Bernard Pollard came to the Ravens in 2011 as the replacement to Dawan Landry, who’s now in Jacksonville. Some were skeptical at first, but Pollard quickly showed why he was meant to play for the Ravens. Entering his second year in Baltimore, Pollard continues to impress with his multi-dimensional play.
Bernard Pollard was a key player against the Eagles, making huge plays that kept the Ravens in the game. A big sack on a critical Eagles possession and a huge red-zone interception turned the momentum in the Ravens favor and gave the offense more opportunities. Additionally, Pollard’s bone-crushing hits early in the first half really set the tone for what was quite a chippy game. His perfectly executed, legal hit against the Eagles’ Brent Celek stands out in my eyes. Celek snagged a high pass from quarterback Michael Vick before turning and being formally introduced to Mr. Pollard, who caused Celek’s neck to snap back, taking his helmet halfway off of his head. It was a big, physical statement in a game that was already getting out of hand in terms of after-the-whistle action.
Unfortunately, Pollard left the game after taking a helmet to the ribs during a combined sack of Vick in the first half, and did not return. Had #31 stayed in for the full 60 minutes, the outcome of the game may have been different.
These kinds of plays aren’t just a one-time occurrence for Pollard, as he’s made big hits a part of his resume and reputation. This hard-hitting, defensive prowess is something the Ravens have grown accustomed to and adopted over their existence in the NFL. It’s this mentality that really makes Pollard special to the Ravens and sets him apart from other safeties. His pass coverage skills are good, but it’s his hard hits and blue collar work ethic that have made him an integral part of the Baltimore D.