Akiem Hicks and 6 defensive linemen the Ravens could sign in free agency

Justin Fried
Ravens, Akiem Hicks Mandatory Credit: Jon Durr-USA TODAY Sports
Ravens, Akiem Hicks Mandatory Credit: Jon Durr-USA TODAY Sports /
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Ravens, Maliek Collins Mandatory Credit: Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports /

2. The Ravens could target Maliek Collins (Houston Texans)

Maliek Collins would be a safe, high-floor signing of a veteran defensive tackle who’s been around the NFL for quite a few years now. That should make him appealing to a Ravens coaching staff that values experience.

A former third-round pick, Collins spent the first four years of his career in Dallas before starting a season in Las Vegas and ending up in Houston this past season.

Despite having over 80 career starts under his belt, Collins will actually only be 27-years-old at the start of the 2021 season, so he still has plenty left in the tank.

He’s a reliable run defender who offers more pass-rush upside than most of the players on this list. Collins could be an affordable veteran target for the Ravens this offseason.

1. The Ravens could target Akiem Hicks (Chicago Bears)

The cream of the crop when it comes to free-agent defensive linemen this offseason is undoubtedly Akiem Hicks. Even at 32-years-old, Hicks is still playing at a high level.

The former Pro Bowler battled a nagging groin injury in 2021 but was still very effective when on the field. There’s a reason Pro Football Focus ranked him as the No. 1 interior defensive lineman on the open market this offseason and the No. 18 overall free agent.

Hicks makes even more sense for the Ravens if Calais Campbell retires where he would be able to fill Campbell’s veteran role on the defensive line.

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Either way, however, if the Ravens want to make a decent-sized splash in free agency, bringing in Akiem Hicks to help bolster their defensive line would be a good way to do it.