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Patrick Queen: We lost some key pieces, but we still want to be a top-five defense

Questions continue to swirl around Lamar Jackson after another Ravens playoff flop, but Chris Simms remains a believer in "maybe the greatest weapon in football" -- enough to rank him No. 6 on his Top 40 QB Countdown.

It didn’t take long for Patrick Queen to become a key member of the Ravens’ defense.

The linebacker started all 16 games for Baltimore as a rookie last year, recording 106 tackles, nine tackles for loss, 3.0 sacks, an interception, and a pair of fumbles.

Baltimore’s defense will have to make some adjustments for 2021 after losing veteran edge rushers Matthew Judon and Yannick Ngakoue in free agency. But in an interview with NFL Network’s Good Morning Football on Monday, Queen said he expects the Ravens to still remain strong.

“Those guys are are one-of-a-kind so you know we lost some key pieces. But I feel like, it’s the Ravens defense, so you know how we’re gonna come,” Queen said. “We’ve got those new guys up front in the draft. So there’s a lot of stuff to look out for. And we just want to be that same defense we were, a top-five defense. All the pieces that we’ve got, all the coaching that we’ve got added to the team — it’s going to be a big season. And I can’t wait.”

The Ravens drafted Odafe Oweh out of Penn State in the first round and Daelin Hayes in the fifth round out of Notre Dame to help fill in along the defensive front.

Entering his second season, Queen also noted that he wants to be a more complete player in the coming year when told he’s a candidate to be a breakout star.

“There’s a lot of stuff I need to clean up from last year,” Queen said. “So being a breakout star, in position for next year, it’s kind of a humbling thing and an exciting thing as well — just to get to prove to everybody that I am a star. There’s a lot of stuff to clean up, like I said, but we’re looking forward to the season that we’re about to have.”