What down year? Jalen Ramsey finishes as PFF’s 3rd-best CB

Ever since last postseason, a narrative developed suggesting Jalen Ramsey is no longer a shutdown cornerback or one of the best at his position. He didn’t necessarily play his best during the Rams’ Super Bowl run last January, and his start to the 2022 season was below even his own standards, but that doesn’t mean he had a down year.

In fact, if you compare it to his 2021 campaign, he was actually better this season than he was a year ago, according to Pro Football Focus.

Thanks to a stellar performance in the season finale against the Seahawks, Ramsey finished the year with an 86.4 overall grade from PFF. That’s higher than the 84.4 grade he received in 2021 and is the second-best season grade of his career.

There were a lot of good performances by cornerbacks around the league this year, but only two earned higher grades than Ramsey in 2022: Sauce Gardner and Patrick Surtain II.

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It wasn’t all perfect for the Rams’ star cornerback in 2022. He’ll admit that himself. For instance, he allowed a career-high seven touchdown receptions in coverage, which is a big reason fans seemed to sour on him this season. His 712 yards allowed were 161 fewer than he gave up last season and he tied last year’s interception total with four.

And just before 2022 ended, he reminded everyone just how talented he is. Against DK Metcalf and the Seahawks, he was dominant in coverage and as a run defender.

He gave up just one catch (three targets) to Metcalf for 6 yards, intercepting one pass that was intended for the Seahawks’ top receiver. Ramsey added a second interception later in the game, his fourth of the season.

And against the run, Ramsey made one of the plays of the day when he chased down Kenneth Walker on an outside run near the goal line, preventing what would’ve been a go-ahead touchdown.

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Ramsey may not have been named a Pro Bowler, but he still had a season deserving of that honor. He was once again one of the best cornerbacks in the league this year, even if he did give up too many big plays in coverage.

His performance in Week 18 was a good reminder of that.

Story originally appeared on Rams Wire