Ravens Training Camp Profile: Linebacker, Tyus Bowser
2018 will be a big season for second-year man Tyus Bowser. But the one question on everyone’s mind is, “Where will he start on the defense?”
Tyus Bowser’s rookie season was, for lack of a better term, underwhelming. Don’t get me wrong, the flashes he showed were impressive, but more often than not it felt like he couldn’t find enough consistency in his game to be an impact player on every down.
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After being drafted in the second round of the 2017 NFL Draft, it’s fair to say that expectations were high for the former University of Houston Cougar. Instead, Bowser managed just 11 tackles and 3.0 sacks in 16 games. Disappointing is an understatement.
A large part of that has to do with placement, however. Tyus Bowser is a fantastic chess piece that can be moved all around the board, but he doesn’t have a set position, at least not yet. Between solid starters at edge rusher in Terrell Suggs and Matt Judon, finding a steady spot in the rotation will be hard to come by. Not only this, but Za’Darius Smith also plans to have a breakout in 2018. One also has to think that fellow 2017 draft choice Tim Williams will be competing for reps at outside linebacker.
But Tyus Bowser has one advantage over the rest of these men. And it’s a big one.
Versatility is key:
Obviously, Tyus Bowser was drafted to be an outside linebacker, but there’s no value in trying to pigeonhole him. During his time at the University of Houston, Bowser played some college basketball. Why is this important? Because Bowser played a lot of coverage in that sport and has become more comfortable with dropping into coverage than most outside linebackers.
With that in mind, perhaps a move inside could raise the value Bowser has for this Baltimore Ravens defense. The Ravens are in need of a strong presence next to C.J. Mosley inside and Bowser could fit that bill. The pass rushing ferocity that he could bring up the middle is a game changer, but his skill set in coverage also makes this idea even more appealing.
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The most important thing the Ravens can do with Bowser is to make him as comfortable as possible. Allowing Bowser to slide around the defense and make an impact will benefit the team in ways we haven’t seen in quite some time.
This upcoming training camp is going to be extremely important for Bowser, maybe more so than most of the guys on this team. Bowser isn’t trying out for a roster spot, as he should be as safe as it gets to make the final cut. What Bowser is trying out for is multiple positions on the defense. The more he can show off in camp, the better the chances are of him seeing the field in 2018. And when Tyus Bowser is on the field, everybody wins.