Vincent interested in the Ravens

OWINGS MILLS -- While the Baltimore Ravens are mulling over the NFL market after completing two blockbuster deals, offensive guard Keydrick Vincent remains in a sell mode.<br><br> And the Pittsburgh Steelers' unrestricted free agent lineman said he's highly interested in blocking for the Ravens next season. <br><br>The Ravens have conducted discussions regarding Vincent, but haven't made a formal offer yet, according to Vincent's agent, Ken Zuckerman.

"I would love to play for the Ravens because I love the intensity they bring to the game," said Vincent, a 6-foot-5, 325-pound fourth-year pro who became a starter for Pittsburgh last season when Kendall Simmons blew out his knee. "I played against Jamal Lewis in the Florida-Georgia all-star game in high school, and I can still remember how hard he ran.

"I love the way he plays the game. He's going to run the ball hard. Their physical style fits my style of play, which is to be aggressive and knock you down."

The Ravens have filled their cornerback and receiver vacancies by signing former Tennessee Titans starters Samari Rolle and Derrick Mason to $30.5 million and $20 million contracts, respectively.

They are still in need of an offensive guard to replace right guard Bennie Anderson, who isn't expected to be retained.

Vincent was supposed to visit the Cleveland Browns on Monday, but missed his connecting flight from Atlanta. The Browns had already signed former Tampa Bay guard Cosey Coleman, but still wanted Vincent to fly to Cleveland on Tuesday morning just in case Coleman failed his physical.

Vincent declined to make the trip and got back on the last flight Monday to Orlando. He's now back at home waiting for the phone to ring, hoping it's the Ravens on the line.

"I'm just waiting right now," Vincent said. "I hope someone pulls the trigger soon. Hopefully, it will be Baltimore. It's exciting."

The Atlanta Falcons are among a few other teams that have demonstrated interest in Vincent, who started 16 games last season after starting nine in 2003.

The Ravens last talked with the agent for Indianapolis free agent guard Rick DeMulling on Saturday. DeMulling is viewed as a more expensive prospect than Vincent. He visited Detroit on Tuesday, and the Lions are apparently willing to approach the $9 million signing bonus that the Dallas Cowboys paid to guard Marco Rivera.

Other interior line options include St. Louis Rams center-guard Matt Lehr.

Vincent, who turns 27 April 13, made the Steelers' 53-man roster as an undrafted free agent in 2001. He has played left and right offensive guard.

The Steelers went 15-1 in the regular season and averaged 154 rushing yards per game, second-best in the league, as rookie quarterback Ben Roethlisberger went undefeated as a starter before a playoff loss to the Super Bowl champion New England Patriots.

Vincent is from Lakeland, Fla., the same hometown as Ravens All-Pro linebacker Ray Lewis.

"Ray is a nice guy, I love the way he plays with so much intensity," said Vincent, a Parade All-American as an all-state defensive lineman at Lake Gibson High School. "It would be great to be on his team."

Vincent said he's likely to take a few more visits with none currently scheduled before making up his mind, but said he would prefer to play for Baltimore.

"That would be a great opportunity if it happens," Vincent said. "I know they love to run the football."

NOTES: Ravens free agent linebacker Ed Hartwell is negotiating with the Arizona Cardinals after the Kansas City Chiefs signed former Steelers linebacker Kendrell Bell to a seven-year deal that averages $5 million per year with $10 million in guaranteed money. Hartwell's other options include the Seattle Seahawks and Atlanta. ... Former Dolphins receiver David Boston is interested in the Ravens, but it's unlikely the interest is mutual and he's more likely to be reunited with receivers coach Jerry Sullivan with the San Francisco 49ers.

As well as a being a long time contributor to RavensInsider, Aaron Wilson writes for the Carroll County Times in Westminster Maryland.

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