Bryant McKinnie-Baltimore Ravens Deal Made Too Much Sense for Both Sides

By Thomas Emerick

After playing hard to get for a few few weeks — while the Baltimore Ravens sat back and let him court other teams — Bryant McKinnie has agreed to a two-year deal with the reigning champs according to The Baltimore Sun’s Aaron Wilson. The veteran left tackle was the remaining hole left on the Ravens’ starting offensive line.

“McKinnie struck a deal to remain with the Super Bowl champions after drawing offers and visiting the Miami Dolphins and San Diego Chargers and drawing interest from the Dallas Cowboys,” Wilson said.

The only other starting spot on the offensive that now differs from last year is at center, where Matt Birk retired and will ostensibly be replaced by his understudy Gino Gradkowski. It was rumored that the Ravens might trade up in the 2013 NFL Draft to take Lane Johnson — who would go to the Philadelphia Eagles at pick No. 4 — but my guess is that was just posturing.

This deal just made too much sense for both McKinnie and the Ravens.

Baltimore wasn’t going to move Michael Oher from right tackle back to left; they had seen that movie too many times before and it doesn’t end well. Meanwhile, the Ravens boast arguably the league’s best guard tandem in LG Kelechi Osemele and RG Marshal Yanda. Pro Football Focus graded Yanda out as its top pass-blocking right guard in 2012 while Osemele improved drastically during the playoff run.

The more time the better for handsomely paid quarterback Joe Flacco, who according to PFF threw for 16 touchdowns and zero interceptions on balls thrown at least through 20 yards through the air last year.

Thomas Emerick is a Senior Writer for Follow him on Twitter @ThomasEmerick, “Like” him on Facebook or add him to your network on Google

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