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Ravens Pass Rush is still under construction, but DC Mike McDonald knows what he wants to make – Reading Eagle

The last Pennsylvania State Michigan football game was tough for Odahu Owe.A year after he helped clear Wolverins in one of his last college games, Ravens outside the linebacker had to watch from afar as the Nittany Lions gave up the slow lead. did With the loss of a small house..

But other than beating his alma mater, Owe remembers what he saw from Wolverins. He was under the then defense coordinator Mike McDonald. Now in his first year overseeing the defense of Ravens, Michigan has developed one of the country’s Pass Rush Duo. One was Aidan Hutchinson, who was finally ranked second in the April NFL Draft, and the other was David Ojabot. The talent of the first round that fell to Ravens In the second round due to injury concerns.

“He will let them go,” Owe said on Friday at Edgerusher in Michigan under McDonald’s. “That’s my favorite. He lets them go. He gives them freedom and just shows who they are. So I’m looking forward to how he uses me. is.”

Three days after the training camp, what is Blitz’s tendency since the days of Don “Wink” Martindale, as Ravens uses Owe, what Pass Rush looks like, or McDonald’s himself is not yet. It is impossible to know how much it will change. I don’t know what his troops can do. The limits of last year’s pass rush were revealed by the end of the season. The possibilities of the 2022 group are still unknown.

At his first press conference at the camp, McDonald’s, 35, recalled defensive players and coaches who promised each other that they “want to be the defense we imagined.” But he admitted that those contours are currently sketched with a pencil rather than a pen.

“I think it’s your team’s reputation,” McDonald’s said. “Last year, our best player was [at Michigan] Being our Edgeman, we wanted them to do what they were doing. So we are currently in the process of understanding who our best players are and what they are best at. And the goal is to get them to do those things. It’s not rocket science, but it’s easy to say. But that’s what we are aiming for. “

Injured and devastated Ravens finished 28th in the league last season for the coordinator to take over one of the NFL’s most disappointing defenses. According to football outsiders — McDonald’s doesn’t have to worry about disassembly. The secondary should be one of the NFL’s most powerful and most flexible. The line of defense must be sturdy. Finally, continuity was born inside the linebacker.

But other than wide receivers, no Ravens group has been scrutinized as much as the team’s Pass Rush. Last year, in Martindale’s final season as coordinator, Ravens had a 31% blitz rate (characteristically low, but the sixth highest in the NFL), but only 34 sack (11th lowest) in 17 games. It ended with a 23% pressure rate (23% pressure rate). 9th lowest). It got worse in highly leveraged situations. With only 12 bags in the 3rd and 4th downs, Ravens was the least since 2002, with only 2 bags in the last 8 games.

The injury did a pass rush, but I don’t like it. Outside linebacker Tyus Bowser, who led the team in seven sack last season, is still recovering from an Achilles tendon rupture. Not cleared to practice.. Due to his shoulder injury, Owe was limited to individual work in the team’s off-season program, but on the first day of the camp he was impressed as a full participant.

“I absolutely didn’t like the situation last season, all the injuries,” said Justin Houston, an outside linebacker who re-signed earlier this month. “But I’m excited this year. I think a lot of things are happening — a lot of special things are happening. I wish you good health.”

If you are in good health, Ravens should have a tightly rotated edge. According to Pro Football Focus, Owe joked that 33-year-old Houston, who was graded out as Ravens’ top pass rush outside linebacker last season, is the “teacher” of the group. Both external linebackers Daelin Hayes and Vince Biegel have flashed. An unsigned Ojabo can manifest itself as a contextual pass rusher if it recovers from a torn Achilles tendon in time to contribute.

Ravens should also have an improved interior pass rush to help newcomer Travis Jones and improved Justin Madubike reduce the workload of fellow lineman Curry Campbell. Inside linebacker Patrick Queen, ready to become a more regular third-down presence this season, was impressed as a camp blitzer.

“One of the challenges we are facing across the camp right now is always looking for the best three, four or five guys. This is not just the best rush, but the pass rush. To work with the best team in the world, “said McDonald.

The most impressive achievement of the year at McDonald’s Michigan is Wolverine Pass Rush Turnaround.. According to Sports Info Solutions, Michigan finished with about 2 1/2 sack per game last season, despite the blitz rate dropping from 42.5% to 30.1%, 11 / per game in 2020. Increased from 2.

Outstanding figures at all levels of Ravens’ defense, from secondary to defensive lines, praise McDonald’s teacher talent and ways to make it look simple. Six weeks after the opening round, Owe is optimistic about the defense’s ability to jump.

“Everyone communicates differently,” Owe said. “We’re all excited. I don’t want to compare anything. Of course, after all, it’s up to the player to play and do everything, but start new things, deepen communication, add sound. It feels like everyone is excited to do that, so it should be a good year. “

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Ravens Pass Rush is still under construction, but DC Mike McDonald knows what he wants to make – Reading Eagle

Source link Ravens Pass Rush is still under construction, but DC Mike McDonald knows what he wants to make – Reading Eagle

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