Looking at the season and the way things have shaped out for this defense, the number of injuries have been shocking for every Ravens fan out there - and for the team itself. However, the lack of consistency along the defensive line has been even more startling, injuries or not.
Haloti Ngata is still playing at a high level despite the injuries as well as constant double teams, but the rest of the crew in run defense has checked out somewhere. More alarming, where is Terrence Cody? I was a big fan when he was drafted by the Ravens in the second round of the 2010 NFL Draft. The combination of Ngata and Cody on paper looked to be unfair for opponents. Well now it’s starting to look unfair for the Baltimore Ravens.
I never expected Cody to be a pass rushing NT and I don’t think anyone else did either. I always thought he would be a NT in the mold of Casey Hampton of the Pittsburgh Steelers or Jamal Williams, a former San Diego Charger, or a Vince Wilfork of the New England Patriots. At least, that’s what I expected. Maybe I was expecting too much and I probably was, but he looked dominant in college.
So seeing him get pushed around at the line of scrimmage like a corner at times just doesn’t make any sense. How can a 35- pound Nose Tackle get pushed around by 290-300-pound centers? It just goes to show that the NFL is not all about strength. It’s more about technique.
Former Raven NT Kelley Gregg was 315 and despite that he held his own at the line of scrimmage. Is it study habits? Is it the weight? Is he not strong enough? Cody has all the tangibles but not many results.
When Cody didn’t start the season as the starting NT over a veteran with multiple injuries such as Ma’ake Kemoeatu it was a warning. Now we know.
So when will he show up? If he can’t handle one-on-one blocks with Ngata getting double-teamed, will he ever? The Ravens may have to use a 1st round pick on a NT in the next draft.
Pernell McPhee gets a pass for the simple fact that this is his first season as a starting DE in a 3-4 defense. But this is year three for Cody.
This is the stretch run. Cody needs to show up now. No more excuses. It’s time for “Mount Cody” to either start being immovable, or to move on.