Despite the opinion of some NFL sportswriters that our defensive line is a team weakness, there is confidence in thisdeep group of young players on the defensive side of the trenches. Starters Brandon Williams and Timmy Jernigan are the most proven of the youngsters, paired with veteran Chris Canty and a host of unproven depth players. They fall into 2 categories- solid depth, but unproven in more than light rotational snaps: DeAngelo Tyson, Lawrence Guy, and Christian Bilukidi; and haven't seen the field yet: rookie Carl Davis, 2nd year Brent Urban, 3rd year Kapron Lewis-Moore, and Casey Walker.
Brent Urban and Kapron Lewis-Moore both were looking promising in camps last season before suffering season ending injuries, preventing the team from putting on the field as deep and talented a group as they had hoped for. This increased the impact of in-season injuries to Timmy Jernigan and Chris Canty, and the suspension of Haloti Ngata. However, players like Bilukidi, Tyson, and Guy all stepped up to provide solid depth behind anchor Brandon Williams and the recently departed Haloti Ngata.
A fourth-round draft pick from Virginia, Urban tore the anterior cruciate ligament in his right knee in late July 2014. He was expected to challenge Chris Canty for playing time at the 5-technique before the injury. Urban underwent surgery to repair the damage. The 6-foot-6, 298-pound lineman also tore his anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee as a redshirt freshman in college, and underwent ankle surgery in February 2014 after aggravating a pre-existing injury during the Senior Bowl all-star game.
Lewis-Moore tore his left Achilles tendon during 11-on-11 drills with the 49ers last August. He dropped in the draft after tearing his anteror cruciate ligament during the BCS national title game while playing for Notre Dame. The Ravens drafted Lewis-Moore in the 6th round knowing he was likely sidelined for his entire rookie season, but hoping he could return to his previous form following his recovery. He was projected to go in the 2nd or 3rd round before the injury.
To this point, Urban and Lewis-Moore have made significant progress, and coach John Harbaugh predicts they will likely be completely ready to go for OTA's. However, they now face increased competition for roster spots and playing time with more experienced players like Guy and Tyson around. However, these 2 have higher upside than the rest of the field, so the Ravens are hoping for a high level of play from both of them in order to provide quality depth behind the starter. For Urban there is likely a chance of beating out Canty and Davis for a starting spot, but for Lewis-Moore this might be his last shot at making our roster.
Looking forward to seeing what they can do out there!