OWINGS MILLS, Md. – The Baltimore Ravens traded for Eugene Monroe in October hoping to solidify a left tackle position that had been unstable since Jonathan Ogden retired following the 2007 season.
Six months later, the Ravens have effectively done that.
Baltimore and the 26-year old Monroe agreed to terms on a 5-year contract Tuesday that will keep Monroe with the Ravens for the foreseeable future.
"Up until you don't have a left tackle, you don't appreciate it," General manager Ozzie Newsome said Wednesday. "We've been fortunate enough to have that (with Ogden). And now to have someone like Eugene at the age that he's at right now and with the promise that he has going forward that that's something that we don't have to address for a long time."
Monroe was picked by the Jacksonville Jaguars with the No. 8 overall pick in 2009 and spent four-plus years with the Jaguars before being traded to the Ravens.
Baltimore gave up fourth- and fifth-round picks in this year's draft in that trade.
"I think probably the fact that we gave up the draft picks was already an indication that we felt really good about Eugene, really from the draft back when we evaluated coming out of college and then what we've seen in Jacksonville," Ravens coach John Harbaugh said. "But there's nothing been confirmation since then."
Monroe started the final 11 games of 2013 for Baltimore at left tackle.
"Eugene came in in a tough spot during the season," Harbaugh said. "It hasn't happened very often where a player comes in during the season and gets plugged in at the left tackle position. And for him to play the way he did just shows you what kind of player he is and what kind of person he is."
Monroe had interest from other teams, but he emphasized to his agent throughout this process that his preference was to remain with the Ravens.
Monroe's wife is from Maryland. Monroe himself is from nearby New Jersey and went to college at Virginia.
"There could be no better situation for me to be in," Monroe said.
But Monroe is also happy from a football standpoint.
At one point Wednesday, Monroe said that he has never won a championship at any level of his football career.
He feels like the Ravens give him a chance to win that first championship.
"This just made the most sense career-wise and family-wise," Monroe said. "There's no other place that I felt could have gone and gotten all the things that I'm offered here. .
"Business-wise, you have to listen to that and understand what else is out there for you. But ultimately, this was the best place for me, and I'm very glad it worked out here."