The New England Patriots will be facing a weakened offensive front for the Baltimore Ravens on Sunday with starting left tackle Ronnie Stanley officially being ruled as out for the game.
ESPN’s Jamison Hensley reported the news on Saturday that the former First-Team All-Pro offensive lineman didn’t travel with the team for Sunday’s road trip to Foxborough. It’s a notable absence that will leave quarterback Lamar Jackson’s blindside protected by backup tackle Patrick Mekari for a second straight game.
The Patriots could look to exploit that matchup with their bevy of edge rushers, including the dude with the red sleeves, three-time Pro Bowl linebacker Matthew Judon.
The Patriots have Matthew Judon and Ja’Whaun Bentley among their top edge players. Defenders have talked this week about the importance of eye-discipline (vs. run) and rush-lane integrity (vs. pass) … and will now look to execute those keys against a backup left tackle. https://t.co/eQOkidhIab
— Mike Reiss (@MikeReiss) September 24, 2022
Mekari held his own against the Miami Dolphins’ defensive front in Week 2, but the Patriots will present a stiffer challenge defensively. They have the personnel to cause problems up front for the 25-year-old reserve tackle.
There’s also serious speed with a surehanded group of tacklers capable of causing real problems for Jackson, who will constantly be searching for opportunities to scramble.
We recently published an article on the three key matchups to watch heading into Sunday’s game. With the recent news regarding Stanley’s injury status, the matchup between Mekari and Judon should be added to that list.