Ravens’ defense touted to spring back to top-10 form

Ravens (Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images)
Ravens (Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images) /

The Baltimore Ravens have been known for fielding a top-10 defense in recent history, but the 2021 season was an anomaly.

The Ravens ranked 19th overall in the league in total defense last year largely due to an injury plague that saw elite starters like Marlon Humphrey and Marcus Peters miss the entire season.

Now, with Humphrey and Peters back in the lineup, along with several offseason additions, Baltimore’s defense could soar back into top-10 form. In the three seasons prior to 2021, the Ravens boasted a defense that was ranked in the top 10 of the league (and top five in two of those seasons).

Going from No. 19 to No. 10 would be a difficult feat for any team, but the Ravens seem prepared to make the leap in this upcoming comeback season.

CBS Sports’ Jared Dubin named the Ravens’ defensive unit as “somewhat likely” to crack the top-10 in 2022:

"“Baltimore’s defense collapsed due to injury last season, but there were some strong underlying metrics that point to a rebound. The Ravens finished third in yards allowed per play and eighth in the share of opponent drives that ended in a score, for example. With better health, plus Marcus Williams and Kyle Hamilton on board, they should be back in or around the top 10.”"

Baltimore Ravens have a good chance at building a top-10 defense in 2022

The teams most likely to field a top-10 defense were the Buffalo Bills, Los Angeles Rams, and New Orleans Saints, each of whom has dominated on the defensive side of the ball in recent years.

But the Ravens notably snatched up former Saints safety Marcus Williams in free agency and drafted unicorn talent Kyle Hamilton as well. Those two additions alone should at least move the Ravens up into top-15 territory.

In truth, Baltimore would be wise to add a veteran corner before the start of the season in the event Humphrey or Peters misses time, but right now, the team’s defense is stacked with high-level tacklers and an incredible amount of young upside.

The team signed two more defenders in the past week, defensive lineman Brent Urban and linebacker Diego Fagot, and will continue filling out the roster with important depth or rotational pieces in 2022.

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Can the Ravens’ offense keep up with their defense this season? We sure hope so.