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The Competition 2018: Special Teams

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Returning Players

P Sam Koch (13th season)
LS Morgan Cox (ninth season)
K Justin Tucker (seventh season)
WR Chris Moore (third season)
WR Tim White (second season)

Free-Agent Signings

WR Willie Snead IV (fourth season)
WR DeVier Posey (third season)

Rookies

WR Jordan Lasley (fifth round)
WR Janarion Grant (undrafted)
LS Trent Sieg (undrafted)
P Kaare Vedvik (undrafted)

Projected Starters

The Wolfpack isn’t going anywhere. Kicker Justin Tucker, punter Sam Koch and long snapper Morgan Cox are still arguably the best kicking trio in the NFL.

Tucker had yet another standout season in which he made 34 of 37 attempts (91.9 percent) and all his extra points. Tucker flirted with perfection in 2016 when he drilled 38 of 39 opportunities (97.4 percent). Koch is still the master of directional punting and pinning opponents inside their 20-year line (or even the 5-yard line). Cox is the mechanism who starts it all as an integral piece of the puzzle.

The Ravens’ special teams unit has the ability to win a lot of games for Baltimore, and it will work to be the league’s best yet again.

Key Role Players

There are a lot of players who are instrumental in the Ravens’ special teams success overall as blockers or tacklers on return/coverage units. Baltimore has long been considered to have one of the best units in the league overall, thanks in part to players such as safety Anthony Levine, linebacker Albert McClellan and others. The Ravens will continue to work in young players, including rookies.

Most Anticipated Battle

The best competition is at returner, where the Ravens are looking for help on both punts and kickoffs after the free-agent departure of Michael Campanaro to the Tennessee Titans. Chris Moore can return kickoffs, and did well in the role last year with a 26.6-yard average on 13 returns. He’s not a punt returner though, and with the new rules in place, the Ravens are looking for a game-breaker.

Tim White flashed as a returner last year before tearing a ligament in his thumb during his first NFL preseason game. He later caught a touchdown pass after suffering the injury. If White can pick up where he left off and contribute on offense, he can find a way onto the 53-man squad.

Janarion Grant was among college football’s most prolific returners before a major ankle injury derailed his progress. He had eight touchdowns (five on kickoffs and three on punts) in 39 games before the injury. Grant has impressed so far this summer and has a real shot at the job.

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