The Baltimore Ravens added plenty of talent to their offensive line in the 2021 offseason. After losing Orlando Brown Jr., Matt Skura and D.J. Fluker, the team brought in players such as Kevin Zeitler, Alejandro Villanueva, and Ben Cleveland.
The additions that the team made should help open up plenty of running lanes for players such as J.K. Dobbins and Gus Edwards. However, another aspect where an improved offensive line can do wonders is in the passing game. Quarterback Lamar Jackson should have much more time to throw with the group that will surround him in 2021.
ESPN analytics developed “pass block win rate” (PBWR) a couple of years ago, which measures how often both players and teams successfully sustain pass blocks for more than 2.5 seconds. An article by Seth Walder of ESPN showed projections for how each team could fare in “PBWR” during the 2021 season. Baltimore was tied for 14th in the category, coming in at a projected 59%. He cited the newcomers as potential liabilities in PBWR, as Zeitler ranked 41st last year while Villanueva ranked 58th.
“It’s shocking to see Baltimore so low on this list. And make no mistake, this has nothing to do with Stanley, who not only finished fourth in PBWR in 2019 but was leading the category through Week 8 when he was injured last season…It’s the three newcomers (Cleveland, Zeitler and Villanueva) who drag down this unit, particularly Villanueva, who looks like a significant downgrade from Orlando Brown Jr. in pass protection (though Villanueva did have a slightly higher run block win rate than Brown last season).”