The Baltimore Ravens lost to the Pittsburgh Steelers, but the game was rather meaningless for the home team. They benched plenty of starters, and even some of the players who got the start ended up sitting before the game was over.
It was not a game to find out if Baltimore can win a Super Bowl, but it was a great chance to get a peak into some of the depth pieces who usually do not get a chance to play. Which Ravens players took advantage of the extra snaps?
3. The Baltimore Ravens saw the future with Trenton Simpson
The Baltimore Ravens rookie linebacker finally saw the field. When the Ravens drafted Trenton Simpson in the third round, the thought was that he would sit a year and then replace Patrick Queen, who is all but gone in free agency.
Simpson had gotten off to a slow start when he could not beat out Del’Shawn Phillips in the preseason to be the backup for Queen. Even on Sunday, he was the third linebacker. Patrick Queen stepped up for Roquan Smith, Del’Shawn Phillips stepped up for Queen, and then Simpson played the role that Malik Harrison would have played.
Still, he played it well. Harrison is valued on the field because he can attack downhill. Simpson had a couple of run stuff, but his biggest play was a sack where he came screaming in unblocked after solid execution.
Simpson also had a couple of sound plays in coverage, flashing an overall quality game. The Ravens really needed to see any signs of life from Simspon. To see him not only take advantage of his physical attributes but also see him thinking and passing off players in coverage shows that things are clicking. These were important snaps for the rookie.