The Baltimore Ravens lead the league in quality role players
The Baltimore Ravens lead the NFL in quality role players. It’s an underrated part of what makes them contenders:
The Baltimore Ravens have more superstar talent than they have ever had. The Ravens had 12 players voted into the NFL Pro Bowl last season and Orlando Brown Jr. played in the all-star game as an alternate. Superstars are good to have but quality role players are an underrated part of the roster’s build.
A great example of a role player is Nick Boyle. He’s not a superstar and until the 2019 season he hadn’t scored a touchdown. Boyle gets a lot of time on the field and is considered one of the best blocking tight ends in the NFL. That’s what a role player is, a needed part of the team that doesn’t steal the show and does what ever the team needs.
On offense the Ravens have a few quality role players. Pat Ricard is a good fullback who can also play on the defensive line. Willie Snead is exactly what you should think of when you think about a role player. He’s not the number one receiver but he’s had a career with three seasons with over 60 receptions and at least 600 yards. He picks up 10 or 12 yards at a time and earns a lot of respect in the process.
Chris Moore doesn’t do much on offense. He does however do a lot of things on special teams. He is a high effort player who does the less glamorous jobs.
It’s hard to count offensive linemen as role players because the starters basically never get a play off. They do the dirty work in the trenches and they do it the entire game. The problem is that players like Ronnie Stanley and Orlando Brown Jr. get all of the attention.
More from Ebony Bird
- Will Baltimore Ravens be rewarded for risky Lamar Jackson decision?
- The Baltimore Ravens Big Gamble
- Ravens Super Bowl odds present fascinating insight on Lamar Jackson’s future
- Should Baltimore Ravens be interested in this recently released WR
- Do the Baltimore Ravens have serious interest in this free agent wide out?
Bradley Bozeman and Matt Skura deserve some appreciation. Patrick Mekari is a player who does qualify as a role player (at least he did last year). Mekari was a backup center who replaced Skura quite impressively.
Defensively the Ravens have a handful of role players. Jihad Ward and Justin Ellis aren’t Matt Judon or Brandon Williams like players. They are however good rotational pieces on the defensive line. Justin Madubuike could work his way into the rotation as well. Depth on the defensive line will help keep the defense fresh even in the most difficult of battles.
The Ravens just drafted Patrick Queen and Malik Harrison. These players will do a lot of the work at inside linebacker yet you can’t forget about L.J. Fort. He brings veteran savvy and quality play to the middle of the Ravens defense. He’s never going to be C.J. Mosley and he’s not supposed to be the star of the bunch in 2020. That doesn’t mean he doesn’t serve a purpose for this defense.
It’s hard to believe that Jimmy Smith has become a role player. Even last season, Smith was crucially important to the secondary. When the Ravens traded for Marcus Peters he became the third corner of a team that has the best cornerback duo in the NFL. Anthony Levine has been with the Ravens since 2012. He’s done just about everything for the Ravens over the years.
The Bottom Line:
The Ravens may be the best home for the hard working role player. Nick Boyle gets more respect and appreciation from Baltimore than he would anywhere else as a blocking tight end. Blocking tight ends aren’t as important for some teams, in Baltimore they are crucial. Ricard may be the most beloved fullback in the NFL. Ravens fans absolutely love Ricard, and they should. He’s a powerful, tough and fierce fullback.
The Ravens have about as complete of a roster as you can have in the NFL. It’s not just about the superstars. They have good depth and they have a bunch of players who contribute in big ways. Every team has role players. The Ravens lead the league in both quantity and quality of theirs.