The Baltimore Ravens have been hard at work reshaping their roster ahead of the 2020 season, and have made multiple big moves already. But how is that going for the team? Quite well according to Pro Football Focus.
Recently, writer Anthony Treash put together an analysis of how every team did in free agency. According to him, the haul of the Ravens is above average to this point, and is solid, especially on defense where the heaviest lifting has been done.
Here’s what Treash wrote:
“The fact that Baltimore traded only a fifth-round pick for the second-most valuable defensive lineman over the past four seasons in Calais Campbell is pretty remarkable. Yes, he’s going to turn 34 years old before the season starts, but the man is a game-wrecker compared to his counterparts. Campbell has produced a PFF overall grade that has ranked sixth or better among all defensive linemen in each of the past four seasons. He has plenty of gas in the tank.
Michael Brockers has been a solid run defender throughout his career but a pretty subpar pass-rusher playing alongside the league’s most dominant interior defensive lineman in Aaron Donald. In his eight-year career, Brockers has never cracked the top 40 in pass-rush grade. As for tagging Matthew Judon, it’s a good move if the Ravens trade him away. Judon had a career year like Dante Fowler Jr. above but saw most of his production handed to him, as he owned the highest rate of cleanup/unblocked pressures.”
A Judon trade could certainly be the next order of business, but for now, the Ravens will be content to maintain what is one of the better defensive lines in football.
Ravens Credited For Offseason Defense Moves
Another Pro Football Focus contributor Gordon McGuinness recently tweeted about the approach the Ravens have with Eric DeCosta building his team, and lauded the fact that Baltimore seems to be building around players who are solid and stout on the back end and know the team’s scheme incredibly well. As he says, that’s how a defense should be constructed.
The Ravens recently re-signed Jimmy Smith, which was a huge move in order to keep a group together which has been very solid. That’s in addition to what they already have on the roster and what they will get back in 2020.
Ravens 2019 Defensive Statistics
Baltimore’s defense was a top group in the league this season. They were rated the No. 3 defense in terms of total yards allowed (300.6), the No. 6 defense in terms of passing yards per-game (207.2), and the 5th ranked rush defense in the league with 93.4 yards per-game.
A key point? Baltimore also piled up 37 sacks on the season, with Matt Judon accounting for 9.5 in 2019. Obviously, the defense is solid as a whole and has plenty to like moving forward, but the team would have to find a suitable replacement for Judon somewhere considering his overall talent if he were to leave. That’s been rumored so far this offseason. In terms of the defensive backfield, the Ravens collected 13 total picks last season which was a solid number.
It’s nice to see the team building around some solid defensive backs. No matter what happens up front with new additions like Michael Brockers and Calais Campbell, the Ravens continue to remain committed to having one of the best secondaries in football.
Building things from the back end out continues to benefit the team and is a great plan moving forward.
Ravens Offseason Needs
The Ravens are seemingly in a decent spot in terms of both sides of the ball thanks to the fact that they have a young roster, but there’s little question that the team needs to make a few well placed additions, especially on offense, as Eric DeCosta hints. Baltimore could still use another receiving threat to help Lamar Jackson, and depending on what happens with some of the team’s own free agents, another linebacker could be on the docket as well, though that position could get filled in the NFL Draft.
Baltimore shouldn’t need many more dramatic moves after what they have already done, but should continue to lock up their own talent while looking to make a few well-placed additions to the mix.
Continuing to add defensive backs and keep the right players in house could be a huge benefit to the team moving forward that helps them continue to cultivate a championship roster. So far, that’s been the move for the Ravens this offseason.
That work has been above average according to Pro Football Focus.
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