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Tyus Bowser Shows His Star Potential in Chicago

OLB Tyus Bowser
OLB Tyus Bowser

When the Ravens re-signed Tyus Bowser to a multi-year extension this offseason, they envisioned days like the one in Chicago.

Bowser was dominant in the Ravens' 16-13 victory over the Bears, registering five tackles, two sacks and one tackle for loss.

Bowser was Pro Football Focus' highest-graded Raven in the game and tied with Arizona's Chandler Jones as the highest-graded edge player across the NFL in Week 11.

As he sat in the Ravens' postgame press conference room, Head Coach John Harbaugh gave Bowser a glowing compliment.

"Tyus Bowser has been playing as good a football as any outside linebacker in the National Football League all season long," Harbaugh said. "I think he had a couple sacks today, right? Getting those sacks. But everything he does, he does well, and leading our team the way he does it and all of our guys who lead."

The Ravens had tough decisions to make at outside linebacker this offseason with Matthew Judon and Bowser set to hit free agency. Ultimately, Baltimore opted to bring back Bowser at half the cost (reportedly four years, max $27 million vs. four years, $54.5 million).

Part of the reason why the Ravens opted for Bowser is because of his excellence in coverage. He had three interceptions last season, showing his overall versatility.

But if Bowser can become a consistently dangerous pass rusher, his value will skyrocket. Bowser got the results he wanted in Chicago with the two sacks, including one to close out the game and prevent an Andy Dalton Hail Mary.

"I know those [multi-sack games] don't come around too easily, especially when it comes to Baltimore Ravens, those are the hardest ones to get," Bowser said. "What a great time for that second one to come, putting the icing on the cake."

Bowser also came close to registering two more sacks (one was negated by a holding penalty in the secondary and one was overturned on replay). His first sack jarred the ball loose from Bears rookie quarterback Justin Fields, who was in scoring range.

It's not a one-game anomaly. Bowser also had two sacks in the Ravens' win in Denver. He now leads the Ravens with 4.5 sacks this season, just ahead of Justin Houston and Odafe Oweh.

Last week in Miami, Bowser tied his season-high with six quarterback pressures. He had three pressures against Chicago and made the most of each one.

Judon is tied for the third-most sacks in the league this year with 10.5, making some fans around Baltimore yearn for his services again. If Bowser continues to grow his game like he has over the past few years, there's no telling where his potential tops out.

Harbaugh's encouraging words after Sunday's game will serve as motivation for Bowser to keep pushing.

"It means a lot, man. 'Harbs' is a great guy. I respect him a ton. Just to see that come out of his mouth, that meant everything to me," Bowser said.

"That's definitely motivating. That's going to help me move forward, continue to lock in and continue to strive to be the man that he believes [and] this team believes that I can be. I'm just going to take that and move forward with it. I'm just going to continue to keep my head down, keep working, and when those plays come around, just try to take advantage of it any way to help this team win."

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