Baltimore Ravens: Michael Oher to Remain at Left Tackle
When the Baltimore Ravens drafted offensive tackle Michael Oher in the first round of the 2009 NFL draft, it was apparent that they would make him the team's franchise left tackle. The process of starting Oher at left tackle did not happen very fast, as he has played the majority of his career at right tackle.
But with starting left tackle Bryant McKinnie struggling, the Ravens decided to give Oher the start at left tackle in the season opener on Monday against the Bengals. Now, NFL.com is reporting that the Ravens are moving forward with Oher at left tackle.
The decision to allow Oher to start at left tackle for an extended period of time means the team is not confident in McKinnie, who barely touched the field on Monday night. With Oher now on the left side of the offensive line, rookie Kelechi Osemele appears primed to be the starting right tackle moving forward.
Osemele, who originally was competing for the starting left guard job, exceeded expectations in the season opener, as he had very few negative plays at right tackle. For learning that he would be starting on short notice, Osemele's performance was a promising sign.
Despite the impressive performance, Osemele could still get moved at any time. Since he can play guard as well, he may have to move to the guard position if either Ramon Harewood or Bobbie Williams suffer an injury.
If Osemele begins to struggle, the Ravens may also take away his starting job. At any moment, the team may decide to move Oher back to right tackle and allow McKinnie to reassert himself at left tackle.
Osemele would have to play fairly poorly for that to happen, but it's certainly a possible scenario.
If Oher and Osemele both have success at their respective positions this season, the Ravens may have the two starting tackle positions solidified for years to come.
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