The Competition: Outside Linebackers

24_competitionlb_news.jpg


"The Competition" is a series that breaks down every position battle leading up to training camp.

Returning Players

Terrell Suggs (6-foot-3, 265 pounds, 14th season)

Elvis Dumervil (5-11, 255, 11th season)

Za'Darius Smith (6-4, 275, second season)

Chris Carter (6-1, 240, sixth season)

Brennen Beyer (6-4, 256, first season)

Rookies

Kamalei Correa (6-3, 245, second-round pick)

Matthew Judon (6-3, 275, fifth-round pick)

Victor Ochi (6-1, 246, undrafted)

Mario Ojemudia (6-2, 255, undrafted)

Projected Starters

Suggs and Dumervil are both coming back from injuries, but will be the starters whenever they return. They were the NFL's leading sack duo in 2014, but injuries took their toll on the veterans last year. Suggs went down with an Achilles in Week 1 and Dumervil dealt with a lingering foot injury, among other ailments. The question is how healthy and effective they will be at their climbing ages. With 11 Pro Bowls between them, they have proven they can be dominant players.

Key Role Players

Smith stepped in for Suggs when he went down last year and had a promising rookie campaign, posting 5.5 sacks. He could see more action as a sophomore, especially as he gets a better feel for reading offenses and the loss of Courtney Upshaw vis free agency. The Ravens will also work in their new rookie pass rushers Correa and Judon, which could keep Suggs and Dumervil fresher. Correa may also be used at inside linebacker. If there are any injuries, the Ravens are much better prepared to fill in the gap with their youth.

Most Anticipated Battle

Ochi could be the gem of the undrafted class, but he's at a position that has drafted three players in the past two years. The all-time sacks leader at Stony Brook was projected by ESPN's Mel Kiper to be drafted as high as the third round. Ochi will be competing against Carter, Beyer, Ojemudia and players from other positions to try to get one of the final 53 roster spots.

This article has been reproduced in a new format and may be missing content or contain faulty links. Please use the Contact Us link in our site footer to report an issue.

Related Content

Advertising