Baltimore Ravens: Expect a Big Year out of Timmy Jernigan


Sep 11, 2014; Baltimore, MD, USA; Baltimore Ravens tackle Timmy Jernigan (97) reacts following his tackle against the Pittsburgh Steelers at M&T Bank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Mitch Stringer-USA TODAY Sports

As expected, the loss of Haloti Ngata this offseason left Baltimore Ravens fans in shock and disbelief. However, the Ravens are in good hands, with a crop of younger defensive linemen, who are ready for their chance to shine. One of those players is Timmy Jernigan and the Ravens can expect a breakout season from the Florida State product.

Jernigan was drafted 48th overall by Baltimore in the 2014 NFL Draft, but there is no question that he had first round talent. He slipped to the second round because of his diluted drug test results at the NFL Combine. With that behind him, Jernigan is prepared to show the rest of league front offices what they missed out on.

In his first season in Baltimore, Jernigan showed some flashes of his ability, recording four sacks and 23 total tackles. He played well for the Ravens during Ngata’s four-game suspension for performance-enhancing drugs. Now, with Ngata in Detroit, Jernigan will have a much increased role on that defensive front.

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Not only has the Ravens coaching staff placed high expectations on Jernigan, but he has also placed great expectations for himself. When asked about his aspirations, Jernigan responded saying, “I want to go to the Pro Bowl. I’m not even going to sit here and lie to you.”

Some may say Jernigan is biting off a little more than he can chew, but that’s what you want out of your guys. He wants to be the best and if any player in the NFL does not want to be the best at what they do, then they should probably pick another profession.

Even though this is only his second NFL season, Jernigan appears to be extremely confident heading into the 2015-16 season. He has some big shoes to fill, 5 Pro-Bowl caliber shoes to be specific, but he is more than willing to accept that challenge. The Ravens hope he has made the most of out his time playing with Ngata and will apply what he learned to make him a better player.

The pedigree is definitely there. Jernigan was an All-American at Florida State and was one of the fiercest defenders in all of college football. The Ravens have hopes that he can achieve that level of greatness at the professional level. This may be early, but don’t be surprised if Jernigan is a Pro-Bowler in the next two years.

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