Monroe makes strong first impression

OWINGS MILLS, Md. -- How Eugene Monroe plays on the field will determine whether this is a successful trade for the Baltimore Ravens. But Monroe couldn't have made a better first impression in his seven-minute chat with reporters Thursday.

passes the eye-ball test. He's big and athletic. There will be no issues about working out like past Ravens tackles (Bryant McKinnie and Jared Gaither).

It was apparent that Monroe takes his job seriously. When he heard about the trade from his agent, he was watching film of the Jaguars' next opponent on his night off. Guess he's not a party bus-type of a guy.

He's genuinely excited about coming to a winner but he made it clear not to disparage his time with the Jaguars. He was complimentary of Luke Joeckel, who was drafted to replace him, and expressed confidence that the Jaguars will turn things around as a franchise.

Monroe also comes across as extremely intelligent, which significantly increases his chances of playing Sunday at Miami. When he was coming off the field after his first walk-through with the team, he was already talking to run-game coordinator Juan Castillo about the offensive system.

"Overcoming the learning curve and getting acclimated with how things are done around here is going to be a big challenge," Monroe said.

But, after listening to Monroe, you get the sense that he's up for the challenge.