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Ravens Insider Defends Patrick Queen Over Unfair Criticism

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Patrick Queen

The Baltimore media has constantly bashed Patrick Queen since he signed with the Pittsburgh Steelers in March. The main narrative is that Queen won’t be the same player without Roquan Smith by his side.

“I don’t know if (Queen) can be the guy without Roquan Smith. … I think Steelers Nation is going to be a little bit disappointed,” Rob Long of 1.057 The Fan in Baltimore said on 93.7 The Fan in March.

In 2023, Queen played in all 17 games, racking up 133 tackles, nine tackles for loss, 3.5 sacks, six quarterback hits, six passes defended, one interception and one forced fumble. He was named a second-team All-Pro and was selected to the AFC Pro Bowl squad, his first career honor in each category.

“He’s a former first-round pick who had his struggles,” Eric Eager of SumerSports said on Brian Batko of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette’s Chipped Ham and Football podcast. “And then they brought a guy in like Roquan Smith to kind of help him out, and Patrick Queen was able to shine. … Can he thrive in a linebacker room where he is going to have to be the top guy now? He struggled in that role in Baltimore. Can he emerge? He’s still a young guy.”

Pittsburgh Steelers Patrick Queen

Pittsburgh Steelers linebacker Patrick Queen at OTAs, May 28, 2024 – Ed Thompson / Steelers Now

In a recent mailbag on The Athletic, Ravens insider Jeff Zrebiec defended Queen over the criticism. He thinks the narrative that he needs to play with Smith in order to be successful is unfair.

“People tend to forget that Queen was one of the youngest players in the league when the Ravens drafted him, and he didn’t play much college football. There were going to be growing pains, and they were probably exacerbated because middle linebacker is a glamour position in Baltimore. But I think this notion that Queen needed Smith to arrive so he could improve is unfair,” Zrebiec wrote.

“After a slow start in 2022, Queen started to play much better before the Smith trade was made. He was improving. Did the presence of Smith help Queen get to another level? Sure. That’s how it works. Playing alongside great players tends to raise your level, too. I think Queen will be just fine in those roles. He’s a smarter, more experienced and explosive player than he was two years ago.”

In his introductory press conference with the Steelers, Queen embraced the villain role. Promising to shakeup the Steelers-Ravens rivalry.

“It’s going to be weird, but I want to be that villain. I want to be that guy. I’m looking to do some stuff to them,” Queen said.

In an exclusive interview with Derrick Bell of Steelers Now, Patrick Queen revealed an interesting nugget on why he signed with the Steelers in free agency. According to Queen, he had opportunities to earn more money elsewhere but chose Pittsburgh because he is focused on winning right now.