New addition Derek Wolfe is coming off a seven sack campaign with the Denver Broncos, so what can he do in year one with the Baltimore Ravens?
Calais Campbell was the big get of the offseason for the Baltimore Ravens via trade with the Jacksonville Jaguars, followed by the Free Agency signing of Michael Brockers… or so we thought. The Brockers deal fell through following a failed physical and Baltimore sat with a new hole on their defensive line. Luckily for them, former Denver Bronco Derek Wolfe was on the market still and the Ravens wasted no time snatching him up.
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Now pegged as the starting 3-tech defensive tackle alongside the aforementioned Campbell and Brandon Williams, this defensive line looks terrifying.
Baltimore went into the 2020 offseason with the need to fill out their defensive line with guys who can stuff the run well. The Ravens gave up an average of 4.4 YPC to opposing ball carriers in 2019, something uncharacteristic of the franchise. The team paid for their run defense inefficiency in the playoffs when the Tennessee Titans and Derrick Henry ran them flat on their backs. The mission became clear: build the run defense back up and don’t let that happen again.
The right moves have been made to ensure that the run defense won’t be as leaky in 2020, but bringing in Derek Wolfe was sneakily the best move to shore it all up.
Wolfe has always been stout vs. the run and the Super Bowl 50 champion Denver Broncos can attest to that. Wolfe was instrumental during the 2015 season for the Broncos and became one of its best and most reliable defenders for a while.
Derek Wolfe is no one-trick pony, however, as he’s been a fairly effective pass rusher in his eight seasons in the league. Wolfe has amassed 33 career sacks and has four seasons with at least five-or-more sacks. Wolfe had a career-high seven sacks in 2019 in 12 games. Had his 2019 season not been cut short due to injuries he may have been able to hit the double-digits.
With all this in mind, it stands to reason that Derek Wolfe will be a huge part of what the Baltimore Ravens want to do in 2020. Wolfe is a stout run defender who is an underrated pass rusher. With guys like Calais Campbell and Matt Judon next to him, Wolfer could perhaps put up career numbers in 2020.
Derek Wolfe has never been the biggest sack artist in the league, but he collapses the pocket well and is able to make life easier for his fellow defenders. Wolfe did breakout in 2019 before injury, which has me thinking he may pick up where he left off. Don’t expect Wolfe to lead the Baltimore Ravens in sacks, but don’t be surprised if he has some decent numbers.
Derek Wolfe 2020 projected stats: 35 tackles, 5.5 sacks, one forced fumble, one fumble recovery