After head coach John Harbaugh announced earlier this week that his three coordinators would return for the 2017 season, the Ravens have reportedly let go of two assistant coaches.
According to ESPN’s Adam Caplan, assistant offensive line coach Todd Washington and director of strength and conditioning Bob Rogucki will not return next season. The Ravens had made no formal announcement as of Thursday evening, but Harbaugh said Tuesday that staff changes would be coming despite the returns of offensive coordinator Marty Mornhinweg, defensive coordinator Dean Pees, and special teams coordinator Jerry Rosburg.
“Guys have opportunities. Guys have goals and ambitions and stuff like that,” Harbaugh said. “If you go through the ranks of different guys, everybody is in a different place. There’s always going to be change on your staff. We’re going to look to try to bring in some infusion of ideas, talent, and coaching ability that can make us better.”
Washington became the Ravens’ assistant offensive line coach in 2011 when Andy Moeller was in charge of the group and worked under current offensive line coach Juan Castillo for the last four seasons. A former NFL offensive lineman, the 40-year-old Washington became the 13th man in NFL history to win a Super Bowl as a player and as a coach when Baltimore won Super Bowl XLVII. In 2013, Washington turned down an offer to become the offensive line coach at the University of Southern California.
The Ravens offensive line endured injuries and inconsistency through much of the 2016 season, which isn’t the first time that Castillo’s work has come under fire. However, Harbaugh endorsed Castillo when asked if the group was on the right track going into 2017.
“We have a very good offensive line coach,” Harbaugh said. “If you watch him coach — which you guys do — I think it would be hard to watch him coach those guys and not think he does a very good job. But the other part of that is that we have to run the ball better, and we have to keep Joe [Flacco] cleaner. Every offensive line in the league feels like they want to keep their quarterback clean. I want to be great up front, and that is what we are shooting for.”
Rogucki, 63, had been part of the coaching staff since 2008 and spent time with Harbaugh in Philadelphia prior to that. The Ravens revamped their offseason training program in 2016 after hiring director of performance and recovery Steve Saunders.
A record number of players were placed on injured reserve during the 2015 season, prompting the organization to reevaluate its training methods.