The Ravens started last year with Alejandro Villanueva at right tackle. Then Patrick Mekari stepped in. Then Tyre Phillips. Then back to Mekari, and back to Phillips, with some David Sharpe snaps sprinkled in late.
After two-plus years of steady play under Orlando Brown Jr., the position was a picture of instability for much of a disappointing 8-9 season. Mekari’s play earned him a three-year contract extension, but the Ravens entered the offseason looking for more answers along their offensive line.
In signing free agent Morgan Moses to a three-year, $15 million deal, the Ravens acquired what they sorely lacked last season: a starting-level tackle who was as reliable as he was durable. Moses, 31, has not missed a game over his past seven seasons with the Washington Commanders and New York Jets, and has started all but one game in that span. Since becoming a full-time starter in 2015, he’s appeared in at least 90% of his team’s offensive snaps each season.
“He’s available all the time for you,” Ravens offensive line coach Joe D’Alessandris said Thursday at Moses’ introductory news conference. “He started seven consecutive years without missing a game — that’s huge as an offensive lineman. ... So he’s keeping the offense on the field [and] producing. So we’re excited to have Moses. He’s going to fill a void for us in that right tackle position, so that’s awesome.”
Moses’ availability is no accident. “You are the CEO of your body,” he said last year, and he invests smartly. He does hot yoga. He helps his recovery with cupping. On off days, he fits his 6-foot-6, 318-pound frame into a hot bath with Epsom salt.
In Baltimore, the hope is that the Ravens can pair Moses with Ronnie Stanley, an All-Pro in 2019 who’s recovering from his second straight season-ending ankle injury, as bookend tackles capable of protecting quarterback Lamar Jackson and uprooting defenders in the team’s ground game. Moses is considered a strong run blocker, and he allowed four sacks in 679 pass-blocking snaps last season, according to Pro Football Focus.
With Stanley’s health a question mark, center Bradley Bozeman a free agent and the left guard job up for grabs, the Ravens’ offensive line remains in flux, perhaps as much as it was a year ago. But at least along the right side, where guard Kevin Zeitler will return after a strong season, there is an expectation of stability.
“If he’s out there every day, and you have your whole group out there every day, we’re all going to get better — coach, player, player, coach,” D’Alessandris said. “And all of a sudden, you start developing a nice offensive line. So he has a lot of those qualities that we’re looking for, and he’s displayed them. So, this is huge for offensive line play.”
“You just don’t want to let guys down — that’s the thing of it,” Moses said. “If you feel like your 70% is better than the guy behind you, then you should be out there to be able to play. I want to be one of those guys that people can depend on and count on and show leadership qualities. That’s what’s kind of driven me over my career to just be able to be out there every game.”
Moses, who’s played on just one playoff team over his eight-year career, said it was important to play “meaningful football” this late in his career. And after playing for teams whose quarterback situations turned into weekly adventures, he was happy to have Jackson to protect. Moses was already resigned to his children wearing Jackson’s Ravens jersey this fall, not his.
“For me, obviously, this franchise has a history of being in the playoffs year after year,” he said. “Obviously, with all the injuries that happened last year, things happen, but … this is not an organization that is not a playoff-ready team. They have all the pieces. You see them working in free agency, [and] they’ll be working in the draft. I’m just excited to be here and be a part of it.”