Ravens believe Calais Campbell will ‘strongly consider retiring’ in the offseason

Ravens, Calais Campbell Mandatory Credit: Evan Habeeb-USA TODAY Sports
Ravens, Calais Campbell Mandatory Credit: Evan Habeeb-USA TODAY Sports /

The Baltimore Ravens have enjoyed some very solid play from veteran defensive end Calais Campbell in the twilight of his storied NFL career.

But the 14-year NFL veteran could very well be finishing up that career very shortly, perhaps as soon as this season.

Jeff Zrebiec of The Athletic detailed the future of the Ravens’ defensive line in a recent article and remarked that many inside the Ravens organization believe that Campbell could retire this offseason.

"“The sense around the team is Campbell, a franchise favorite, will strongly consider retiring this offseason.”"

Campbell is set to be a free agent in the offseason and it’s far from a guarantee that the Ravens opt to bring him back, even if he doesn’t elect to retire.

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Of course, talks of a potential retirement following the 2021 season are nothing new for Campbell. He previously remarked back in June that he was undecided about his future beyond this year and would reevaluate the situation after the season ended.

Evidently, many inside the organization are preparing for him to retire. And at 35-years-old playing one of the most grueling positions in the sport, it’s easy to see why.

Campbell is a potential future Hall of Famer with 92.5 career sacks, six Pro Bowl appearances, and one first-team All-Pro selection in his near decade-and-a-half playing in the NFL.

And since joining the Ravens in 2020, he’s proven that he still has plenty left in the tank. Campbell was a Pro Bowler a year ago and is currently the second-highest graded Ravens player and fourth highest-graded interior defensive lineman in football with an 86.6 Pro Football Focus grade.

He’s undoubtedly still playing at a very high level and could realistically play another couple of years. But will his body hold up? And does he even want to?

The Ravens’ defensive line could look very different a year from now with Campbell, Brandon Williams, and Justin Ellis all set to hit the open market in the offseason. Not to mention Derek Wolfe who could be expendable with a high cap hit in 2022.

While young players like Justin Madubuike and even Broderick Washington have shown some promise, the Ravens will certainly need to address the position in the offseason.

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But that’s the future. For now, Calais Campbell will look to close out what could be his final NFL season on a high note.