Ravens Value Redding’s Play, Leadership

The defensive lineman put up a career-high 2.5 sacks against the 49es on Thanksgiving.

Posted by Garrett Downing on Tuesday, November 29th, 2011 at 12:45 pm | Categories: Garrett Downing, Week 12 vs 49ers

He’s not the biggest name. He doesn’t put up the eye-popping statistics. He’s not the most outspoken.

But for the Baltimore Ravens, defensive end Cory Redding plays a crucial role and is one of the veteran leaders in the locker room.

“Cory Redding is one of the best leaders that we have,” Head Coach John Harbaugh said Monday.

Redding showed his value in the 16-6 victory over San Francisco last week, putting up a career-high 2.5 sacks and recording five tackles. Redding’s big night came as part of a nine-sack performance by Baltimore’s defense, tying a franchise record.

Redding now has 3.5 sacks on the season, which is the most he’s had since 2006 with the Detroit Lions.

“Very talented big man, playing ferocious football right now,” Harbaugh said.

Redding, who is in his second season with the Ravens, came to Baltimore after six years in Detroit and one in Seattle.

On Thursday, he played arguably his best game as a Raven.

“Just everything fell in place,” Redding said. “I just made the plays when I had the chance.”

Redding’s 2.5-sack performance was largely overshadowed by the three-sack night from outside linebacker Terrell Suggs, a four-time Pro Bowler and candidate for the AFC Defensive Player of the Year.

Suggs may have stolen most of the attention, but Redding’s effort was not lost on those inside the Ravens’ locker room, where the nine-year pro has earned the respect of his teammates.

“I am a leader on this team, in my own way,” Redding said. “I believe everybody is a leader in their own way. We all know that Ray Lewis is the man, but he can’t do it by himself.”

That leadership – and games like the one against San Francisco – makes Redding an instrumental part of the Ravens star-filled defense.

“He plays in a fury right now,” Harbaugh said, “so I think he fits in real well with our defense.”

Tags: , ,