The NFL Top 100 has begun to release their annual rankings exclusively voted on by active players. The Nos. 100-91 debuted on Monday and following a strong bounce back season in which he earned his third career Pro Bowl nod, seven-year veteran cornerback Marlon Humphrey was the first Raven revealed on the 2023 list at No. 92.
Humphrey had one of the best seasons of his career last year, in which he didn’t surrender a single to touchdown in 664 coverage snaps according to Pro Football Focus. He started all 17 games and finished with 71 total tackles, 3 tackles for loss, 4 quarterback hits, 3 interceptions, 7 pass deflections, a forced fumble, 2 fumble recoveries, and a career-high 3 sacks per Pro Football Reference.
“The best part about playing (defensive back) is sometimes it just turns into a one-on-one game,” he said. “Playing corner is basically basketball and boxing. You’re sliding, you’re trying to play basketball and then you’re punching.”
Known for his physical prowess and gregarious personality, second-year quarterback Anthony Brown was one of the players interviewed and described Humphrey as “a character” and student of the game.
“He’s always working, he’s always into his technique, (is) very critical of himself,” Brown said.
One of the biggest things that Humphrey said he likes to do whenever he’s on the field is being as “annoying” as he possibly can to opposing pass catchers.
“Wide receivers don’t like getting touched,” Humphrey said. “Whatever you can do, he’ll just be so worried about you that he just might drop the ball. Just try to be as physical as you can. If you can make your presence shown, I think that goes a long way.”
Humphrey is one of the rare players at his position that possesses the positional flexibility to play and dominate in the slot as well as on the perimeter. If the Ravens can’t find a suitable candidate to fill the nickel corner spot, he would welcome the chance to continue playing in the slot when needed.
“I really like playing inside corner,” Humphrey said. “You’re around the ball a lot (and) you’re able to be really physical. I love getting sacks.”
Reigning Defensive Rookie of the Year, Sauce Gardner of the New York Jets who likely be revealed much later after earning first team All-Pro honors last year described Humphrey as a “ballhawk.”
‘That’s why he got a lot of forced fumbles, a lot of strips, and all of that,” Gardner said.
This is the third time that Humphrey has made an appearance with the other two instances coming in 2020 when he came in at No. 86 and in 2021 when he received his highest ranking to date at No. 38.
“I want my peers to say I’m one of the top 100 guys in the NFL,” Humphrey said. “To get that recognition, it really takes a lot of respect and so being back on the list is always great.”