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Justice Hill Could Benefit From “Oklahoma-esque” Offense in Baltimore

Baltimore is implementing an up-tempo offensive style that could benefit Justice Hill.



Justice Hill left Oklahoma State with a year of eligibility left on the table to get compensated appropriately for his talents in the NFL, but he still can’t quite escape Oklahoma.

After being drafted by the Baltimore Ravens in the fourth round of this year’s draft, he joined an offensive ecosystem that is undergoing some tinkering with second-year quarterback Lamar Jackson, a Heisman-winner whose game is predicated on running and not passing. While Jackson can pass and can fulfill traditional quarterback duties, he thrived at Louisville in a wide-open system that the Ravens are now trying to install. As Matthew Berry of ESPN noted in a podcast this week, that system could look pretty familiar to one Justice Hill.

“There are two sources, and both have said to me in separate conversations that they’re hearing that the Ravens offense is going to be almost Oklahoma-esque. That they’re trying to be very Lincoln Riley-inspired, and they want to throw the ball a lot, go uptempo, do a bunch of different things,” said Berry.

The new-look offense under new offensive coordinator Greg Roman is undeniably an effort to make Jackson more comfortable running the offense full time, but it could have a cascading effect that will benefit Hill in his new spot. Not only is he familiar with one Lincoln Riley, having seen firsthand what his offenses can do, but he’s played a similar style himself at OSU where uptempo, throwing the ball and doing a bunch of different things is kind of the name of the game.

Baltimore is probably going to ride running back import Mark Ingram II pretty heavy this season after acquiring him from the Saints, and the trio of Gus Edwards, Kenneth Dixon and Tyler Ervin all have Hill beat in experience, but familiarity with an offensive scheme could give the former Cowboy a leg up in the preseason to potentially earn quality reps early in his career.

“I’m just doing whatever I can to try and get on the field,” Justice said in a recent interview with the Ravens’ in-house media. “Whether it’s returning or catching the ball out of the backfield or running the ball, I just want to be able to do everything.”

Even with a dynamic running back room in place and a top-heavy depth chart at the position, Hill could break onto the scene as a specialist. He says he’s involved in kick return this preseason and comfortable making plays from a different perspective than he did in college, but if he gets a chance to see plays on offense this season, it’s possible that the tailor-made Lamar Jackson offense could fit him like a glove.

“We’ve heard John Harbaugh say that he thinks this offense is going to revolutionize the NFL,” said Berry. “Certainly they’ve made some interesting moves. I don’t know if I buy it, but it’s interesting, no?”

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