions and have a voice, and he'll have specific things that maybe he thinks we're lacking or that might make his offense more robust. We'll look at that very closely. We've been through a lot of offensive coordinators, and every time they come in, I look at it as a great opportunity for me to learn from those guys and to do a better job of building out a board and being a better drafter."

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