Calais Campbell believes the Ravens give him the ‘best shot’ at winning a Superbowl
The acquisition of five-time Pro Bowl defensive end Calais Campbell from the Jacksonville Jaguars for the mere price of a fifth-round pick has the potential to be the Baltimore Ravens’ most impactful of the entire offseason. He brings a tremendous amount of talent, leadership, and experience that could help not just the defense but the team as a whole reach their ultimate goal of winning a championship.
The Ravens were the best team in the league during the regular season last year but didn’t deliver on their promising potential in the postseason, losing to the Tennessee Titans in the divisional round. They are viewed as one of the top Superbowl contending teams and Campbell believes that they are equipped with everything they need to get the job done in 2020.
“Honestly, it’s a great situation to be in,” Campbell told SiriusXM NFL Radio over the weekend. “The team is very, very talented. You look at Baltimore’s roster up and down and there’s talent everywhere. Throughout the draft, we got even stronger at some of the positions where we needed help. I’m really excited about the opportunity.”
Entering his 13th year in the league, Campbell finds himself on his third team, is playing the best football of his career, and is on arguably the most talented roster he’s ever been and that’s saying a lot considering he’s played in three conference title games and one Superbowl. As a rookie in 2008, Campbell was a member of the Arizona Cardinals’ team that came up just shy of the ultimate glory in Superbowl XLIII (43) when lost to the Pittsburgh Steelers 27-23 and hasn’t made it back to the big game since then.
“I’ve been playing football for 12 years and I’ve been close a bunch — you know, I’ve played in what, three championships games, one Super Bowl — but I haven’t been able to win it yet. So, I feel like, this team, as talented as it is, this is probably going to be the best shot I have. And so, my mindset is just embrace it, treat every moment special and make each moment count.”
Campbell has come close to punching his ticket back to the Superbowl on two separate occasions on two different teams since his rookie year. He was on the Carson Palmer led Cardinals team that got blown in the 2015 NFC championship game by the Carolina Panthers. In his first year with the Jacksonville Jaguars, he recorded a career-high 14.5 sacks and was crowned the Mayor of the tenacious Sacksonville defense that made it all the AFC title game but narrowly lost to the New England Patriots.
He knows that nothing is guaranteed or carried over from year to year in the NFL and that making it all the way to the Superbowl is never assured and shouldn’t be taken for granted.
“I have some experience I can share with the guys,” Campbell said. “You know, cause going 14-2, but not winning, you don’t get to start back at 14-2, you gotta start back at 0-0. You have to earn your way to that level again. I feel like I have a lot of experience over the years of the good and bad and just how to prepare and stay focused.”
“It really comes down to execution and just setting yourself apart. During this time right now with COVID when it all became virtual, nobody can go into the building. Right now, it really comes down to maturity, who’s gonna put the time in, who’s gonna put the effort in to be able to put themselves in position when we do come back not to miss a bit. Be able to just pick up and go. I don’t know if a lot of people are doing that right now, but I really feel like in Baltimore, we’re in a really good position.”
With all of the talent that will line up next to Campbell on the defensive line and behind him at linebacker and in the secondary, not to mention all of the offensive firepower on the opposite side of the ball with reigning league MVP Lamar Jackson and company, he could be spot on with his assertion that the Ravens offer him his best chance at not only making it to the Superbowl but sealing the deal with a win as well.