Young core gives hope to Ravens for future
The Ravens have taken a lot of criticism about previous drafts, but if the 2017 class pans out, the team appears to have built a strong foundation for the future.
It takes three or four years to evaluate the success of each draft, but the Ravens seem to have put together back-to-back good classes. Combined with several decent rookies in 2015, the Ravens have loaded up on defense and have good overall depth.
In two preseason games, the Ravens have routed the Washington Redskins and Miami Dolphins. But the most telling part has been in the second half, when both teams have had their young players on the field. The Ravens have scored 28 points and allowed only three.
Defensive players are starting to get excited again.
“The guys that [general manager Ozzie Newsome] and coach [John] Harbaugh added are coming into their own,” nose tackle Brandon Williams said of his young defensive linemates. “They are getting the playbook even better. They are starting to know the plays, but at the same time read the coverages and read the line.
“We are making big strides, but we still have a long way to go. Wehave a high bar for our room and for our defensive line, and our defense. Every day we are out here grinding, and making ourselves better and better every time. Whenthe season starts, it will be a cakewalk.”
The Ravens still need more playmakers, especially on offense, but football is a sport that requires more blue-collar players than superstars. And who knows? The next