Safety in sports today is more of a focus than it ever has been. Some think it is the lack of awareness from the past, while others think it is pampering respective leagues. That said, more and more NFL players are voicing their displeasure over the recent rule changes, most notably defensive players.
Defensive players can no longer hit a receiver above the chest, as the league is trying to reduce the amount of concussions. As well, no longer can a defensive player hit a quarterback low or high.
So how does this impact the Baltimore Ravens? Judgement calls. For much of the last several years, the Ravens look to dominate their opponents, mainly defensively. When you look at the landscape of the league, the Ravens defense has been among the best for quite a while.
Judgement calls will always play a role in the game because the rate of speed is too much for the referees to keep up with, but that won’t stop Baltimore from attacking and displaying the kind of play that will make the league proud. Every team in the league is struggling with judgement calls, but the Ravens are smart enough to play through the framework of the rules.
The Ravens know they have an identity of a physical style, but they are trying to be physical in the way that it is smart. They know that they don’t have to impose their will in the wrong way that may lead to consequences from the league.
The Ravens can look at the Detroit Lions and see where all those penalties got them.
The general argument against the certain rule changes is not that they don’t like the idea of player safety. Everyone is in agreement that the league should be safe. The Ravens will embrace this challenge and will want to do what is best for the team and the league.
Wola Odeniran covers the Baltimore Ravens for Rant Sports. Follow and interact with him on Twitter at @WolaOdeniran.