Marlon Humphrey and Anthony Levine

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Ravens Turning the Corner: Deepest CB Depth in Years

July 11, 2018 - 2:38 pm

For the last handful of years, cornerback has been a position of weakness for the Ravens.  Now, however, you can make the argument that it is the deepest and most talented group on the team.

Baltimore returns every corner from last year in a season in which the team finished 10th in pass defense.  Their projected top two corners are former first-round picks, Jimmy Smith and Marlon Humphrey.  Both players graded out as some of the top corners in the league. 

Smith was on his way to the best year of his career before rupturing his Achilles against the Lions.  Smith had 28 tackles, nine pass deflections, three interceptions and two touchdowns in 12 games.  The eighth-year vet surprised everyone when he returned to practice during minicamp only six months after getting injured.

Humphrey started to come into his own as the season progressed.  He played in all 16 games, including five starts, and registered 34 tackles, 11 pass deflections, and two interceptions.  Humphrey and Smith were two of only six cornerbacks who played 50 percent of their team's snaps and did not allow a touchdown.

The unit also receives a boost with Tavon Young returning from a torn ACL.  Young was impressive as a rookie and proved to be a strong slot corner, but also held his own on the outside.  He had 53 tackles, eight pass deflections and two interceptions in 2016.

Brandon Carr, who started 16 games last season, is currently slotted as the number four corner.   When Jimmy Smith went down with an injury, Carr struggled as teams picked on the veteran.  He has started every game in his career and will prove to be valuable depth on the back end in case of any injuries.

Maurice Canady is entering his third season and made plays for the team down the stretch including the game-winning pass deflection against the Colts.  The Ravens even added more talent through the draft with their selection of Anthony Averett in the fourth round. 

After years of patchwork secondaries, Baltimore appears to have a talented one entering 2018.  Combine that with an attacking front seven; the defense should be a top ten unit.