Looking to shore up their defense for the stretch run of the season, the Baltimore Ravens made a huge acquisition ahead of the trade deadline, acquiring linebacker Roquan Smith from the Chicago Bears. Baltimore traded linebacker A.J. Klein along with a second and fifth-round pick in the 2023 NFL Draft to land the tackling machine Smith.
Smith made his Ravens debut on Monday Night Football against the New Orleans Saints. Despite not playing his normal allotment of snaps, as he is still getting accustomed to the Ravens’ schemes, he still managed to make an impact on the field.
This was the first game all season that Smith didn’t play 100 percent of the defensive snaps for his team, as he was on the field for 76 percent and registered five tackles. However, his two tackles to stuff Alvin Kamara in the second quarter helped swing momentum Baltimore’s way, leading to their first scoring drive of the game.
There is a lot of talent on this Ravens’ defense and they should only keep improving. With pass rushers Tyus Bowser and David Ojabo working their way back to the field, Baltimore has an impact playmaker at every level of their defense.
It is something that Smith is excited to be a part of. He felt amazing being on a defense that made the Saints work hard for every yard they gained in the game.
“Man, it’s amazing just being around so many playmakers,” Smith said on NFL Network. “Guys that make plays all over the field. I don’t see no weaknesses at all. . . . I’m excited in the direction that we’re going.”
As Smith gets acclimated to his new team and vice versa, the production should only improve. The Ravens have been slightly below average defensively thus far this season, but expect that to start to change in the coming weeks.
Heading into their bye in Week 10, the coaching staff can take advantage by getting everyone up to speed and healthy for the second half of the season. Roquan Smith has got to be happy about being part of a playoff team that has a chance to contend for a Super Bowl if they can figure things out defensively.