At the conclusion of the 2021 NFL season, the Baltimore Ravens boasted talent at edge rusher. However, there was a problem where nearly all of the playmakers at the position were in the last year of their deal and waiting to get paid. By the end of free agency madness, Baltimore lost both Matthew Judon and Yannick Ngakoue. Baltimore addressed the losses within the first round of the 2021 NFL Draft, selecting Odafe Oweh from Penn. State, but according to Pro Football Focus, that’s not enough to crack the Top 32 edge defenders heading into the season.
Frustratingly, both Judon and Ngkakoue did make the list.
24. Yannick Ngakoue, Las Vegas Raiders
Ngakoue should give some new life to the pass rush under first-year defensive coordinator Gus Bradley. He has recorded at least 42 pressures in each of his first five NFL seasons, with pass-rushing grades of 74.5 or higher in each of the past four years. Ngakoue just hasn’t quite gotten back to the dominance he flashed in 2017 as a pass-rusher, nor has he graded above 60.0 in any season against the run.
31. Matthew Judon, New England Patriots
The addition of Judon was just one piece of the puzzle to a revamped front seven in New England this offseason — a transformation that was overshadowed by some of the big moves on offense. Judon is coming off four seasons of steady contribution in Baltimore, grading between 66.0 and 69.2 on at least 600 defensive snaps in every season since 2017
Hopeful fans have implored the Ravens to sign a few names for edge rushers, including Melvin Ingram III, who is ranked No. 25 on this list.
25. Melvin Ingram III, Free Agent
Ingram is the most impactful free agent edge rusher still on the market following several seasons limited by injury in Los Angeles. Don’t be fooled by the goose egg in the sack column last season, though. Ingram still put up pass-rushing grades above 75.0 in each of the past two years and has plenty to offer teams as a pass-rusher. Teams such as the Miami Dolphins and Kansas City Chiefs — neither of whom have representatives on this list — should have interest.
The upcoming season will be a significant test for the teams’ pass rush. If Oweh’s potential hits early, he could make the top of this list next season. However, if he needs time to grow—which many rookies do— the Ravens could find themselves really struggling to take down the quarterback in 2021.