Ray Lewis Reacts to Roquan Smith’s Mega Deal

Ray Lewis Reacts to Roquan Smith’s Mega Deal

Pundits react to ravens propping up Smith

Here’s a look at what pundits are writing about Smith’s deal:

Zrebiec: “There are teams and football executives who obviously don’t think it’s prudent to pay big money to outside linebackers. The Ravens, however, have never been shy about investing in defensive players and they see Smith in this one. Inside linebacker is a fascinating position in Baltimore because of Ray Lewis, and Smith has proven himself to be one of the best in the league.”

Brad Spielberger of Pro Football Focus: “Putting positional value to one side to evaluate the player in a vacuum, Smith and the Ravens have been a fantastic matchup since his arrival at the trade deadline. The eighth overall pick in 2018 NFL Draft has produced a career-high 84.7 PFF grade since joining the team, a mark that leads all Ravens linebackers this season. Not only that, but it’s the highest grade in a season by a linebacker of the Ravens line since Ray Lewis in 2009.[period]”

Jonas Shaffer of the Baltimore Banner: “Smith’s role can now continue to evolve in a defense that, under [Defensive Coordinator Mike] Macdonald, has tried new ways to maximize his athletic gifts. In his first eight games with the Bears this season, he has caught Chicago’s passes 24 times, or three times a game, according to PFF. In Baltimore, he has rushed the passer 42 times, or 4.7 times per game. Smith’s extension also ensures his return to a locker room that embraced him as quickly as he did his new teammates. Smith needed some time in Baltimore to make friends [Patrick] Queen, learn the defensive playbook and earn an endearing new nickname: ‘Uncle Ro’.”

Russell Street Report’s Darin McCann: “It’s weird for me to say I’m excited to pay an outside linebacker $20 million a year in this day and age, but I am. Smith impacted this defense immediately, and it’s an easy assumption to make that he will only improve next year and move forward after full offseasons with the team. There are times when you have to step back from positional value and discern pure impact. Smith makes the defense better. Whether that’s from the rim, out on an island in the corner, diving into a pocket over the middle or just playing all over the field, that’s value. Team value. Smith brings it that.”

Russell Street Report’s Chad Racine: “Early reports this offseason claimed Roquan wanted 20 million a year. He got it, from a team that values ​​his play and leadership on and off the field. For an underrated position in the last few years, the Ravens don’t buck trends and make decisions for themselves. Smith has transformed this defense and money well spent. He’s been the best middle linebacker since Ray Lewis and the Ravens were smart enough to don’t let him walk.[space]Eric DeCosta made the right move in my opinion.”

Baltimore Beatdown’s Dustin Cox: “From the moment he stepped foot on a football field wearing purple and black, Roquan Smith is one of those players who feels like he should have been a Raven his entire career. He embodies style football physicality Baltimore has enjoyed most of the franchise’s existence. Smith sets the tone on defense and has helped elevate other players around him to new heights. Such a player is an obvious building block for that organization.”

Baltimore Beatdown’s Spencer Schultz: “Roquan Smith is Baltimore’s premier tight end. His durability, speed, physicality and intelligence or the main tenants of his game. Smith is an extremely skilled cover linebacker who plays perfectly where the NFL is directed in response to the RPO-happy game and the spread-centric pass, as defenses are living in the two-high safety world, the light world, the value of the “spear” linebackers or the backbone of a defense is elevated. Smith is the epitome of a modern-day linebacker in that sense. At the same time, he has the athleticism, technique and brute strength to take on five-star, first-round running backs and silence the impact of them in the running game.”[add]

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