Matt Judon is ready for a career year. The Ravens need to bring him back:
Matt Judon came off a strong year in 2019 for the Baltimore Ravens and is very much entering the prime years of his career. When you look at the additions that the Ravens have added this season they are very outside linebacker friendly moves. All the sudden Baltimore has the best defensive line of any 3-4 defense.
That’s a big deal. Last year Judon was the only player who really won one on one match ups. I don’t think I’ve ever seen a player get held as much as Judon did without drawing the flags for it more than Judon did in 2020. Judon made an impact greater than his stats and with this defensive line in front of him, there will be more sacks by his name in the box score.
From a football perspective there is no disadvantage to bringing Judon back. The Ravens have to bring in an edge rusher one way or the other. Yes, Jadeveon Clowney is available, but Clowney and Judon are comparable in every way except name recognition. The same fans pointing out that Judon isn’t a double digit sack guy are the same people who want Clowney. Clowney has never had double digit sacks either.
The way I see it, there are very few possible scenarios in which the Ravens get a better player at the outside linebacker position than Judon. The Ravens probably can’t afford two top pass rushers at outside linebacker and they already have a good thing going with Judon.
I know I keep drilling the point home that Judon should be valued; this conversation isn’t going away until something happens. Forget about the salary cap and the potential of draft picks for a minute. From a football perspective Judon is a great fit for what the Ravens want. That’s the point.
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Imagine this. The opposing team can’t run the ball because of the sheer gap sound goodness that Calais Campbell, Brandon Williams and Michael Brockers provide. The Ravens elite secondary is frustrating the quarterback. Judon is flying off the edge with more ease than ever before. It’s what Baltimore is building. It’s a beautiful idea that will get Judon 12 sacks in 2020.
If the Ravens keep Judon under the franchise tag, they will get an incredibly motivated Judon. The talent on the defense is high, and now some of that talent deals with the battle at the line of scrimmage. He’s in a perfect situation to have a monster season. This is what monster seasons are made of. He’s got the motivation and he’s in a situation where he has to show off to get what he wants.
The fact of the matter is we’re talking about the most consistent player on the defense not named Marlon Humphrey. Judon’s numbers have been steady for three straight seasons. He’s a player who never takes a play off and has stayed relatively healthy. In Baltimore, outside linebackers get measured up to Terrell Suggs. Nobody is number 55, yet Judon is building his own legacy.
Judon is going to go off in 2020. He’s going to earn another trip to the Pro Bowl. Hopefully for the Ravens he’s going to the Super Bowl instead. If Baltimore brings back Judon, they will have a pass rusher who enters the class of elite pass rushers. It is starting to look a lot like a Super Bowl team.