Harbaugh: It's A Fine Line In This League

First-year Ravens coach John Harbaugh took some time to talk with the Indianapolis media this week. See what he had to say about receiver Derrick Mason, the importance of getting solid quarterback play, his relationship with offensive coordinator Cam Cameron, and more!

On WR-Derrick Mason being so consistent and sliding under the radar to a certain extent:

"I don't think he slides under the radar with defenses and football people around the NFL. I think everybody knows how well he's played for the last 12 years. And probably, at this stage of his career, playing the best he's ever played, really."

On Derrick Mason telling QB-Joe Flacco if he wants the ball caught, throw it to him:

"That's what great receivers do, they have that mentality, right? And Joe does have a lot of confidence in Mase (Mason)."

On hoping Joe Flacco solidifies things at the position:

"We have high hopes for Joe. We have big plans for the way he progresses as we go forward So, yes."

On how it impacts a team going forward when you don't have a QB:

"I think it's pretty well documented how important it is to have a really effective quarterback. You go back to Indianapolis in 1994, 95, 96. I think they had a really good quarterback in place (brother, Jim Harbaugh). He played really well for them. It makes everybody better. It makes the receivers better, it makes the defense better, it makes the special teams better believe it or not. A good quarterback just makes everybody play better and that's the value of it."

On when you don't have ‘the guy' at QB, are you always searching?:

"It's a fine line in this league to win games, and the fact that he makes your whole team better by virtue of what a quarterback brings to the table and the plays that he can make, it makes everything that much tougher if you don't have that guy."

On DE-Robert Mathis:

"I think he, like the rest of the defense basically, it's kind of their style. They're not trying to out-weigh anybody. Basically, they're trying to out-run you. They are fast, aggressive, gang-tackling, they strip the ball really well, a lot of movement, a lot of very active players. It's very clear-cut the type of defense they want to be, and you turn on the tape and you can see it."

On Robert Mathis' motor:

"Yes, but it's hard for anybody's motor to stand out on that defense. That defense, every single guy on the defense has a high motor. It's just a high-motor group."

On the Colts passing game being a little off and if you see that on tape:

"We see what we've always seen. You see Peyton Manning, you see all of his receivers, you see the tight end, you see the running back, you see the offensive. You just see a very dangerous offense."

On if he thinks WR-Marvin Harrison is not quite what he once was:

"I see Harrison out there being as dangerous as he ever was."

On his relationship with Cam Cameron:

"Cam and our family really go way, way back. When Cam was a young coach at Michigan, even a graduate assistant coach, he was there when Jim (Harbaugh) was there and he was involved in coaching Jim. And they have been really close ever since, and because of that relationship, he and I got to know each other and got to be friends and colleagues. And then of course the year at Indiana really solidified all of that, and we've been pretty close ever since. And when Cam was with the Chargers, and Jim was out there after he got done playing, they were next-door neighbors for a couple of years. So we would go out there and visit and hang out with the Camerons, Missy and the kids, all the time, so that's always been there. And obviously he did so well at San Diego and then went to Miami and faced some challenges there. The Lord works in mysterious ways. It just worked out, so it seems like this was the best thing for everybody. I just feel blessed and pleased that he's a part of this staff. His input—and not just as an offensive coach, that goes without saying; he's a proven, tremendous offensive coach in this league, and I think as a friend, as a mentor, the experience he brings, both head coaching and assistant coaching—has just been beyond value for us."

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