Ravens Talking to Top Interior Lineman

With the loss of Tony Pashos through free agency and Jonathan Ogden's future uncertain, the Ravens will likely need to use one of their top picks on an offensive tackle this year. But at the Combine, they met with one of the country's top interior linemen. Find out more inside...

During my recent interview with Hawaii center Samson Satele that will be published at Scout.com this week, he mentioned that the Ravens are one of the teams that have shown interest in him. During the NFL Combine, Baltimore scheduled a formal interview with the 6-foot-2, 300-pound lineman who was a three-year starter primarily at left guard before switching to center for his senior year.

Projected as one of the top two centers in the country, he'd be a terrific addition to the Ravens offensive line, especially with an aging Mike Flynn entering his 10th NFL season.

Satele is the kind of player who could be a rookie starter if need be, but the potential problem for the Ravens is that he's expected to be a first or second-round pick in this year's NFL Draft. And if the Ravens have to wait until late in the second round to select Satele due to their now-shaky situation at offensive tackle, he'll likely already be packing his bags for another NFL city by then.

Take a look at what Satele brings to the table and why the Ravens might be tempted to go after him first, and then address their offensive tackle situation second. While I don't think Baltimore can afford to do it, there's no debating that Satele's a rare talent with some valuable intangibles that just might tempt Baltimore to take that risk.

Scout.com Draft Snapshot: Samson Satele

(Photo: CW Pack Sports)

The Buzz: Considered to be one of the top two centers in this draft even though he was primarily a three-year starter at left guard until his senior year ... strong, aggressive player who has terrific footwork and is highly alert, using his peripheral vision well from the center position ... "What makes Sam special is his attitude. He's not your typical O-lineman standing there to protect. He's not this happy-go-lucky guy. He goes out there and he punishes you. When you have some of the toughest, baddest D-linemen trying to get you, it's nice to have a center like Sam, who's twice as nasty and twice as mean. He's punishing D-linemen all game." -- Hawaii QB Colt Brennan ... "If you play in June Jones' system, you know how to pass-block. "That is not a skill for a lot of (college linemen).  A lot of (prospects) are solid run-blockers, but they don't have an idea how to pass block." -- Jerry Jones, draft analyst ... Very smart, makes good offensive line adjustments before the snap ...  "I would be hard-pressed to find a better center in college football. He's a complete center." -- Hawaii offensive line coach Dennis McKnight who was an NFL offensive lineman for 10 years.

Noteworthy: Started every game for the Warriors beginning his freshman year, setting a record at Hawaii with 53 consecutive starts ... Ran the 20-yard shuttle in 4.29 seconds and recorded a vertical jump of 33 1/2 at the NFL Combine, both of which were top scores amongst offensive linemen ... In high school, lettered three times in basketball and in track (shotput, discus) and was his high school's Athlete of the Year for the 2000 - 2001 school year --  All-WAC first team his senior year ... During his 53-game career at Hawaii, he was credited with 177 knockdown blocks. 

For more on Samson Satele, visit his player profile page.

A member of the Professional Football Writers of America, Ed Thompson's NFL and college football player interviews have been published across the Scout.com network and syndicated through FoxSports.com's NFL team pages.

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