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Sam Baker's Long Leash At Left Tackle

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There have been times over the last three seasons when you wondered if Sam Baker would keep his starting job.

The screw-ups tend to linger with us, so Baker has earned a special kind of scorn from Falcons fans. His penalties, his tendency to let people streak by him at exactly the wrong moment, his penchant for the bearhug? Those add up to a guy who ends up somewhat maligned.

Does Baker deserve it? That's tougher to answer. I think he's a competent left tackle prone to the occasional mental lapse, which describes better than half of the left tackles in the NFL today. The Falcons could do better, but in the short-term, they're not likely to. That means Baker has a longer leash than some might like.

What I'd like to hear is your thoughts on Baker, his effectiveness and what kind of job security you believe he has. Go!