The New England Patriots and the Baltimore Ravens are no strangers to each other, having met just last year. A lot has happened since the Ravens’ 37-20 win last November, however, with the Patriots in particular suffering some major departures this offseason.
Before getting ahead of ourselves, however, let’s take a look back at that game to find out how the two clubs have since changed.
The following 32 players from the teams’ last meeting on November 3, 2019 are still with the team:
P Jake Bailey, LB Ja’Whaun Bentley, CB Justin Bethel, S Terrence Brooks, RB Rex Burkhead, DT Adam Butler, LB Shilique Calhoun, LS Joe Cardona, DT Byron Cowart, OT Korey Cunningham, C James Ferentz, K Nick Folk, CB Stephon Gilmore, DT Lawrence Guy, RB Damien Harris, WR N’Keal Harry, TE Ryan Izzo, CB J.C. Jackson, CB Jonathan Jones, G Shaq Mason, WR Jakobi Meyers, S Devin McCourty, CB Jason McCourty, WR Gunner Olszewski, LB John Simon, WR Matthew Slater, QB Jarrett Stidham, G Joe Thuney, RB James White, CB Joejuan Williams, LB Chase Winovich, DE Deatrich Wise Jr.
Offense: The biggest change for the Patriots offense is obviously the departure of quarterback Tom Brady, but is not the only one worth mentioning. The offensive line will have Isaiah Wynn, Michael Onwenu and David Andrews fill the starting spots at left and right tackle, center and right tackle, while the wide receiver room will be without Julian Edelman, Phillip Dorsett and Mohamed Sanu, who caught a touchdown last November. The tight ends will look completely different as well: gone are Benjamin Watson and Matt LaCosse, with Ryan Izzo and Jordan Thomas filling their roles. The backfield, meanwhile, will likely not have Sony Michel available and in turn see Damien Harris serve as the lead back.
Defense: This year’s offseason has impacted the Patriots defense quite a bit, with some of 2019’s cornerstone players leaving the club: Dont’a Hightower and Patrick Chung opted out; Kyle Van Noy, Jamie Collins, Elandon Roberts and Danny Shelton left in free agency; Duron Harmon was traded to Detroit. New England’s defensive turnover could become even more prominent in case Stephon Gilmore, Jonathan Jones and Terrence Brooks are out this week after missing Thursday’s practice.
Special teams: Long-time Patriots kicker Stephen Gostkowski was released this offseason, but he was on injured reserve the last time the team met the Ravens anyway. Instead the team relied on Nick Folk, who will be back this year as well. Two notable changes on special teams over the last 12 months were the departures of core coverage players Brandon Bolden (opt-out) and Nate Ebner (free agency).
Coaching staff: The Patriots no longer have the services of long-time offensive line coach Dante Scarnecchia, wide receivers/special teams coach Joe Judge and defensive line coach Bret Bielema available. The three men have been replaced, in that order, by O-line coaching duo Carmen Bricillo and Cole Popovich, Mick Lombardi (wide receivers) and Cam Achord (special teams), as well as DeMarcus Covington. New quarterbacks coach Jedd Fisch was also added, as was safeties coach and former coaching assistant Brian Belichick.
The following 33 players from the teams’ last meeting on November 3, 2019 are still with the team:
TE Mark Andrews, LB Chris Board, LB Tyus Bowser, WR Miles Boykin, TE Nick Boyle, G Bradley Bozeman, WR Marquise Brown, OT Orlando Brown Jr, S Chuck Clark, LS Morgan Cox, RB Gus Edwards, DE Jaylon Ferguson, LB L.J. Fort, QB Robert Griffin III, RB Justice Hill, CB Marlon Humphrey, RB Mark Ingram II, QB Lamar Jackson, LB Matt Judon, P Sam Koch, S Anthony Levine Sr, QB Trace McSorley, G Patrick Mekari, CB Marcus Peters, G Ben Powers, FB Patrick Ricard, S Jordan Richards, C Matt Skura, CB Jimmy Smith, WR Willie Snead IV, K Justin Tucker, DT Jihad Ward, DT Brandon Williams
Offense: While the majority of Baltimore’s offense is still intact, two starters along the offensive line will not be available on Sunday: offensive tackle Ronnie Stanley is on injured reserve, while guard Marshal Yanda announced his retirement during the offseason. D.J. Fluker and Patrick Mekari will help replace them. Other turnover since last November includes the addition of rookie running back J.K. Dobbins as well as the signing of wide receiver Dez Bryant to the practice squad.
Defense: The most prominent departure from the Ravens defense since last year is Earl Thomas, who was released in late August after an in-practice altercation with fellow safety Chuck Clark. Starting cornerback Brandon Carr also was let go during the offseason, while defensive tackle Michael Pierce signed with the Minnesota Vikings. Baltimore did find some solid replacement options, especially in the front seven. Calais Campbell, who is expected to miss Sunday’s game due to a calf injury, was signed as a free agent, Patrick Queen drafted in the first round, and Yannick Ngakoue acquired via trade from Jacksonville.
Special teams: Baltimore’s special teams unit is one of the most stable in the entire NFL, with the three specialists — Justin Tucker, Sam Koch and Morgan Cox — playing together since 2012. The coverage personnel also remained unchanged behind cornerstone players such as L.J. Fort, Anthony Levine, Chris Board, and ex-Patriot Jordan Richards.
Coaching staff: The Ravens’ staff alongside head coach John Harbaugh has remained mostly intact, with only a few minor changes since last year. Dan Parsons was added as assistant to the head coach, with Chris Hewitt moving from defensive backs coach to passing defense coordinator; Jesse Minter is now filling his old role. The rest of the staff has stayed the same since 2019.