The Baltimore Ravens will officially have two big holes to fill on the edge of their defense after impending free agent outside linebacker, Yannick Ngakoue, and the Las Vegas Raiders officially agreed to terms this evening.
Former Ravens’ LB Yannick Ngakoue reached agreement on a two-year, $26 million deal with the Las Vegas Raiders, per source.— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) March 15, 2021
This deal came on the same day that the Ravens found out that they would be losing two-time Pro Bowler Matthew Judon to the New England Patriots. Now, Ngakoue will also be sticking in the conference after agree to a short term deal with an average annual salary of $13 million.
That price tag and length of contract aren’t exactly gaudy and some may wonder why the Ravens weren’t willing to match it, but there’s still time for them to do just that. Any deal agreed to now with unrestricted free agents slated to hit the open market are in principle only since the new league year doesn’t officially begin until Wednesday, March 17 at 4:00 p.m. EST.
The Ravens acquired Ngakoue via trade just before the 2020 midseason trade deadline in exchange for a pair of draft picks: a 2021 third-rounder and a conditional 2022 fifth-rounder.
Some fans view his short time as a Raven as a failed experiment since he only recorded three sacks in 12 games including the postseason. However, he was still a disruptive presence off the edge that generated consistent pressure. He also set other players up for success with the way he fanned out offensive tackles to create wider gaps to run blitzes and stunts.
If Ngakoue does indeed sign on the doted line with the Raiders, the Ravens won’t have to wait long to see him again since the two teams are slated play each other in the Las Vegas in 2021.
The Ravens must now turn their attention towards restocking their edge rusher depth chart since Jalyon Ferguson and Pernell McPhee are the only returning players currently under contract.
Trying to re-sign impending free agent Tyus Bower should be a priority and possibly Jihad Ward if he’s interested. They’ve been reportedly interested in some of the pass rushers on the open market like Carlos Dunlap but no signings are rumored to be imminent.