4 Baltimore Ravens bound for a breakout season in 2017

BALTIMORE, MD - DECEMBER 18: Running back Terrance West
BALTIMORE, MD - DECEMBER 18: Running back Terrance West /
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3. Chris Wormley, DE

Jon Giles’ defensive prediction:

The potential resigning of Zachary Orr throws a wrench in the Baltimore Ravens’ cogs that’s the size of 130 tackles. Plugging him into the middle beside the All Pro CJ Mosley pushes a potential breakout star in Kamalei Correa to the bench.

It would also move another potential candidate, Tyus Bowser, further down the Ravens incredible linebacking depth chart. Until the Orr quandary is resolved, the safe bet for a potential breakout star on the defense needs to come from another layer.

On the defensive line, Chris Wormley gets the nod as the big new star. Brandon Williams is the stalwart, but the rest of his companions are relatively unknown. Michael Pierce had a fantastic season and while both he and Williams would be a nasty wall, we shouldn’t expect that combo on the field often.

They each operate best out of the one technique, shading a guard and commanding the double team. The Ravens will likely start Brent Urban on one edge, and either Willie Henry or Chris Wormley on the other. While Henry did have 6.5 sacks last year, it was mostly off motor, not skill.

Wormley has the higher ceiling, above average run stopping abilities, excellent hand control and versatility. His biggest weakness was shedding blocks, he definitely has the potential for real skill off the edge.

As a former candidate for both the Bronko Nagurski Trophy and the Chuck Bednarik Award, expect Chris Wormley to quickly get the desired playing time and emerge as the latest in the long lineage of Ravens pass rushers.

Advanced stats to prove Wormley is the real deal: According to Mock Draftable, a website that uses NFL Combine measurables to compare prospects to their NFL counterparts, Wormley is going to be much better than his third round slot shows.

The 6-foot-5 defensive end at 298 pounds makes him stand out, even among the behemoths on NFL defensive lines. Match that with his agility seen in his 3-cone drill (7.08 seconds. 81st percentile) and he gets compared to Cameron Heyward, William Gholston, Jason Pierre-Paul, and Carlos Dunlap.

All four players have had stellar careers, according to the Approximate Value statistic seen before:

Cameron Heyward: 5.7 AV/yr

William Gholston: 5.05 AV/yr

Jason Pierre-Paul: 8.75 AV/yr

Carlos Dunlap: 8 AV/yr

Yearly average extrapolated out to 16 games per year

If Wormley can provide the kind of defensive prowess seen in those four NFL comparisons, the Ravens have an absolute steal. The 2017 Baltimore Ravens will be remembered for their defense–and Chris Wormley’s rise to stardom.