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Ravens promote Don “Wink” Martindale to defensive coordinator

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The Ravens defense has their new coach

Baltimore Ravens v Pittsburgh Steelers

With the retirement of former defensive coordinator Dean Pees, after six years at the helm, the Baltimore Ravens were in search of a new man to lead the defense. This is a defense that has blown 18 fourth quarter leads since Pees took over, and is coming off the horrendous 4th-and-12 debacle that ended their season. The pieces are there however, and Baltimore has made their decision: linebackers coach Don "Wink" Martindale will serve as the team’s next defensive coordinator.

Once Pees retired, Martindale was immediately listed among the favorites for the job, along with outside candidates such as Chuck Pagano and (hopeful) Teryl Austin.

"Wink has earned the promotion to defensive coordinator. His aggressive mentality will serve to tale our defense to new levels,” John Harbaugh said following the promotion to Martindale. “He is obviously respected by players, many of whom have already benefited from his direct coaching at the linebacker position. He knows the ins and outs of what we have been about on defense and has been an important contributor to our success on that side of the ball. This is an exciting day for Wink and his family and also one for the Ravens.”

While this move won't be popular by any means, it also shouldn't come as a shock considering this is what the Ravens do at defensive coordinator; promote from within. Rex Ryan, Mike Nolan, Chuck Pagano and Dean Pees were all promotions and continuity stays. Martindale is now the latest to follow that pattern, and players such as Eric Weddle and C.J. Mosley had high praise for their coach when this process started.

Before joining Baltimore, Martindale was previously the defensive coordinator for the Denver Broncos in 2010.