Eric DeCosta Has Ravens Set Up to Be One of the ‘Most Successful, Consistent’ Teams Over Next Three Years
Eric DeCosta is universally regarded as one of the best general managers in the NFL. In the opinion of two of The Ringer’s analysts, DeCosta is in the top two.
Steven Ruiz placed DeCosta at No. 1 in his 2022 GM rankings, while Ben Solak had DeCosta at No. 2.
Ruiz noted that before DeCosta took over as GM in 2019 when Ozzie Newsome moved into the executive vice president position, he played a key role in the front office for years as Director of Player Personnel and Assistant General Manager.
“From 2011 on, 2010 on, I think Eric DeCosta has his fingerprints all over that roster, and the Ravens are good every year,” Ruiz said on “The Ringer NFL Show” podcast. “Last year they were the most injured team ever and still probably should’ve made the playoffs.”
Solak, who ranked DeCosta behind only the Buffalo Bills’ Billy Beane, said: “Both Beane and DeCosta did an unbelievable job building around precisely who their quarterback was. Both have done a tremendous job maximizing their [QB’s] strengths and masking the weaknesses. Both have done an excellent job fulfilling the needs of their defensive coordinator with body types and certain roles. The Ravens, especially, I’ve been impressed by their willingness to move on from certain players [such as] Matt Judon in order to let a younger guy step in and keep the cap healthy. Right now I’d say the Ravens have a healthier cap than the Bills and that’s to their advantage as they and the Bills look down the barrel of these huge second-contract quarterbacks.”
Solak also praised DeCosta for getting great value in trading for Calais Campbell and Marcus Peters as well as setting the Ravens up for success over the next several years.
“All the stuff that other GMs can hang their hats on, it feels like DeCosta can hang his hat on every single one of them,” Solak said. “Would it be nice if we hang a championship game appearance for Lamar Jackson to really put our chest into it? Sure. I think we’re going to get there. I feel comfortable and confident putting DeCosta into this spot and saying over the next three years the Ravens are going to be one of the most successful, consistent, ‘don’t even have to worry about it, we will be a good football team,’ and it’s because of how well they built the roster. ”
Surprisingly, The Ringer’s Kevin Clark did not have DeCosta in his top 10.
“If I’m going by my parameters, which is the last two years plus the year going forward and maybe a dash of 2024, DeCosta is a good GM, not a great GM,” Clark said.
Still, Clark said DeCosta would be at the top of his list of GMs he would hire tomorrow if he was an owner.
“The job that Eric DeCosta and Ozzie Newsome did building around Lamar Jackson is one of the best team-building jobs I’ve ever seen in modern football, since the merger,” Clark said. “They changed everything and they produced an MVP and a team that’s going to be successful moving forward.”