Rams release Max Starks, Ravens trade for Eugene Monroe

Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

With news of the benching of Mike Adams in favor of Kelvin Beachum, and the new availability of Max Starks combined with precedent of a trade for an offensive tackle, what's stopping the Steelers from making a move?

The St. Louis Rams released former Steelers offensive tackle Max Starks to make room for previously suspended Jo-Lonn Dunbar Tuesday, the team announced.

Dunbar violated the league's substance abuse policy concerning performance enhancing drugs, but claims to have mistakenly taken something that prompted a failed drug test. Starks' release from the Rams comes in wake of 11 sacks being allowed in their last two games (zero in the first two games, though). They've also dealt with some injuries, but apparently the 6-foot-8, 345-pound left tackle wasn't valuable enough to keep on the roster.

The Rams are 1-3, though. So taking their scraps shouldn't be something Pittsburgh is be too embarrassed to do. Starks might not have been very good in St. Louis, and he's certainly regressed from his days in black and gold, but it seems like anyone would be an improvement at this point. Left tackle is arguably the most important position on the field behind quarterback, and the Steelers have been sporting one of the worst in football in Mike Adams.

According to ESPN's Josina Anderson, Adams will be replaced by Kelvin Beachum in Week 6 against the New York Jets.

Apparently, Eugene Monroe was on the table and quickly snatched up by the Ravens for "multiple third-day draft picks" -- translated: rounds 5 through 7. For one of the better tackles in the league who is just 26 years old, that's a pretty nice deal even though Monroe is a free agent after the year.

Trading for a player like Monroe may not seem like a smart move for the Steelers, but Adams has been bad enough to put Ben Roethlisberger in harm's way many times so far this year. Is Beachum -- a seventh-round pick in 2012 -- much of an upgrade? How much long-term damage will be done in the short-term? Trading a 5th and 6th for a guy that could've curbed a good deal of that pressure and potential injury may not have been all that shortsighted. And maybe they could've resigned Monroe. Of course it's too late now, but hey, the Ravens might cut Bryant McKinnie. The only bright side for the Steelers is that the Ravens will have to deal with the negatives from the Monroe trade next year, and next year is pretty much the all the Steelers have at this point.

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