Jason Babin signing will pay dividends for Ravens


Nov 24, 2014; Detroit, MI, USA; New York Jets outside linebacker Jason Babin (58) against the Buffalo Bills at Ford Field. Mandatory Credit: Andrew Weber-USA TODAY Sports

Terrell Suggs’ season ending injury was a devastating loss that can’t truly be compensated for at this point.  Despite John Harbaugh declaring the underwhelming Courtney Upshaw as his replacement in the lineup, rookie linebacker Za’Darius Smith should get his shot at snaps as well.

And now you can add another name to the mix – Jason Babin, formerly of the New York Jets.  The Ravens signed Babin, 35, on Tuesday to a one-year deal.  It’s a nice character fit for the team as Babin is a notoriously high effort and tenacious player.

It’s also a solid signing because Babin is a little bit underrated at this point in his career.  Despite only recording 2 sacks last season with the Jets across 470 snaps, Babin still made an impact.  He might not be the same Pro Bowl player he was in 2010 and 2011, but the numbers still show that he can make an impact.

Pro Football Focus gave Jason Babin a very good pass rush score last season (6.7) despite the low sack total.  Babin, much like one Pernell McPhee, was near the quarterback a lot but didn’t record a ton of sacks.  He did manage 7 QB hits and 27 hurries, however.

It was good enough that Babin ranked as the 9th best 3-4 outside linebacker in the NFL last season. That’s out of 46 eligible players, which is pretty darn impressive.  And interestingly enough, it’s also higher than Courtney Upshaw, who played a few more snaps (542) but wound up ranked 34th.

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In PFF’s pass rush productivity grading, Jason Babin finished even better, coming in at 7th.  Overall, he finished 17th based purely on pass rush.  And the good news is, Babin was still plenty effective against the run as well, ranking 3rd among his peers.

So while he may not be a full time player, and he most certainly won’t replace all of Suggs’ production, Jason Babin is a great fit for the Ravens.  He is also a pretty sure bet to make a nice rotational player who can make an impact on a game.  And right now, that’s exactly what the Ravens need.

Next: Coutney Upshaw won't replace Terrell Suggs

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