Though a game has yet to be played by the current Ravens roster, there are clearly strengths and weaknesses on paper. By the end of the season, the inverse may occur, but for right now, we see an identity of sorts when charting the 53-man roster; this leads to our question of the day.
What is the Raven’s roster’s greatest strength?
The secondary. While the tight end unit, running back room and two starting tackles all appear impressive when stacked against the rest of the league, the secondary stands supreme. Three cornerbacks with star ability followed up with impressive depth boast enough as is. Now, add in a solid strong safety paired with none other than Earl Thomas III. This crew is ready to smother receivers and force frustrations on the field and sidelines. Soon enough, we’ll watch as opposing quarterbacks panic, progressing through each read until Michael Pierce, Willie Henry and Matt Judon grind past their blockers for a coverage sack.
As mentioned, Jimmy Smith, Marlon Humphrey and Tavon Young all rank near the top of the league in their respective roles. Both Smith and Humphrey dominate on the outside. They’re both capable of stonewalling just about any wideout in the league. Meanwhile, Baltimore boasts one of the top slot cornerbacks in the NFL with their recent contract extension with Tavon Young.
It’s not like these are the only names on the roster, either. Quality depth is important and Eric DeCosta knows this.
Brandon Carr is right behind Smith, Humphrey and Young on the depth chart, boasting both impressive play and also the second longest start-streak among current NFL players (176 games). He’s a perfect CB2, yet on this roster he’s fighting for playing time due to such a strong cast. After Carr, follows Maurice Canady, Anthony Averett, Justin Bethel, Stanley Jean-Baptiste, Bennett Jackson, Cyrus Jones and Iman Marshall. There’s such an overcrowded group, all 31 other NFL teams will patiently wait to see which of these names they can land on waivers.
The starters are among the elite. The depth is top-tier quality. The lowest on the depth chart even hosts impressive potential. To me, it’s clear. The Baltimore Ravens secondary is the roster’s greatest strength.