Let’s talk about this scheme. The system that the Ravens and Michigan run…whatever you want to call it…was the dominant scheme in football during the 2023 season.
Michigan had the number one defense in college football, going 15-0 and winning the national championship.
Baltimore went 13-4, absolutely choking every game they lost where the starters played (including in the playoffs), with the number one defense in the NFL. The first to lead the league in PPG, sacks, and takeaways in the same year. Had they not crapped the bed offensively against Kansas City, they’d be getting ready to play a team they already dismantled on the road for the Super Bowl.
Here are some notable offensive coaches that played against this defensive scheme this year and how many points their team put up against the system:
Mike Locksley - 24
Ryan Day - 24
Tommy Rees - 20
Kalen DeBoer/Ryan Grubb - 13
Bobby Slowik - 9/10
Zac Taylor - 24/20
Shane Steichen- 22
Kevin Stefanski - 3/33
Ben Johnson - 6
Kellen Moore - 10
Sean McVay - 29
Kyle Shanahan - 19
Mike McDaniel - 19
Andy Reid - 17
These two defensive staffs have since been picked apart, and rightfully so. Look at the production. Here are the guys who have been taken from each staff and who I expect will call plays for their respective teams next season…
Mike Macdonald - BAL DC → (SEA)
Jesse Minter - UM DC → (LAC)
Anthony Weaver - BAL AHC/DL → (MIA)
Dennard Wilson - BAL DC → (TEN)
I expect that Baltimore will run a similar system after the promotion of LB coach Zach Orr to DC, however it remains to be seen what Michigan will do, especially after their DL coach was hired for the same position with the Chargers.
There’s a good amount of Michigan fans on this board, and there’s a good amount of people who are just very knowledgeable about the game, Michigan fan or not. What to you makes this style of defense so unique and exotic? What would you even call it? How do you beat it?
I assume we’re going to see the answer to that last question as more people within the system have to be playing other people who run that same system. The coaches who coach it obviously know what it doesn’t work against.
What do you guys think?