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Ravens suffer big blow, perennial Pro Bowl guard Marshal Yanda to retire

The 2019 Baltimore Ravens were a great team that had a rough playoff ending. It’ll be tough to repeat their fantastic season. That’s just how the NFL works.

The Ravens’ first setback is losing one of their best players to retirement.

Guard Marshal Yanda, an eight-time Pro Bowler and Hall of Fame candidate, will retire this week according to Jamison Hensley of ESPN.

Yanda is 35 years old but still at the top of his game, and it’s a big loss for the defending AFC North champions.

Marshal Yanda was one of NFL’s best

Yanda, a third-round pick in 2007, has been a model of consistency for the Ravens.

He started from his rookie season on, 166 starts in total. He made eight Pro Bowls in the past nine seasons. The only time he didn’t make the Pro Bowl was 2017 when he played only two games due to injury.

Yanda was the No. 4 ranked guard in Pro Football Focus’ grades last season, and has been a PFF darling for seasons. He was a key reason the Ravens set an NFL record for rushing yards by a team in a season in 2019.

Given the Ravens’ rather unique offense, losing an elite guard might hurt Baltimore more than it would another team.

Baltimore Ravens offensive guard Marshal Yanda (73) spikes the football as he celebrates with teammates after running back Mark Ingram (21) scored. (AP Photo/Don Wright)

Ravens coming off 14-win season

The Ravens went 14-2 last season. Lamar Jackson won an MVP award. They were a balanced team that had a really bad playoff opener against the Tennessee Titans. But all signs were that the Ravens could pick up right where they left off.

But we have seen teams come and go in the NFL before. Injuries hit, key players leave in free agency, or sometimes a great player decides to retire. Nothing stays the same in the NFL.

The Ravens were going to have a tough time repeating 14 wins no matter what happened this offseason. And now they have to replace one of their best players.

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