Who Is the Most Overrated, Most Underrated Player on the Baltimore Ravens?
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The Baltimore Ravens roster is one that is rife with talent on both sides of the ball. However, there are some names we hear more than others, sometimes for good reasons and sometimes without warrant. Every team is going to have at least one player who gets more credit than he deserves and one who works hard and makes plays but just doesn't get recognized for it.
So, who are the most overrated and most underrated players on the Ravens roster? Read on to find out.
Overrated: QB Joe Flacco
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Joe Flacco is not a bad quarterback by any means.
Football Outsiders ranked him 14th for 2011, he had the 12th-most passing yards of any quarterback last season and he ranked 18th in quarterback rating. Flacco also has yet to miss a game in his career, threw for over 300 yards five times (including the playoffs) in 2011 and he has at least one playoff win to his name in each season he's been the Ravens' starter.
But Flacco still has his flaws. Those 300-yard games last season are augmented by seven games with sub-200 yards passing, and his overall year-to-year production has plateaued over the last three seasons.
If Flacco is going to say he's the best quarterback in the league (even if it was a rather innocuous comment that was overblown by the dearth of news during the offseason), then his numbers will need to be better than the just-above-mediocre they've been thus far.
If Flacco's weekly passing yardage was simply more consistent—if he was throwing for the 225 yards per game that his overall yardage totals translate out to—then both he and the Ravens would be better off offensively.
Flacco has had the benefit of a running back like Ray Rice, who can both make the most out of his carries and offer a safety valve in the passing game, and one of the league's premiere defenses to help his team get wins. But Flacco himself has still much to prove if he wants to crack the top 10 in any significant quarterback category.
The fact that he thinks he's already there makes him the Ravens' most overrated player.
Underrated: DT Haloti Ngata
Ask practically anyone to name off the best players on the Ravens defense and they'll likely list off the usual suspects: Ray Lewis, Terrell Suggs, Ed Reed. Though some may not immediately think of defensive tackle Haloti Ngata in their same stratosphere, he most certainly is.
Ngata gets overshadowed by his defensive counterparts because he's not the flashiest player on that side of the ball, nor does he play a glamorous position. But nose tackle Ngata is one of the finest in the league at his position.
Ngata is both an adept run-stopper and a talented pass-rusher. He had 31 total defensive stops last year, including five sacks. He also forced two fumbles, recovered three and defended five passes.
At 6'4" and 340 pounds, Ngata is a wrecking ball, whether he's coming at a running back or trying to pressure the passer. And he does so while taking a backseat to the other, more well-known members of the Ravens defense.
Only on a team such as Baltimore can a first-round pick and three-time Pro Bowler be considered underrated. That speaks highly of the overall talent of the Ravens defense, but it is unfortunate that someone who plays at such a high level like Ngata often gets overlooked when it comes to discussing the Ravens' best players.
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