The Baltimore Ravens have improved plenty heading into the 2020 season, but where have they done the most heavy lifting? Many might argue the offense, but the defense has also seen notable fixes.
In fact, the Ravens could be seen to have improved their defense in a huge way this season, especially up front. According to Albert Breer of Sports Illustrated who watched a recent practice intently, the Ravens’ strength is going to be their defensive front this coming season.
1) The Ravens' biggest jump in 2020 might come in a place that's harder to notice: The interior of the d-line. Calais Campbell, Derek Wolfe and Brandon Williams have been outstanding early on in camp.
(Remember, the Titans rushed for 217 yards on Baltimore in January.)
— Albert Breer (@AlbertBreer) August 22, 2020
Baltimore had a strong defense on the back end, but they were pushed around in the trenches last season and took steps to stop that this offseason. Folks have likely wondered how it will pay off, and the early dividends seem to look good at this point in time.
Derek Wolfe Predicts Huge Ravens Season on Defense
How good can the team’s defense be next season? Perhaps best in the NFL, and perhaps good enough to set some impressive records. Clearly, Wolfe is planning on helping the Ravens become great, and he is already planning on shutting down some of the best rushing attacks in the league.
As he explained to the media, Wolfe thinks the Ravens will end up changing the game due to their defensive line and having a huge year as a result.
New Ravens DE Derek Wolfe on teaming with Calais Campbell and Brandon Williams: "We're going to have the best defensive line in the league." Wolfe said this defense has chance to set NFL records like fewest rushing yards per carry.
— Jamison Hensley (@jamisonhensley) April 3, 2020
It’s true that the Ravens could be set to have a defense that will take over, and the big predictions might only just start rolling in for a group which should be vastly improved for this season.
Calais Campbell Cited as Ravens’ Best Newcomer
Interestingly enough, according to Adam Rank of NFL.com, Campbell is going to pay some huge dividends. Recently, Rank put together the team’s state of the franchise breakdown for 2020. When it came to the player fans must know for the new year, Calasis Campbell takes the mantle.
According to Rank, Campbell is going to come to town and make a major impact on the team due to his ability to fortify the defense and rush the passer up front.
“The rebuilding Jaguars gave the five-time Pro Bowler to the Ravens in the way that your neighbor who wants to throw away a mini-fridge insists on letting you have it for free, refusing payment and forcing you to leave a sixer of Stone IPAs on his front door as a thank you. In fact, a sixer of Stone IPAs is more than Jacksonville got for Campbell, with Baltimore sending over a fifth-round pick for one of the best dudes in football, both on and off the field. This was a confounding decision by a Jaguars team that extracted a king’s ransom for Jalen Ramsey and apparently wasn’t willing to part with Yannick Ngakoue for less than a high-end pick — and it had to steam the rest of the AFC North.
Campbell has been down this road before. Broncos fans were livid when he spurned his hometown team as a free agent to join the Jaguars in 2017. My friends down in Duval County went to the AFC Championship Game that season. The expectation should be heightened for the Ravens. With Campbell on board and Matthew Judon back to harangue quarterbacks, this Ravens defense could be even better than last season’s edition, which ranked first in the NFL from Week 7 to 17 in points allowed per game (14.2), total yards allowed per game (270.8) and opponent passer rating (71.8).
It’s worth noting, again, that Campbell seems like one of the best human beings on the planet, meaning his impact in the locker room should be immeasurable.”
More than being great on the field, Campbell is great off of it, meaning he is likely to become one of the best players on the Ravens top to bottom. It’s safe to say he is for sure the newcomer that is most interesting to fans given these variables.
Not only will Campbell help the defense, he will help the whole team. That makes him an addition worth remembering to be sure.
Ravens 2019 Defensive Statistics
Baltimore’s defense was a top group in the league this past 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 not just up front but on the back end. This offseason, the Ravens added names like Campbell, Wolfe, Patrick Queen, Malik Harrison and Geno Stone to the group which should only figure to help depth for the season.
Those additions might only keep the Ravens near the top of the league when all is said and done, and it might help them even be the best in the league. It might help their line most of all in 2020.
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