Fans and media members have been calling for the Ravens to add a playmaking wide receiver for a few years now.
But when the Ravens' receivers themselves start asking for help, that's a telling sign.
Talking with reporters earlier in the week, wideout Mark Clayton said that regardless of what happens this offseason with the Ravens' four free agent wide receivers, the team should look to add a big-play threat to the mix.
"The position that we're in, we're probably going to end up having to find a guy that's going to come in and be a straight playmaker," Clayton said. "My initial thoughts about it, with the position that we're in with everybody, I think we're going to have to find somebody to come in and make plays for us."
Baltimore's lack of a consistent playmaking receiver was evident this season when looking at the absence of big plays in the passing game.
Despite quarterback Joe Flacco's cannon of an arm, he only connected with his wide receivers on five plays over 35 yards all season long. Four of the five completions went to Derrick Mason, who is contemplating retirement. The fifth was to Clayton.
It's worth noting, for comparison's sake, that running back Ray Rice had eight plays of 35 or more yards by himself, four of which came through the passing game.
Asked about the wide receiver position during his season-ending press conference this week, head coach John Harbaugh said adding pieces for Flacco to work with is in the plans for this offseason.
"We're going to do everything we can to make our team better, and that goes for the wide receiver position just like it goes for the defensive back position," Harbaugh said. "You put a level of priority on different positions, so we've got a plan that way. We've got an idea and a direction we want to go, for sure."
"I think we've got to put as many good players around Joe Flacco as we possibly can. That's going to be important."
Harbaugh went on to say that a key to improving the wide receiving corps will be bringing back some of the guys on the 2009 roster who will hit the free agent market this offseason. Mason, Clayton, Kelley Washington and Demetrius Williams will all be free agents in one form or another.
"We've got good players, and a lot of that is bringing guys back," Harbaugh said. "Some of those guys you're talking about at receiver are restricted free agents [Clayton and Williams], so we have an opportunity to bring those guys back, and we certainly plan to do that. And then if we can add more players into the mix, build the competition, and let the best guys win their jobs, or their catches, or their opportunities - that's what we're really all about."