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Ravens News 1/25: Offseason Motivation and more

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Kansas City Chiefs v Baltimore Ravens Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images

Twelve Ravens thoughts following divisional-round weekend - Luke Jones

John Harbaugh will have plenty of candidates to replace Wink Martindale, but previous defensive coordinators stepped into situations ripe with future Hall of Famers and established Pro Bowl talent. Beyond Marlon Humphrey and Marcus Peters, there isn’t much of that under contract. The salary cap won’t be as friendly either.

Lamar Jackson should have plenty of offseason motivation watching Patrick Mahomes and Josh Allen look like the NFL’s new Brady-Manning rivalry. With those two atop the AFC as well as the impressive arrivals of Joe Burrow and Justin Herbert, this conference isn’t getting any easier to navigate.

While critics sometimes accuse Baltimore of placing too much emphasis on special teams, watching Green Bay — who finished last in special teams DVOA — self-destruct and the Bills foolishly preserve 13 seconds for Mahomes at the end of regulation reminded how critical mistakes in that phase can kill your season. Brutal.

Derek Wolfe Posts That He Underwent Hip Surgery - Clifton Brown

Ravens defensive end Derek Wolfe, who missed the entire 2021 season, gave an update on his health status Monday.

Wolfe wrote he is “on the mend” after successful hip surgery and posted a picture of his elevated leg on Twitter.

Wolfe was injured during a joint practice with the Carolina Panthers in August and began the 2021 season on injured reserve. He briefly returned to practice following the Ravens’ bye week, but never rejoined the 53-man roster and was eventually shut down for the season.

The return of a healthy Wolfe, who signed a three-year contract extension in 2020, would be a welcome boost to the defensive line rotation.

Ravens New Defensive Coordinator Will Need to Bolster Secondary - Todd Karpovich

Bengals quarterback Joe Burrow played two of his finest games against the Ravens, throwing for 941 yards with seven touchdowns in just two games this season.

Burrow is in his second year and will only get better.

Bills quarterback Josh Allen has also shown he can make big plays downfield.

The onus will be on the new Ravens defensive coordinator to shut down these types of attacks to compete in the AFC.

One interesting candidate for the new defensive coordinator is Cowboys secondary coach Joe Whitt.

This past season, Dallas led the NFL with 26 interceptions. The Cowboys also managed 41 sacks.

Dallas cornerback Trevon Diggs led the NFL with 11 interceptions.

The Ravens had just nine interceptions this past season, which ranked near the bottom of the NFL. Only the Bears, Jaguars, Jets and Raiders had fewer interceptions.

Baltimore Ravens: 3 early free agent targets for the 2022 NFL offseason - Kendall Capps

Safety Tyrann Mathieu

The Kansas City Chiefs superstar safety, Tyrann Mathieu, is set to become a free agent this offseason. The ball-hawking leader of the Chiefs defense would make a great fit with Baltimore.

Mathieu reminds me a little of longtime Ravens safety Ed Reed. Reed was more of a physical player who would make plays in the running game. But Mathieu is also always around the ball.

Mathieu is a three-time All-Pro selection, and helped the Chiefs to a Super Bowl championship two seasons ago. It would not be the easiest guy to fit under the cap, but Mathieu would be worth the investment. He is coming off another stellar season for Kansas City.

2022 NFL Free Agency Rankings: Edge Defenders

1. CHANDLER JONES

PFF Free Agency Rank: 4

2021 Snaps: 875

2021 PFF grade: 68.1 (42nd of 114)

Projected contract: 2 yrs — $16.75m avg/yr

2. VON MILLER

PFF Free Agency Rank: 5

2021 Snaps: 795

2021 PFF grade: 89.2 (8th of 114)

Projected contract: 2 yrs — $17m avg/yr

8. HAROLD LANDRY III

PFF Free Agency Rank: 33

2021 Snaps: 981

2021 PFF grade: 63.0 (68th of 114)

Projected contract: 4 yrs — $15m avg/yr

9. JUSTIN HOUSTON

PFF Free Agency Rank: 37

2021 Snaps: 577

2021 PFF grade: 78.4 (18th of 114)

Projected contract: 1 yrs — $7m avg/yr