WESTMINSTER -- Our latest installment of questions and answers about the defending AFC North champions:
Hey aaron, what kind of role do you see Antwan Barnes havingthis year? Do you think he will see the field more than 3-4 times a game?
I think he'll get a legitimate shot at becoming the situational pass rusher on third downs in the sub package. He won't be the exclusive rusher, but he'll get five to six chances per game ideally to make something happen. As you saw against the Eagles, he's very talented.
1,0what about Grubbs do you think he will start if chester unseats Flynn mid season?
I think it's a more likely scenario that Ben Grubbs could eventually supplant Chris Chester and Mike Flynn retains his job. Chester hasn't really been all that impressive in my opinion. Grubbs is coming on strong. Keep an eye on this budding competition.
1,0Has Figurs look as bad as he did last night all camp?
It rivaled his camp performances. He's a project at receiver, but I think he can emerge as a good return specialist. Honestly, if you look at his numbers, three punt returns for 35 yards, including an 18-yarder, and one kickoff return for 28 yards, it was pretty solid. He needs seasoning and confidence and more toughness. I don't think he's ready for this yet, but he's got tons of potential. Yes, camp has been a struggle at timesHis consistency just isn't there yet, but it wasn't there at Kansas State, either.
1,0With about a billion and a half threads suggesting that we should cut Vincent I have always said it wasnt going to happen an wasnt a good idea. Do you think it might happen?
I doubt they will cut him. He's affordable at $1.6 million this year, he's in great shape and has accepted the demotion pretty well and he represents valuable starting experience in reserve. If Chris Chester or Jason Brown or Ben Grubbs got hurt, would you prefer Brian Rimpf? I think Vincent is the best alternative behind the starters and is likely to make the team.
I didnt get to se a whole lot of Rolle last night, but does it look like he can step it up? I think if he can we wont even care about losing AD as much as people thought.
Did any thinking change on who stays and who will be cut? Some surprises last night.
6,0Do yyou think they will et Barnes & Burgess play against the steelers... Man what fun they could have with Rothlesberger
I think Samari Rolle has played better this training camp, I doubt he'll struggle as markedly as he did a year ago.
I thought it might help Cory Ross' cause. He really played well, but the numbers aren't really in his favor this time around.
I would think that Antwan Barnes and Prescott Burgess will play primarily on special teams, with Barnes potentially operating as a situational pass rusher. Burgess is more of a versatile all-around linebacker type.
I am pretty sure the ravens will keep at least Mason, Clayton, Dwill, and Figurs as WR's. Does it look like Moore or darling will grab the other spot. How about Matt willis or Damien Linson.
6,0What was the overal opinion from the coaches, team about last night
It's neck and neck between Devard Darling and Clarence Moore. My gut tells me that Moore will stay and maybe even Darling, too.
They should cut one of them, and I would get rid of Darling. I doubt that there's room for Matt Willis or Damien Linson on the active roster. It looks like the practice squad, if that.
The coaching staff and players were really encouraged, but not really surprised by the performance. I think this team is really growing in confidence each week and could be primed to do something if the running game and Steve McNair comes through and the defense doesn't take a step backwards.
6,0Figurs as WR? r special teams ???
Special teams, not a very good wide receiver at this point.
The Ravens view him as a two-year project at receiver.
6,0thats what I thought.. Is Olson gone?
Probably so, although he's still practice squad eligible.
6,0With all the good news I hear about Gaither, will he see much field time this season
This is a little off topic, but maybe by the end of the third pre season game you should have an idea of what the final roster will look like.
Would it be possible for you to post what, in your opinion, should look like. I think it would be interesting to compare what you think and what the FO thinks.
Only if Jonathan Ogden is out, or if they decide to supplant Adam Terry. At this point, Gaither is really valuable insurance.
I can definitely do a roster overview for you guys with comments. Let's allow things to percolate a little first.
aaron, has the camp this year been any different from years past? has coach billick been more layed back or harder on the team?
Thanks. Do you think there is a chance that Gaither will take over for Terry when Ogden comes back? Will the team even allow
6,0How is JO's Toe? is He going to play? I keep hearing YES but I wonder?
It has been easier than even years ago when it was first dubbed Camp Creampuff.
Team officials haven't ruled out letting Gaither compete with Adam Terry, but they can't afford to do so now because J.O. is still on the mend.
J.O.'s toe is getting better. He's been doing pass sets and doesn't look like he's limping the way he used to when he reported to camp. Part of this is letting J.O. as a veteran who nearly retired ease into camp.
6,0Have we ever had as many good backups? seems more of a comfort zone this year
This might be the deepest team we've seen around here since 2000. I think the good drafts are really beginning to stockpile talent on the roster. Ozzie Newsome and Eric DeCosta should be commended.
Along with the other scouts who scour the nation looking for prospects like Edgar Jones from Southeast Missouri.
Next question, please.
6,0what do you see as still being weak spots?
Depth at wide receiver, depth at cornerback, depth at safety, a lack of experienced depth at offensive tackle, a lack of big-play capability outside besides Demetrius Williams, short kickoffs, no breakaway threat in the running game.
6,0As a Ravens fan living in Bill's territory I was wondering if Willis looked good in purple?
From what I say last night it seemed like mcgahee had break away speed. Is that false? i dont mean that he is fast than everyone
onthe field, but he does seem to be A LOT faster than Jamal.
I thought that McGahee had a pretty credible debut.
I would say that he's faster than Jamal, but remember he had like three runs or something over 20 yards last season. A true
breakaway runner creates at least a few long runs per season. I think he's more of a first-down producer, which is fine.
6,0How are we stacking up compared to other teams? Is this SUperbowl year?
He's an upgrade at this point, in my opinion, but I want to see him pick up some tough yards against the Steelers before I make a
If you were gonig to predict this years record, would you say we make the playoffs or fall short? I am thinking 11-5 with the bengals at 10-6
I haven't been to the other camps, but, on paper, this is a real contender. They should be able to get to the AFC title game. Injuries determine most of who makes it and we don't know who's going to be healthy by the postseason. Plus, the Patriots, San Diego and the Colts are stiff competition. My gut instinct tells me they advance further this year, but fall short again barring a breakthrough season for the offense.
I've been saying 10-6 or 11-5 so we share that assessment. I think Cincinnati will be 9-7.
Pittsburgh will be 8-8 or 7-9, but competitive and feistier than lat year.
Cleveland is still Cleveland.
6,0Any word on the Suggs front?
oh, forgot about suggs.. yes, are they coming closer?
It's been really quiet, and Suggs isn't worried about it. Plus, he's already making $5 million this year since he triggered that escalator clause. At some point, it will happen. Maybe during the season. No deal is imminent, though.
any word on PJ daniels?
Mild hamstring strain, according to the team and P.J. Isn't regarded as serious. Same thing for Chris Chester's sprained foot.
how do you think the strong performances by Ross and Pruitt affect PJ...if at all?
They escaped the game relatively unscathed by injuries.
I think P.J. has had a really strong camp, I don't think it's going to unseat him. Remember, they have money in P.J.. I think nearly $400,000 in a signing bonus last year. I think he's a better overall player than those guys.
good. i'm anxious to see him. i think he got a bad name last year of having "fumble-itis" when it wasn't all that bad
Does PJ have any speed, or is he strictly a "power runner' who can catch.
6,0Did anyone get banged up last night? didn't here much
It was overblown. He has corrected how he carries the football and isn't as nervous as he was last year as a rookie.
P.J. has a little bit of speed. Not great, but something.
what's up with Musa? he seems like a practice squad player as of late. any inside scoop?
Who has the most speed of all the running backs?
wayupnorth, if you missed it, aaron said that the only actual injuries was PJ's strained hammy in warmups, and chester's sprained foot. both considered minor
Musa seems to be sluggish, perhaps slowed down by the neck surgery in the offseason. Musa insists that he's fine, but I don't agree.
I think something is wrong with him.
The fastest running back is probably Cory Ross.
where do you think ross and pruitt fit into this team?
I really hope both make it at least ot the ps.
I think they are practice squad candidates.
i think ross has a chance of being picked up by another team
he got a decent amount of playing experience last year, and is young and healthy.
a team like...well, the eagles need running back depth
I think Ross is solid all-around, just little.
6,0Sounds like we are going to even have a good practice squad! darn I wouldn't want the job of deciding who to cut
i was impressed with the play of barnes and burgess last night. it's my guess that barnes is going to be used similarly to how suggs
was used in his rookie year. do you agree?
I think his role could be a little less extensive than Suggs, who was a first-round draft pick and is bigger than Barnes. That said, they will find a way for him to contribute. He's too talented for them not to.
It will be a bunch of tough decisions on who to cut and who to keep. Should make for an interesting end of the month.
any word on ogden's injury?
He's progressing, should bother him all year, but not so much that he can't play at an elite level.
I'm predicting this is his final season regardless.
i like what you were writing about gaither. that if ogden was healthy, gaither could see some reps at RT with the first group
terry didn't impress me much last night
I think Terry has major confidence issues. I wouldn't rule Gaither out, but Terry has to really struggle for them to open things up
where do the confidence issues come from? in the time he played last year in ogden's absence, he played very, very well
Adam is really hard on himself, kind of a perfectionist. Even last year he wasn't pleased with his performance.
He's a quiet, kind of withdrawn personality. Almost shy.
be shy all you want...but shut down that right side!
It's all in his head, because he has the tools to succeed. He needs to believe in himself.
I've got to run, guys. Thanks again for the questions. I'll put this up later tonight.
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6,0What is your feeling about the home opener against the Jets?
I think they can beat the Jets.
Not that impressed with them even with Mangenius running the show.