Is it possible for Kruger to be underrated?
I'd go with Koch--here's a guy who does his job very, very well & very few notice it. And remember his first-down run off the fake punt vs the Cowgirls in 2008? A key element in that smackdown (with Willis & Le'Ron adding double exclamation points at the end).
Ayanbadejo is pretty good on 3rd down and I think he gets lost in the shuffle.
2011 Ravens D on 3rd Down held teams to 32% conversion good for #2 in the NFL
2010, when he was hurt and even when healthy only infrequently played at LB, Ravens were at 38% and 15th in the NFL
Obviously this isn't all about Ayanbadejo--Pagano v. Mattison, Webb and Williams v Carr and Wilson, etc. But Ayanbadejo was a big factor in the 3rd down pass defense last year.
cundiff most underated
All good cases, but I'm going to throw a vote towards Pollard. He gets lost in the shuffle of other defensive stars, but I love the physicality he brings to the secondary. His coverage ability is probably average, but he is a sure tackler and lays the lumber. I really think he brings an intimidation factor which can't be measured by stats.
The obvious choice is Joe Flacco. He catches a lot of grief from the media, but some (Jaws most recently) are starting to figure out that he's pretty damn good.
Cary Williams was a major unsung hero last year. He played stout D and even though he doesn't have the natural hands that Webb or Ed Reed have, he made some big plays by deflecting the ball and/or jarring it loose as soon as it got to the receiver. He breaks on the receivers very well. He's also a hell of a tackler for a cornerback.
I think Jameel McClain is pretty underrated as well. He's playing beside the best MLB to ever play the game, so the comparisons are sometimes extremely unfair. He's also a guy who has essentially transitioned between 3 different positions (DE in college, to OLB/DE here, to ILB) until settling in at MLB. He'd be a starter on most defenses. He's young and he's someone who puts in the work to get better.
The dude played lights out football in 2011, and was arguably one of the best 5 techs in the game that season, his run defense was outstanding. I think overall, it was best for us that we lost him in FA, as it gives us the opportunity to see what McPhee and Arthur Jones can do as starters.