When Baltimore Ravens defensive coordinator Chuck Pagano left to become the head coach of the Indianapolis Colts he took a hand full of Ravens with him. As it turns out, Cory Redding may have been the most irreplaceable of those players.
The Ravens run game struggled without a large versatile defensive lineman capable of setting the edge, rushing the passer and moving inside if necessary. The team tried to use a combination of players to fill his spot with Pernell McPhee, Arthur Jones and Paul Kruger. While Kruger and McPhee did have some success and Jones did a good job of stopping the run, not having one player capable of remaining on the field for each series hurt the Ravens when offenses would not allow substitutions by going "hurry up".
The additions of former Giant Chris Canty and former cowboy Marcus Spears the team once again has the versatility up front to shut down an offense without having to have a certain package on the field. Both are big bodies with long arms that are stout in the run game but can also contribute on passing downs.
Hopefully this is just the tip of the iceberg in the teams rebuilding of their defense but rebuilding from the inside out is the way to go. The Ravens already have Terrell Suggs, Pernell McPhee, Arthur Jones and Haloti Ngata up front. Add in these two behemoths and the Ravens run defense is looking better than last season already on paper.