Baltimore Ravens strong safety Bernard Pollard told Aaron Wilson that he will play against the New England Patriots on Sunday, ’I'm playing, it’s going to be all good.”
“All good”. Funny. Everyone remembers Pollard for knocking Tom Brady out of the 2008 season by tearing his ACL and MCL in his left knee. But I hope nobody says anything like “I hate Pollard”, because he genuinely felt terrible for what he did. He’s actually a good guy in general, so it’s always tough to see a good person defined by one play that certainly isn’t something worth looking fondly at.
With Pollard back in the fold, former New England Patriots safety James Ihedigbo will be back in the preferred third-safety role for the Ravens. Pollard and Ihedigbo are both primarily run-stopping safeties, but Pollard is better against both the run and pass. While he is clearly below-average in coverage, at least Pollard doesn’t blow his assignments on nearly every play like Ihedigbo, who was released by the Pats in the offseason in an unsurprising cut.
The Ravens will be better off with Pollard, as Brent Celek had a great game for the Philadelphia Eagles partially because of Pollard’s absence after he was injured in the first quarter of the game. Rob Gronkowski should still be able to have a big game against Baltimore, but it’s going to be a little less easy with the heavy-hitting, better-in-coverage Pollard back there. He may be better than Ihedigbo, but I wouldn’t bet on him in coverage.
And seriously, lay off the guy. That was history. I will be honest though, I used to hate Pollard before I learned he is a classy guy when playing with the Houston Texans. In college at Purdue, people called him “The Bonecrusher”. Yeah, no kidding (even though he injured Brady’s ligaments…but still). Pollard can’t cover, but he can definitely hit and play the run.
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