Looking back, some of the largest icons in NFL history are often the ones that can be overlooked. All franchises have had their fair share of historic players, but who were the best of the best? Here, we discuss the four most iconic players to step on the field. We continue our series with the Baltimore Ravens:
OT Jonathan Ogden (1996-2007)
In a sense, Odgen revolutionized how front offices viewed offensive line strategies. After receiving praise from General Manage Ozzie Newsome, Ogden was selected with the fourth overall selection in the 1996 NFL Draft.
As a total, he made 11 Pro Bowls and was named to the All-Pro team on nine occasions. His ability to become a staple on the Ravens offensive line played a factor in the team’s Super Bowl run during the 2000 season. He was named as a first-ballot Hall of Fame talent in 2013.
LB Terrell Suggs (2003-19)
With the 10th selection in the 2003 Draft, Suggs made an immediate impact with Baltimore. During his first season, he was named as Defensive Rookie of the Year after totaling 12 sacks. Through his tenure with the Ravens, Suggs was responsible for 132.5 sacks.
The height of Suggs’ career came in 2011, where he was awarded Defensive Player of the Year after accumulating 14 sacks and seven forced fumbles. Despite falling to the New England Patriots in the playoffs, the team came back the following year to win the Super Bowl.
S Ed Reed (2002-12)
After falling to the 24th overall pick in the 2002 NFL Draft, Reed became known as one of the best defensive backs in the history of the league. Just two years into his career, he was named as Defensive Player of the Year.
As a nine-time Pro Bowl and eight-time All-Pro talent, Reed was eventually named to the NFL’s 100th anniversary team. Paired alongside Terrell Suggs and Ray Lewis during a span of his career resulted in one of the most efficient defenses in NFL history.
In a fairytale ending, Reed’s final game with Baltimore was a Super Bowl victory over the San Francisco 49ers. As another first-ballot Hall of Fame honoree, his spot on the Mount Rushmore isn’t up for much debate.
LB Ray Lewis (1996-2012)
Originally viewed as undersized for a linebacker, Lewis was eventually taken by the Baltimore Ravens with the 26th overall pick. As a result, they ended up with one of the greatest linebackers in NFL history.
As a two-time Defensive Player of the Year winner, Lewis also earned a total of 13 Pro Bowl and 10 All-Pro nominations. He was also part of two Super Bowl runs for the Ravens. He made the NFL’s 100th anniversary team and a spot in the Hall of Fame.