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Ravens News 7/17: Locker room leaders, HC rankings and more

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NFL: Baltimore Ravens-Minicamp Evan Habeeb-USA TODAY Sports

2019 NFL head coach power rankings: Who follows Bill Belichick? - Elliot Harrison

7) John Harbaugh, Baltimore Ravens

The pundits have been keeping a steady pour of haterade on John Harbaugh over the last couple of seasons. Never mind that Harbaugh, like Andy Reid, made an extremely difficult decision at quarterback last year, switching from Joe Flacco to Lamar Jackson in a move that pushed the Ravens to the postseason for the seventh time in his 11 seasons in Baltimore. The Ravens have done plenty of damage once reaching the playoffs during the Harbaugh era, as well, going 10-6 with a Super Bowl win and two AFC Championship Game losses. Whether he can sustain such success will be dependent on the performance of Jackson, as well as how NFL defenses adjust to the dynamic quarterback the second time through the batting order, so to speak. Defensive coordinators adjust. So do players.

PFF ranks all 32 run defenses ahead of the 2019 NFL season - Michael Renner


There are few more impactful run-defending duos in the NFL than defensive tackles Brandon Williams and Michael Pierce. Williams has long since established himself as one of the league’s best nose tackles, but Pierce may have surpassed him at this point. The fourth-year defensive tackle has seen his run-defense grade improve from 81.4 as a rookie, to 87.9 in 2017, to 92.0 last season.

Top 100 players in the NFL: Aaron Donald, Patrick Mahomes fight for top spot in 2019 rankings - Jared Dubin

T-46. Earl Thomas, S, Ravens

The last image we saw of Thomas on the field was him flipping off his own sideline after the Seahawks refused to pony up for a contract extension and he then broke his leg in the fourth game of the year. Before that, he was hands down the best safety in the NFL, just like he always is. The only thing preventing him from finishing higher on this list is his age (30) and suddenly-concerning injury track record.

48. Marshal Yanda, G, Ravens

If Yanda is no longer the single best offensive lineman in all of football, it’s not because he’s slipped all that much. Set to turn 35 years old later this year, Yanda is obviously not quite at the peak of his powers anymore; but he has as good an argument as anybody not named Zack Martin for the title of the game’s best guard.

These Ravens Will Be the Locker Room Leaders - John Eisenberg

There’s Marshal Yanda, the rugged veteran guard. Coming off his seventh Pro Bowl season, he is a career Raven who sets an ideal example with his work ethic and toughness.

The organization also has been impressed by the leadership capabilities of running back Mark Ingram II, who seems quite comfortable in an out-front role.

All-Pro safety Earl Thomas has commanded the highest respect from the moment he set foot in the Under Armour Performance Center.

And he’ll have help on his side of the ball from Patrick “Peanut” Onwuasor, who has been challenged by the coaches to shoulder a larger leadership load; and also veterans such as Brandon Williams, Tony Jefferson and Brandon Carr.

Biggest Questions for Rookies Heading Into Camp - Clifton Brown

Will an undrafted rookie make the Ravens’ roster for the 16*th* straight year?

Several undrafted rookies have a chance to stick, such as defensive tackle Gerald Willis and wide receivers Sean Modster and Antoine Wesley. The wide receiver battle will be interesting to watch, because the Ravens will likely keep no more than six receivers and Snead, Brown, Boykin and Chris Moore are not going anywhere. That doesn’t leave much wiggle room for an undrafted rookie, but Modster and Wesley made plenty of plays during minicamp. They will need to continue that during training camp to have a realistic chance to stay.