The Baltimore Ravens are expected to name former linebackers coach Mike Macdonald as their ninth defensive coordinator in team history, barring any last-minute changes.
“Barring a change of heart or an 11th-hour event, Michigan defensive coordinator Mike Macdonald will return to Baltimore to be the Ravens’ D.C.” Balas wrote.
The 34-year-old Macdonald joined the Ravens coaching staff in 2014 after a three year stint as an assistant defensive coach with the University of Georgia. Macdonald joined John Harbaugh’s staff under defensive coordinator Dean Pees where Macdonald started as an intern before being named a defensive assistant, then defensive backs coach before finally being named linebackers coach in 2018 where he spent three seasons. Following Baltimore’s 2020 season, Macdonald was hired by Jim Harbaugh and named the University of Michigan’s defensive coordinator.
In 2021, Macdonald’s defense finished eighth nationally in points allowed per game, allowing only 17.4. The Wolverines also 10th among Power-5 schools in yards per play allowed (4.93), ninth in offensive touchdowns allowed (28) and held all but two opponents under 30 points. Macdonald’s defense helped Michigan secure their first Big 10 championship since 2004 and defeated rival Ohio State University for the first time since 2011, paving the way for Michigan to earn their first College Football Playoff berth before ultimately losing to the Georgia Bulldogs 34-11. Macdonald’s defense held Ohio State under 30 points for the first time since 2009.
Macdonald’s defensive ends Aidan Hutchinson and David Ojabo were named to All-American teams, as Hutchinson set Michigan’s single season sack record (14) and was named a consensus All-American and Heisman Trophy runner-up. Ojabo was named a second-team All-American after setting Michigan’s single season mark for forced fumbles (5) while recording ten sacks.
Macdonald, if named, will inherit a Ravens defense that was riddled with injury in 2021. Baltimore’s defense finished 19th in points allowed (392), 32nd in yards allowed per play (6.0) and 30th in turnovers forced (15). Macdonald, if ultimately named defensive coordinator, will be tasked with ushering in a new era of the Baltimore Ravens defense following one of their worst seasons in team history.