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Will Paul Kruger be back in 2013?
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diamondbull424


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PostPosted: Fri Sep 07, 2012 12:07 am    Post subject: Will Paul Kruger be back in 2013? Reply with quote

Quote:
@mzenitz: Asked what Ravens defender he sees being most poised for a breakthrough season, DE Pernell McPhee responded, "Paul Kruger, no doubt." [Twitter]

@mzenitz: McPhee on Kruger: "That guy has got as much athleticism as any guy I know. He's a great pass rusher and he's got a great get-off." #Ravens [Twitter]

I've been thinking about this recently and after reading the above tweets (BR.com, quick hits) from Pernel McPhee, it got me to thinking. We all pretty much expect Paul Kruger to be one of the more important players on our defense this season if we're going to make a push for the playoffs. And he's expected to be a breakout type of performer. I would expect him to build on his sack numbers from last season (perhaps 8-10 hopefully) while adding a more complete aspect to his game... but that being said, what if Kruger indeed performs to our expectations, with him being an UFA following this season, do you guys think we will bring him back?

Kruger will be turning 27 come next season and will be in the the thick of his prime- it could very well be his last opportunity to earn a big payday type contract. Do you guys think Kruger will be back in 2013? And how much exactly do you think he might demand on the open market? Let's assume he posts say.. 50 tackles, 8 sacks, 1 FF, 1 INT. What do you guys think about Paul Kruger returning?
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coordinator0


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PostPosted: Fri Sep 07, 2012 2:37 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

If Kruger puts up decent pass-rushing numbers like I expect (hope) he does then I don't see him coming back to the Ravens. The premium on pass-rushers is pretty high and the cap space might not be available to retain him. Just look at the contract Ahmad Brooks recently received from the 49ers, to me they're comparable players (if Kruger puts up another good season). Should the Ravens spend that much to keep what would be a reserve/specialist behind Suggs and Upshaw? I'm not sure either way but I wouldn't expect it. Of course if Kruger will be playing mostly SAM this year then we should temper our expectations for his pass-rushing stats too.
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drd23


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PostPosted: Fri Sep 07, 2012 5:41 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Took me a second to figure out what you meant by the thread title when I first saw it, I thought he got injured or something Laughing

I think its pretty obvious that if Kruger can get ~8 sacks this season and show good run stopping ability to go with that, that he'll receive an offer too large for us to match it.

Then there is the fact that Kruger himself might want to leave so that he can play DE in a 4-3 scheme (which I think suits him better). If that's the case, it probably won't matter what happens this season
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diamondbull424


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PostPosted: Fri Sep 07, 2012 2:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

^^^ I definitely agree with the above outlooks. It's just concerning that Kruger could finally break out and we wouldn't be reaping the benefits of his upwards career trend... I suppose we could potentially see a 3rd round comp pick if he receives enough attention on the open market.

I just hope that Suggs is able to make a full recovery from this injury and it doesn't adversely affect the rest of his career like some of the more serious achilles injuries have been known to do. Especially with how much guaranteed cash he's already received.
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coordinator0


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PostPosted: Fri Sep 07, 2012 3:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm worried about Suggs too, but it sounded like this wasn't the type of Achilles injury that's as serious as others. Only time will tell in this situation though. I'm not really worried about the money he's already received since it doesn't really affect the future cap space for the Ravens and as far as I'm concerned he's earned it.

If Kruger does have a good season it would be nice if the Ravens found a way to keep him but like I said earlier I wouldn't expect it. Having another competent pass-rusher would give the team the option to rest Suggs more and that's something I think everybody would benefit from, especially now that he's going to be coming back from an injury.

I wouldn't be surprised to see the team draft a pass-rusher earlier in the draft again if Kruger leaves in free agency, and to be honest I'm not that adverse to the idea. It's not a good thing to continually invest high picks in one position but with the importance of the pass-rushing position you've got to keep trying until you get it right. Kruger, Kindle, and Upshaw were all second round picks (in 3 out of the last 4 drafts) but if only one of those guys is still on the team or a productive player then the team still has a need. With Suggs coming back it's not a big need but having a good back-up at that spot is something you want. It's not like it would be a hard thing to put Suggs, Upshaw, and X pass-rusher on the field at the same time either given the ability of both Suggs and Upshaw to rush from the DE position. Of course the team will have other needs and I'm not saying they will take a pass-rusher high but I'm not going to rule it out or be upset about it if it happens either. LT (maybe, depends on Oher), WR (depends on what they do with Boldin, still expect it to be a priority though), ILB, and S will be high on the list too in my opinion.

I put way more into that than I intended to.
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Flaccomania


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PostPosted: Fri Sep 07, 2012 4:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I agree with what everyone else has said. A season like that and he'll likely price himself out of Baltimore.
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RAVINGMADD


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PostPosted: Sat Sep 08, 2012 12:31 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

coordinator0 wrote:

I wouldn't be surprised to see the team draft a pass-rusher earlier in the draft again if Kruger leaves in free agency, and to be honest I'm not that adverse to the idea. It's not a good thing to continually invest high picks in one position but with the importance of the pass-rushing position you've got to keep trying until you get it right. Kruger, Kindle, and Upshaw were all second round picks (in 3 out of the last 4 drafts) but if only one of those guys is still on the team or a productive player then the team still has a need. With Suggs coming back it's not a big need but having a good back-up at that spot is something you want. It's not like it would be a hard thing to put Suggs, Upshaw, and X pass-rusher on the field at the same time either given the ability of both Suggs and Upshaw to rush from the DE position. Of course the team will have other needs and I'm not saying they will take a pass-rusher high but I'm not going to rule it out or be upset about it if it happens either. LT (maybe, depends on Oher), WR (depends on what they do with Boldin, still expect it to be a priority though), ILB, and S will be high on the list too in my opinion.

Totally agree with this. You can never have too many pass rushers. I would think we end up letting Kruger go and see what we have with Upshaw, but draft another just in case. I think we should just keep drafting pass rushers high until we have at least three solid options.
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diamondbull424


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PostPosted: Sat Sep 08, 2012 2:13 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

coordinator0 wrote:
I'm worried about Suggs too, but it sounded like this wasn't the type of Achilles injury that's as serious as others. Only time will tell in this situation though. I'm not really worried about the money he's already received since it doesn't really affect the future cap space for the Ravens and as far as I'm concerned he's earned it.

If Kruger does have a good season it would be nice if the Ravens found a way to keep him but like I said earlier I wouldn't expect it. Having another competent pass-rusher would give the team the option to rest Suggs more and that's something I think everybody would benefit from, especially now that he's going to be coming back from an injury.

I wouldn't be surprised to see the team draft a pass-rusher earlier in the draft again if Kruger leaves in free agency, and to be honest I'm not that adverse to the idea. It's not a good thing to continually invest high picks in one position but with the importance of the pass-rushing position you've got to keep trying until you get it right. Kruger, Kindle, and Upshaw were all second round picks (in 3 out of the last 4 drafts) but if only one of those guys is still on the team or a productive player then the team still has a need. With Suggs coming back it's not a big need but having a good back-up at that spot is something you want. It's not like it would be a hard thing to put Suggs, Upshaw, and X pass-rusher on the field at the same time either given the ability of both Suggs and Upshaw to rush from the DE position. Of course the team will have other needs and I'm not saying they will take a pass-rusher high but I'm not going to rule it out or be upset about it if it happens either. LT (maybe, depends on Oher), WR (depends on what they do with Boldin, still expect it to be a priority though), ILB, and S will be high on the list too in my opinion.

I put way more into that than I intended to.

Well we may not necessarily have to spend a high draft pick on a pass rusher. IF Suggs is somehow able to return and demonstrate an ability to look close enough to his former self then I think bringing Sergio Kindle back on a RFA tender could theoretically be enough. Especially with us housing that Hamilton from Prairie View on the PS, hopefully both of those players along with McClellan can show enough this season to keep us from having to spend high level draft resources on the pass rush position again.

I wouldn't have a problem with revisiting the position in the 2014 draft and have a high level pass rusher sit behind Suggs and Courtney Upshaw to develop... that way we can keep pumping out pass rushers in a fashion similar to the Steelers and Giants. But to go again to the well in 2013 when it's very much possible that this will be the final years for: Ray Lewis, Ed Reed, and Anquan Boldin. I'm less worried about Boldin as there appears to be a contingency in place with Doss and developing receivers like Streeter. So WR would be something I'd only see if its BPA. But in terms of defense losing two leaders, having another leader's ability to play at the same level as questionable, and suffering from an overall lack of defensive depth in the front 7 the past few seasons is concerning. We'll also be losing Cary Williams to free agency most likely as well.

I suppose the only good thing about our situation is that quality safeties and ILBers can usually be found on the 2nd day of the draft.
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coordinator0


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PostPosted: Fri Sep 28, 2012 11:07 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think the question we should we be asking now is "Do we want Paul Kruger to be back in 2013? This isn't related to that incredibly stupid penalty he was called for last night (flop or not it was a bad decision) but it's his play I'm worried about. I'm starting to wonder if last season wasn't more of a fluke than anything. One good thing for Baltimore if they do want to keep Kruger is that he won't be commanding a lot of money if this keeps up.
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diamondbull424


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PostPosted: Fri Sep 28, 2012 12:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well I think last season the big thing was that he succeeded as a role player. I think Kruger has looked at his worse when he's been out there and asked to stop the run. But against the pass, he's proven to be adept at both dropping back and being instinctual in coverage as well as his main attribute of getting to the quarterback.

Kruger also has been struggling through a back thing this season, so maybe with a year to recover and strengthen, he comes back as more of a force.

He'll be 27 next season and he'll probably be getting his biggest career contract. So I'm thinking it'll come down to a choice between him wanting to "win" and be a role player... or go to another team, perhaps be a more featured player.. and gets a little overpaid.

My preference might simply be to let Kruger slide and we get a 2014 comp pick out of him (hopefully). He's on pace for 6 sacks and I think he probably gets slightly more... If he can get pass that mark, I think he could find a home elsewhere for a decent amount more than we'd be willing to pay him. We wouldn't likely sign a player of the same position with Kindle on the bench (and that other guy on our practice squad), but a rookie would sound like a good proposition. Kruger would save us a draft selection, but we still have Kindle's rights for one more season and we have chances at rookie pass rushers to aid us. I really think we need to just go out and get an athletic freak. I just find out pass rushers to be a little too slow, none of them are truly disruptive besides Ngata.
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SnA ExclusiVe


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PostPosted: Fri Sep 28, 2012 12:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

He'll be back.
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coordinator0


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PostPosted: Fri Sep 28, 2012 1:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

diamondbull424 wrote:
Well I think last season the big thing was that he succeeded as a role player. I think Kruger has looked at his worse when he's been out there and asked to stop the run. But against the pass, he's proven to be adept at both dropping back and being instinctual in coverage as well as his main attribute of getting to the quarterback.

Kruger also has been struggling through a back thing this season, so maybe with a year to recover and strengthen, he comes back as more of a force.

He'll be 27 next season and he'll probably be getting his biggest career contract. So I'm thinking it'll come down to a choice between him wanting to "win" and be a role player... or go to another team, perhaps be a more featured player.. and gets a little overpaid.

My preference might simply be to let Kruger slide and we get a 2014 comp pick out of him (hopefully). He's on pace for 6 sacks and I think he probably gets slightly more... If he can get pass that mark, I think he could find a home elsewhere for a decent amount more than we'd be willing to pay him. We wouldn't likely sign a player of the same position with Kindle on the bench (and that other guy on our practice squad), but a rookie would sound like a good proposition. Kruger would save us a draft selection, but we still have Kindle's rights for one more season and we have chances at rookie pass rushers to aid us. I really think we need to just go out and get an athletic freak. I just find out pass rushers to be a little too slow, none of them are truly disruptive besides Ngata.


Taking on a bigger role is what I think has slowed Kruger down too, but I don't think he's looked very good at getting to the QB. He has always been able to drop back into coverage fairly well and it is nice that at least one of the LBs can do that.

I'm not expecting anything from Kindle at this point. With the struggles the team has had getting to the QB you would think they might try him out but the only time he's been active is when Kruger was out. Kindle hasn't looked good in the limited opportunities he's had either.

I agree that they need to find one of those highly athletic pass-rushers to terrorize QBs/OLs off the edge. Suggs isn't even that type of player and I think the team would really benefit from it. It wouldn't be too hard to get Suggs, Upshaw, and X athletic pass-rusher on the field at the same time either. The problem with that is they probably won't have a great opportunity to add a guy with that description. Now that I think about it though the Ravens should have some more flexibility trading up in the draft because of the extra compensation picks they'll receive.
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diamondbull424


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PostPosted: Fri Sep 28, 2012 2:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

coordinator0 wrote:

Taking on a bigger role is what I think has slowed Kruger down too, but I don't think he's looked very good at getting to the QB. He has always been able to drop back into coverage fairly well and it is nice that at least one of the LBs can do that.

I'm not expecting anything from Kindle at this point. With the struggles the team has had getting to the QB you would think they might try him out but the only time he's been active is when Kruger was out. Kindle hasn't looked good in the limited opportunities he's had either.

I agree that they need to find one of those highly athletic pass-rushers to terrorize QBs/OLs off the edge. Suggs isn't even that type of player and I think the team would really benefit from it. It wouldn't be too hard to get Suggs, Upshaw, and X athletic pass-rusher on the field at the same time either. The problem with that is they probably won't have a great opportunity to add a guy with that description. Now that I think about it though the Ravens should have some more flexibility trading up in the draft because of the extra compensation picks they'll receive.

Well I'm not sure exactly how true that is at this point. Look at Whitney Mercilus falling into the mid-20s.

I think his teammate Michael Buchanan is someone that should be a 1st/2nd or solid 2nd kind of guy. He's a little tall at 6'6", but he has an explosive get off. He's no Mingo, but with a great getoff and with his size/length... I'm thinking that might be all we need. Buchanan isn't polished at this point, but he looks to possess all the basic skills to be a successful pass rusher. He could lineup as a 43 DE or OLB due to his athleticism. He's someone that should be in our range unless he explodes for something incredible.

That said, this sort of looks like a weak draft in comparison to the past two drafts. The best guard prospect in this class, I find to be a decent amount lower than I had Kevin Zeitler and DeCastro. Travis Frederick and Chance Warmack just aren't as impressive IMO. The talent at the top of the draft seems- at this point- to be less disbursed down then last year and the year before. I haven't been as impressed with the tape on most of the guys I've watched on tape. This sort of reminds me of the 2008 NFL draft's. Just doesn't seem strong.
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coordinator0


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PostPosted: Fri Sep 28, 2012 2:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I don't think Mercilus is a freak athlete though. He struck me as more of a straight-line guy and that's not what I would classify as a top athlete. From what I've read/heard (haven't looked into him too much) about Buchanan he might be a good fit. This draft does look kind of meh to me as well but I thought the same about last draft too.
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SnA ExclusiVe


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PostPosted: Fri Sep 28, 2012 3:02 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Are there really teams out there that are going to pay an average at best pass rusher better than we can?
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