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McKinnie’s Absence Raises Many Questions

Bryant, Where are you?

The Ravens off-season had it’s share of turmoil this season with contract issues, injuries, and Ed Reed. But as camp officially is now fully underway this week everything seems to have calmed down with Rice’s extension signed and Reed reporting on-time.

However, one huge question mark remains – Left Tackle Bryant McKinnie who did not show up to camp this past Thursday.

McKinnie was placed on the reserve/did not report list while Head Coach John Harbaugh had these comments.

“Well, he contacted us through a representative, He’s dealing with an issue right now. I don’t really want to speak for him on that. He can speak for himself on that.”

Harbaugh’s next words were interesting in regards to Right Tackle Michael Oher and the Ravens Offensive Line.

“Until further notice, he’s the left tackle, For the record, we’ve always believed Michael Oher is a left tackle here. I’m very comfortable with Mike at left tackle.”

So as of today Michael Oher is back to Left Tackle, and since that’s the case then who is the Right Tackle?

Before I attempt to speculate on the answer to that question let’s get back to McKinnie. What is his status with the team for 2012?

In March he picked up a $500,000 roster bonus after meeting with team officials and vowing to get into better shape for the coming year. McKinnie was then held out of mandatory mini-camp so he could focus on conditioning. Now McKinnie is the only Raven unaccounted for at the start of camp.

I’d be quick to agree that it might be time to move on from the seemingly unreliable Tackle but the Ravens are beset with injuries at this point on the line. Jah Reid is currently sidelined with a calf problem. Ramon Harewood just rolled his ankle yesterday while rookie Kelechi Osemele is out until Friday with a back issue.

That left undrafted Tackle Jack Cornell to run with the first team yesterday.

Right now Baltimore needs McKinnie. They need him to be in shape. They need him to be focused. They need him to solidify the Left side of the line so the offense can take another step forward.

If he doesn’t answer the call soon, the team will be forced to cut bait and look in another direction.

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