3 things the Baltimore Ravens are banking on this year
2. Matt Judon will pick up production:
When Za’Darius Smith went to the Green Bay Packers his production shot up because he was in the perfect situation. Smith went from almost nine sacks for the Ravens to 13.5 sacks for the Packers. The Ravens are hoping that Matt Judon can capitalize on the improved defensive front and have those kind of numbers as a sack artist.
The situation changed drastically for Judon. He is now playing on the franchise tag with millions of reasons to show up in a big way. The Ravens will get a hungry Judon with a better defensive line to work with. The Ravens are hoping that making their defensive line a double team block vending machine will allow Judon to become one of the leading NFL pass rushers. Calais Campbell creates double team blocks. Brandon Williams has always been able to take up blockers and Derek Wolfe is a handful himself. They can’t double team block everybody and that favors the outside linebackers.
It’s hard to bet against the logic of the Ravens. For starters, this was the much more practical way of going about their need of pass rush. Yes, the Ravens are quite invested in their defensive linemen, however it’s better than putting all their eggs in one edge rushing basket and potentially losing Judon in the process. This wasn’t the obvious decision for the Ravens, however it was the path that makes the most sense.
The Ravens are banking on the defensive front being elite. They filled the inside linebacker void in the 2020 NFL Draft. They improved the defensive line in free agency and the draft. They are doing this to maximize what they get out of their lofty franchise tag commitment to Judon. If the Ravens get just a bit of improvement from Jaylon Ferguson and Tyus Bowser, their bet will likely pay off and be a huge win.