Ranking top 15 players on Baltimore Ravens defense

Scott Taetsch/GettyImages
6 of 15

10. Michael Pierce, NT

It is easy for fans to overlook what Michael Pierce is doing because this defense has so many sack-makers and turnover-takers. However, Pierce is one of the key units upfront on this defense that makes it all happen. 

Pierce is 31 and playing some of the best football of his career. It is impressive because he has 472 snaps. In the last three seasons combined, Pierce has played 342 snaps.  He has never played more than 56% of the snaps in a single season, and yet this year, Pierce is on track to play 58% of the snaps for the Ravens. He is having an underrated year as a run stuffer, but he is surprisingly doing a lot as a pass rusher. 

Pierce has 26 pressures this year, per PFF, which is already a career-high. Still, it is his presence as a run defender that forces teams to avoid him. He makes them run away from him and keeps both of the linebackers clear. Pierce making life easier for Queen gets him ahead of Queen. The big man needs his respect as well.