Thursday, May 3, 2012
Terrell Suggs has been durable, dependable
Last week, the Baltimore Ravens drafted Alabama's Courtney Upshaw, hoping to line him up opposite Terrell Suggs as well as fill the void left by Jarret Johnson, who signed with the San Diego Chargers.
If Upshaw starts, it's uncertain who will be his defensive counterpart now that Suggs is expected to miss the 2012 season with a torn Achilles tendon.
Suggs was the 2011 AP Defensive player of the year. He led the AFC with 14.0 sacks, a league-high seven forced fumbles and six passes defensed.
He's the only player over the last two seasons with at least five sacks, five forced fumbles and five passes defensed.
Suggs' 82.5 sacks are the most in franchise history, eighth among active players, and only six players have more sacks since Suggs' rookie season in 2003.
In 2010-11 combined, Suggs was fifth in the NFL with 18 tackles for loss, and in the last two postseasons, his five sacks were the most in the league.
Last season, the Ravens sent four or fewer pass rushers 63.6 percent of the time, which ranked 23rd in the NFL. Still, Suggs recorded 12 of his 14 sacks in that defensive formation, which was tied fourth in the NFL.
Suggs, who will turn 30 in October, has been durable throughout his nine-year career. He's played in 141 of a possible 144 regular-season games and has started all 16 regular-season games in four of the last five seasons.
In 2011, Suggs played in 95 percent of the Ravens' defensive snaps. Among Ravens who started all 16 games last season, only Ed Reed played in a higher percentage of snaps (99.6).