Tyler Linderbaum pick looks even better as PFF tabs Ravens star an elite center

Linderbaum is slowly becoming a top player at his position.
Miami Dolphins v Baltimore Ravens
Miami Dolphins v Baltimore Ravens / Michael Owens/GettyImages

With the recent retirement of Jason Kelce, the title of best center in the NFL is officially up for grabs. Even though he has only been in the league for two years, Baltimore Ravens center Tyler Linderbaum has been so impressive that he deserves a shot at this title.

Linderbaum falling to No. 25 overall was considered a noteworthy slide, which should say a lot for a center prospect. After two solid seasons in the pros, Linderbaum was named a Pro Bowler and made a legitimate push for an All-Pro team. Lamar Jackson won his second MVP with Linderbaum snapping him the ball all season long.

Linderbaum's rise to the top of the AFC's interior offensive line rankings has put him in elite company. On a Ravens team with an underperforming offensive line, Linderbaum remains one of the best in the business.

Pro Football Focus ranked Linderbaum as the third-best center in the entire league, trailing only Kansas City's Creed Humphrey and Detroit's Frank Ragnow (who was Second-Team All-Pro behind Kelce last season). It should surprise no one if Linderbaum eventually overtakes them.

PFF names Ravens' Tyler Linderbaum third-best center in NFL

Linderbaum's 78.3 grade from PFF, four penalties, and zero sacks allowed are all evidence of his elite status. The fact he ascended to such a rarified tier just two years into his pro career makes the more than 20 teams that passed on him in the draft even more foolish.

PFF seems to love what the Ravens have put together. Not only is the reigning MVP in Jackson ranked as the second-best quarterback in the NFL behind Patrick Mahomes, but Derrick Henry was also named the second-best running back in the game. On defense, both Roquan Smith and Kyle Hamilton were named the second-best linebacker and safety, respectively, in the game.

The Ravens' offensive line needs an elite season from Linderbaum if they want any hope of being an above-average unit, as only he and left tackle Ronnie Stanley are locked into a starting spot. Both guard spots next to Linderbaum are wide open, making his performance even more important for Baltimore's success.

The Ravens have some of their big stars in Jackson and Smith locked up, but the front office needs to plan extensions for both Hamilton and Linderbaum. Much like his fellow 2022 draftee, Linderbaum has been so impressive that there is a chance he will reset the market at his position.