06-27-2013, 12:51 AM #1
Newest Acquisitions (Defense) FA and Draft
Chris Canty - Never read a single article on him but had seen his play and was always impressed. Upon his arrival I've read all I could regarding his time with the Ravens. His comments about Brandon Williams shows me he is happy to be here, impressed with the youngster, and looking forward to being a key component in leading this team in the future!
Elvis Dumervil - His reaction to being questioned about being paired up with Suggs, was a simple smile.... That shows a confidence and a hint of expectancy from him for a great year forward! (Glad Kruger had the year he did, that allowed us to watch him walk away and get the STEAL of the off-season!)
Michael Huff - I wanted this guy when he hit the draft years ago!!! Coming to the Ravens from the abyss of the silver and black.... He will once again thrive with the Ravens defensive mentality. Being paired with Matt Elam will be a bonus for us this season and beyond! Speed Speed Speed!
Matt Elam - I wanted Cyprian in the draft because he reminded me so much of Reed! After watching highlights and the most recent articles of his play in OTA's, I'm pleased with him being a part of this new speed infused defense! And the hits will be powerful!!
Marcus Spears - I hate the Cowboys, and their players. But for one to come to us in the hopes of winning hardware and playing for a team that plays hard and is a tight group.... I'm welcome to their addition! From what I've read he feels reborn and looks forward to his time with the Ravens.... another good addition!
Arthur Brown - Time will tell on him. His college career landed him high on our draft and he will be filling the role of the ultimate competitor! Getting the chance to watch him in the Big 12 last year after WVU moved into the conference, I'm happy to have his previous efforts now labeled as a Raven and look forward to what he can do for us in the future!
John Simon - A work horse deserving of being the namesake of Urban Meyer's future son (if occurs).... Guy has a motor and work ethic of a Raven. Time will tell on this guy but I'm hopeful the comparisons come to fruition!
And as an added bonus.... Jimmy Smith is back and healthy! Hopefully we will have the chance to see how bright his star can shine with an uninjured season....... with the addition of Webb back on the attack!
I seriously hope the losses of our past blaze the path towards our future! A new and refined defense to come together, and settle in for another push to multiple runs for the NFL Championship!
06-27-2013, 06:45 AM #2HOF 24x7 Raven
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Re: Newest Acquisitions (Defense) FA and Draft
Here's an article on Canty :
06-27-2013, 07:51 AM #3
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Re: Newest Acquisitions (Defense) FA and Draft
Looking at it unit groupwise...
DL - We really missed Redding and McKinney last year. Don't get me wrong, Art Jones is one of my favorite Ravens and I think he'll be a nice piece at DE. And Haloti Ngata, while slowed by age and injuries, is still a tough SOB who commands respect. But we had nothing in the tank for rotational players. Pernell McPhee is currently making a transition to OLB. I can't recall a single play from DE by guys not named Ngata or Jones. DeAngelo Tyson is a decent player, but this is also a 7th round pick. He's okay depth, but we can't expect him to be a playmaker. And then there's Mount Cody. Truly a mountain made of jello. The guy was drafted to be an unmoveable mountain. Instead, he's like a bundle of straw. Easily moved, easily pushed, detrimental almost in the run game.
Bringing in Canty and Spears does two big things...#1 - Builds our DL rotation. You could have Ngata, Canty, Spears, Jones out at any time. Spears is maybe the weakest of the bunch, and he's a lot better than most 2nd string DEs. Ngata may be playing some NT too, but you also figure in that, you've got Tyson and, down the road, Kapron Lewis-Moore could also figure into that rotation. #2 - Canty and to a lesser extent Spears brings veteran leadership to a locker room that just lost a lot of it.
The BIGGEST addition to the DL in my eyes, and by his arm size, is Brandon Williams. Early returns on Williams indicate, besides the fact that his monstrous arms are made out of muscle and not feathers, that he's going to be a FORCE on the DL at NT. I have a feeling in a year or two, we won't even be thinking about Ngata primarily playing at NT, because Williams will be too good there to swap out.
LB - Adding Dumervil was the coup of the offseason, followed close second by being able to draft Elam and Brown. Another veteran leader, and probably in the argument for top OLB tandem we've ever add, fighting Boulware and Suggs in 2003. The benchmark there is 20.5 sacks, which is what Suggs and Boulware combined for in 2003. It'll be interesting to see how Pees uses both of them. Fans have always gone after Pees, believing him to be in the mold of Greg "3-man Vanilla Pass Rush" Mattison. Players have said that Pees blitzes as much/well as Pagano did. Having those two will be interesting to see if our pass rush goes through the roof, or remains middling to below average. Like gravy on top of the potatoes, getting Simon could really prove to be a great long term steal. He's being compared a lot to JJ, in terms of his blue collar attitude, his low draft status, and his tremendous motor. Oh yeah, and the guy once reportedly did 48 reps in the bench press.
At ILB, it's going to be easy to point out Brown and his potential. One move that really could prove to be HUGE is Darryl Smith. Already turning a lot of heads at minicamps, the veteran is moving well and providing strong leadership on the field, calling out the defensive signals. I have a lot of love for Jameel McClain as a person, but a lot of us remember as a player, he left some to be desired. If Smith can play well in camp and preseason, we could easily let McClain keep rehabbing while starting Smith and Brown/McClellan/Bynes at ILB. That's a pretty decent looking group compared to what we thought we'd have pre-draft.
Secondary - Huff and Elam are great pickups. Many have focused on comparing Huff to Pollard and Elam to Reed, or vice versa. And individually...I'll admit, neither of those are upgrades. But looking at the bigger picture, we add a lot more range with Huff and Elam than we do with Pollard and Reed. Ed Reed, as we see now, is being hampered by more little nick type injuries. Pollard, say what you will about his character vs coaches, was basically just a thumper, and got exposed a bit in the playoffs when having to cover receivers (WR, RB, TE even) downfield. Huff and Elam are both guys who can flip between either spot. Elam needs to be coached a bit to avoid the same headhunting type penalties that got Pollard into some trouble, but his youth can be a plus there, as he's still going to be learning from out vets and easier to set on a different path than Pollard, a long time vet who is admittedly set in his ways.
This D will have some growing pains. Anything you shake it up as much as they have (Lost 3 starters in secondary, 3 heavily used players at LB, and trying to revamp the DL by adding 3 new players to the rotation), you have to expect that guys will need to learn to communicate with each other on the job a bit, which might lead to some rough spots early. But, as they grow together and start gelling, we could see a very strong defense down the stretch as guys grow comfortable in their spots as a unit..
“When I think of a Baltimore Raven - we go in there, we take your lunch box, we take your sandwich, we take your juice box, we take your applesauce, and we take your spork and we break it. And we leave you with an empty lunch. That’s the Baltimore Raven way.” - Steve Smith Sr.
Call me a Special Teams coach again. I dare you! I double dare you, MFer!