“Stimulus Bill II”

The Baltimore Ravens will always be one of the best defensive teams in the NFL. That’s one thing I can always count on is having one of the five best defensive units. One of their under-the-radar players has been a guy named Matthew Judon. I remember one year saying for the Ravens to be that stingy defense, he would need to be their best player. Just as Ray Lewis passed the keys to Terrell Suggs, Terrell did the same for Matthew. However, this year, Matthew will be playing football elsewhere. The Patriots announced they’re signing the linebacker to a four-year deal worth $56 million.

I know injuries have played a significant role in his career. When he’s healthy, he’s a force. At 6’3 and 260 pounds, he plays downhill. He’s a read and react linebacker which you must be when you’re playing on the outside as he does. I’ve seen him pick up a running back in coverage in the flat and drill him with a tackle in the open field for a loss. When it comes to stopping the run, he’s all in. He has the speed to pursue the ball-carrier to bring him down. His true specialty is pass rushing whether it’s standing up at his normal outside linebacker position or he’s in a stance with his hand down as a defensive end. Even when the quarterback is moving around to escape, he’s still running after the quarterback for the sack.

When you think of those Patriot teams that won Super Bowls, many of those defenses had one thing in common. That was a guy who could consistently rush the passer. Guys like Matthew Judon are the players that Bill Belichick likes. I’m talking about the guys who can do a variety of things on the field to contribute. This is an excellent signing for the Patriots.


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