Pundit Says Kyle Hamilton Is One of Top Three Defensive Players in NFL

The Ravens misplaced key gamers and a number of coaches from final season’s No. 1 scoring protection, however the unit nonetheless figures to be among the many NFL’s elite in 2024.

The Ringer’s Diante Lee put the Ravens at No. 2 in his rankings of the ten greatest defenses for the approaching season on “The Ringer NFL Show” podcast. One of the primary causes Lee is excessive on the Ravens protection is the all-around play of All-Pro security Kyle Hamilton.

“They may need the best chess piece within the NFL defensively in Kyle Hamilton,” Lee mentioned. “The manner that they are in a position to weaponize him particularly on this protection, it is completely different than every little thing else within the league. … If you place him on the nickel, he could be the perfect nickel participant in protection, he could be the perfect nickel participant as a blitzer, he could be the perfect nickel participant as a run defender. That’s completely different, and that is not even speaking about what he could be deep down the sector.”

The Ringer’s Steven Ruiz additionally praised Hamilton, rating him because the third-best defensive participant within the league, behind edge rushers Micah Parsons and Myles Garrett. Lee agreed and cited Hamilton as a chief instance of the Ravens valuing versatile gamers “in a manner that’s misplaced on a variety of different defenses and franchises in roster constructing.”

Lee mentioned the Ravens’ long-standing defensive philosophy is another excuse why he believes the group will stay dominant beneath new Defensive Coordinator Zach Orr, even with out standouts akin to Jadeveon Clowney, Patrick Queen, and Geno Stone.

“I’m nonetheless assured in what they’re as a result of the core items outdoors of defensive coordinator are all there. And for as a lot as I believe Mike Macdonald remodeled what they did, what they do defensively tracks all the best way again to Marvin Lewis being there as a defensive coach,” Lee mentioned. “There’s an infrastructure there, and that is one other piece of it for me that I attempt to think about, if there is a clear construction as to how they construct. And Baltimore has a transparent imaginative and prescient in how they construct.

“It’s getting sturdy up the center; they do not prioritize edge rushers; after which what they do on the again finish when it comes to altering coverages. … When they should stress, they will. When they should play smooth protection, they will. They had been truly superb in man protection. And they did all this with out having a top-flight edge rusher, which speaks to me about what they’re schematically and why I really feel so good about what they will do. And you’ve [linebacker] Roquan Smith within the center who has simply been a problem-eraser for them from the second that they traded for him. I’ve no cause to not consider that they are nonetheless going to be a prime two-to-three protection.”