Thursday, March 6, 2014
Ravens free-agent rankings: No. 2
By Jamison Hensley
Let's continue the ranking of the Baltimore Ravens' 13 unrestricted free agents:
No. 2: Eugene Monroe
Position: Offensive tackle
The good: It was a significant upgrade when the Ravens replaced Bryant McKinnie with Monroe. Known for his athleticism and consistency, Monroe is considered one of the top two offensive tackles available in free agency, along with Kansas City's Branden Albert. Monroe has the agility to handle speed-rushers coming off the edge, as well as move down the line in zone-blocking schemes. Monroe is considered a good fit for what offensive line coach Juan Castillo wants to do.
The bad: Monroe's level of intensity was questioned during his time in Jacksonville. He's not a Pro Bowl player, but his value is expected to be inflated because he's a 26-year-old left tackle with upside. If Monroe can get $10 million per season, he would be among the top five highest-paid left tackles in the NFL.
The bottom line: With tight end Dennis Pitta retained, the Ravens' priority on the offensive side of the ball is to get Monroe re-signed before free agency begins Tuesday. This could be difficult to accomplish, even though Monroe enjoyed his time with the Ravens and his wife's family lives in the Baltimore area. Teams like the Miami Dolphins and Arizona Cardinals are expected to aggressively pursue offensive tackles in free agency. The Ravens might have to outbid multiple teams to keep him.