After months of reports over a soured relationship between John Harbaugh and Eric DeCosta, the Ravens’ new general manger wants to set the record straight: It was an enemy attack.
At his introductory press conference Wednesday, DeCosta said the speculation he and Harbaugh wouldn’t work well together bothered him, calling it “subterfuge.”
“I would see that, and I would read it, and all I would think to myself is, ‘We have enemies out there who are trying to create divisions and cracks and fissures and things like that,’” DeCosta told reporters. “I get it. It’s what we do around draft time. I stand up here at draft time and tell you guys things, and sometimes I have an agenda. So, I get it. But it did upset me a little bit, I think, because it just wasn’t true, and it was a personal thing. It wasn’t work-related; it wasn’t a game or something that would affect the outcome of a game or strategy. It was personal, and it was simply not true.”
The Baltimore Sun reported in December that multiple former and current coaches “agreed that Harbaugh and DeCosta aren’t close.” In November, CBS Sports’ Jason La Canfora said of Harbaugh and DeCosta, “I don’t know that anybody in that organization would look at that and say, ‘Yeah, that’s going to work for five or 10 years.’”
DeCosta, who previously served as the assistant GM, said Wednesday that Harbaugh “is the only coach I want to work with.” After rumors he could be let go, Harbaugh signed a four-year extension with the Ravens last week.
The duo has worked together since 2008, and while DeCosta admitted they haven’t always seen eye-to-eye, especially on player evaluation, he believes the reports of their poor relationship were untrue.
“I think what I’ve learned over the years … is it’s healthy to have disagreements or to see things differently,” DeCosta said. “You have to make the best decision for the organization, and you do that by talking about things, not running from them, not closing your door. You talk about these things. You confront the issue.”