When Jah Reid arrived in the Ravens’ organization two draft classes ago, expectations were high. A 6’ 7" tackle from Central Florida, Ozzie Newsome felt the need to trade up in the third round to select him. Reports circulated that he was one of Newsome’s top rated tackles and the Ravens’ brass were astounded he was left at that point in the draft.
Jah Reid found himself in a great situation where the Ravens’ offensive line was in need of a right tackle with Michael Oher attempting to start on the blind side, Marshal Yanda moving to his natural position at right guard, and former right guard Chris Chester signing with the Washington Redskins during the offseason. Even though Reid had a solid camp, the whole situation was rushed due to the lockout and Bryant McKinnie would end up being signed to man one of the tackle spots.
All was not lost for Reid’s rookie season, however, as he would be used as a blocking tight end in goal line and short yardage situations. He played well in his limited time, and his potential was through the roof with that 6’ 7" 335 lb frame.
Then came Reid’s second season. Oher and McKinnie were the returning starters at tackle (or so we thought) and Ben Grubbs had left during the offseason for a nice hunk of change courtesy of the New Orleans Saints. This pushed Reid into the competition for the starting left guard spot. After an offseason of refining his inside technique, Reid would never really make an impression before the regular season due to a reported calf strain.
When the 2012 season kicked off, the starting left guard was not Reid, but rather Ramon Harewood. He would not last the season, however, as the left guard spot turned into a revolving door involving Harewood, Reid, and newcomer Bobbie Williams before the infamous playoff reshuffle that put Kelechi Osemele there for good.
Starting his third season, Jah Reid could be the odd man out on the offensive line. With Marhsal Yanda missing out on preseason work, Reid got the nod for right guard against the Atlanta Falcons, and played quite poorly. He and center A.Q. Shipley paired up to give constant inside pressure, limiting Ray Rice to 10 yards on 8 carries.
While Reid obviously has the size and strength to make it in the NFL, he lacks the technique. Despite coming from a small school, Reid can no longer be considered "raw" after two years of professional coaching. He does not stay low enough to create the leverage needed to move NFL players that are equally as big and strong as himself. He does not appear to have the quick feet needed to stop the edge rushers faced by offensive tackles either.
Unless Jah Reid refocuses himself, he may never become anything more than a low caliber offensive line back up.