The Baltimore Ravens’ season is at stake. And while I expect them to come out of week 5 with a victory over the Miami Dolphins, their newly acquired left tackle Eugene Monroe must be one of the big reasons why.
The Ravens earlier this week traded a fourth round draft pick and a fifth round draft pick in the 2014 NFL draft to the Jacksonville Jaguars to obtain Monroe. It is the first time the Ravens’ franchise history that the organization made a trade during the regular season. That should tell everyone what kind of emergency they are in along the offensive line.
Starting Bryant McKinnie once again at left tackle doesn’t make any sense at this point in time because he hasn’t earned a starting spot on the team this season. For the third season in a row with the Ravens, McKinnie is not finishing off his blocks in the running game which and when you combine that with the rest of the offensive line slumping, it has caused Ray Rice and Bernard Pierce to suffer in the running game.
You could make the argument that nobody on the offensive line has earned a starting spot this year including Ravens’ pro bowl left guard Marshal Yanda. The offensive line needs a spark. They have allowed Joe Flacco to get sacked 12 times this year while providing nothing in the running game as the Ravens are averaging 64 yards rushing a game which is ranked 28th in the NFL.
I’m very confident in Monroe’s ability and I think he will be the future left tackle for the Ravens for the next several years. Monroe is catching up on the playbook and even though may not know much about the offense, I expect him to give a better effort than what McKinnie has provided so far this season. It is a risk I’m willing to take.