PFF ranks Ravens’ Marlon Humphrey, Marcus Peters among top 25 cornerbacks

The folks over at Pro Football Focus think highly of the Ravens’ cornerback tandem of Marlon Humphrey and Marcus Peters, who fall in the top 25 for 2020.

One could make the argument the Baltimore Ravens have the best cornerbacking duo in the NFL entering 2020, namely looking at their elite first-team All-Pro boundary tandem of Marlon Humphrey and Marcus Peters.

Well, if Baltimore isn’t No. 1 in this particular category, it better be right towards the very top.

As far as individual rankings entering the upcoming season go, Pro Football Focus certainly looked at both Humphrey and Peters as two of the most elite corners out there in their recently published list of the top 25 cornerbacks entering 2020.

While Humphrey and Peters didn’t land within the top five, they did make it to Nos. 8 and 9, respectively. Only the Los Angeles Chargers had two corners within in the top 10, too, so perhaps the argument of the Ravens owning the best cornerback tandem this year should be compared solely with L.A.’s defensive backfield.

PFF’s glowing reviews of Humphrey shouldn’t shock anyone:

Over the last three seasons in single coverage, only [New England Patriots’ Stephon] Gilmore has a higher PFF grade than Humphrey’s 91.8, and Humphrey has allowed a better completion rate (39.4%) and passer rating (59.6) on those targets. In zone coverage, he slips a little behind other players, but his ability to play sticky man coverage is truly elite.

And the same goes for Peters, too:

Marcus Peters is, in some ways, the opposite skill set from his teammate in Baltimore, Marlon Humphrey. While Humphrey excels in man coverage, Peters is at his best when he can keep his eyes on the quarterback and make plays on the football. Peters is tied for the league lead in interceptions with 13 over the last three years, and his numbers were markedly better in Baltimore than they were with the Rams.

True, Humphrey and Peters are different players in a number of regards. And perhaps the only substantial argument between the two is which one serves the Ravens’ needs better. That’s always up for debate, and it’s a fun argument to have.

Especially considering how much it benefits Baltimore.

More importantly, though, the elite tandem of Humphrey and Peters affords the Ravens the ability to change up their front-seven pass rush, utilizing blitzes and schemed pressure to get after opponents’ quarterbacks. If either Peters or Humphrey were liabilities in coverage, this approach wouldn’t be anywhere near as effective.

Thankfully, considering how well both corners are at shutting down opposing pass-catchers, Baltimore is able to successfully deploy this defensive system.

As far as PFF’s cornerbacks who beat out Humphrey and Peters, here you go:

  1. Stephon Gilmore, New England Patriots
  2. Richard Sherman, San Francisco 49ers
  3. Casey Hayward Jr., Los Angeles Chargers
  4. Jalen Ramsey, Los Angeles Rams
  5. Marshon Lattimore, New Orleans Saints
  6. Chris Harris Jr., Los Angeles Chargers
  7. Byron Jones, Miami Dolphins

It’s certainly hard to argue against Gilmore being No. 1, although it’s fair to say either Humphrey or Peters could be moved up against some of the names between the second and seventh placement on the list.

Next: Projecting 3 surprise stars for the Ravens in Week 1

Regardless, it’s comforting knowing Baltimore has one of the best tandems in the league, represented by two top-10 corners in the game right now.