Ravens vs. Browns: The team with the edge at each position
Looking at the defensive positions:
Defensive Line: It’s a tie
The Browns defensive line is good. If they have an argument on any defensive area it would be this one. Myles Garrett is a beast and having Olivier Vernon on the other side makes a great combination at defensive end. Larry Ogunjobi is the may be one of the most underrated defensive linemen in football. Sheldon Richardson at defensive tackle is another boost for this unit. This is one of the best defensive line units in the NFL.
The Browns run a 4-3 so it is different than the Ravens three man defensive line. This position group is a tie. Calais Campbell is arguably just as big of a defensive star as Garrett. Derek Wolfe and Brandon Williams are very good. The Ravens have a ton of talent, most of it being of the young variety behind their starters. When it’s been close I’ve leaned on star power to break the tie. That’s what I did at running back and at tight end. Here it’s even when it comes to that.
This one isn’t close. The Ravens outside linebackers aren’t a bad group at all. Matt Judon is playing on the franchise tag while Pernell McPhee, Tyus Bowser and Jaylon Ferguson are all going to make an impact. L.J. Fort is solid at inside linebacker. Patrick Queen may be a rookie but on day one he’s the biggest star at linebacker between these two teams. With Mack Wilson being injured and the linebacker spot being a concern for the Browns in general, give me the Ravens big in this category.
Come on, was this even up for discussion. The Ravens have two Pro Bowl caliber cornerbacks, the most underrated cornerback in the league (Jimmy Smith) and a great slot corner in Tavon Young. They can match up with anybody and they can move their defensive backs around like chess pieces.
Denzel Ward is pretty good and we’ll see about Greedy Williams. For now, we’re not even entertaining this. The Ravens cornerbacks are way better.
Now that Earl Thomas is gone and Grant Delpit is out for his entire rookie season, these two teams may not think that safety is their biggest strength. The Ravens have to wait and see with DeShon Elliott being the starting free safety. That being said, the Ravens are confident in Elliott and they know they have a rising star in Chuck Clark. That gives Baltimore the edge here.
Special Teams: Ravens
I’m not going to pretend I have the name of the Browns’ long snapper in my memory, yet I have the utmost confidence in Morgan Cox, Justin Tucker and Sam Koch. Give me the Ravens here.