Subscriber VIP chat transcript

OWINGS MILLS -- Questions and answers about the latest news out of One Winning Drive:

do you think Derrick Martin and David Pittman are good enough to be shut down corners?

My source says that John Harbaugh and Rex Ryan are in discussions as we speak. No deal imminent, but it seems positive so far. Rex Ryan's red pickup truck was at the training complex about a half-hour ago and so was John Harbaugh's car in the designated head coach's space. I'm told they are both there talking things over as we speak. They have been talking ever since Harbaugh was hired a week ago.

Rex is not signed to a new deal yet, but they want to keep him. I'm sure he'll be getting a hefty raise. They have the power to block any lateral move and are inclined to use that power. He doesn't want to be a defensive coordinator anywhere else.

I haven't talked to Ozzie Newsome about the talent pool, but Eric DeCosta is really excited about the influx of juniors in the draft.

Yes, Ron Rivera is a good fallback option, but I think they will be able to get a deal done with Rex Ryan.

No, I don't think Derrick Martin and David Pittman are ultimately going to be good enough.

Will you be at the complex on draft day??

> Rex is in a different space than Harbaugh. He's parked kind of off to the side.

As he should be..

Yes, I will be here on draft day. I have covered the Ravens' draft at team headquarters for every draft they've had since 2001 when I was hired by the Times.

man, i wish i had your life :) I'm hearing that Frank Gansz and Tony Nathan have a good chance of being retained, but nothing sealed yet.

Did I miss any other question? Draft wants in order is a good start... Aaron: Im just curious as to why this whole thing with Rex and the Skins came to light. Were there really serious discussions about compensation from the Skins for Rex? The reason I ask is because if everyone wants him back so badly, I don't understand why they wouldn't of just concentrated on keeping Rex here instead of this BS with the skins

Cornerback, pass rusher, quarterback, offensive tackle, could vary, though, obviously as the draft board changes.

Do you think there is a chance the Ravens would actually go DT in the draft, for example Sedrick Ellis?

Jim Fassel, I'm told, was informally calling Rex Ryan to try to line things up. Also, Vinny Cerrato is close with Gary Wichard, an agent that Rex is friends with. It was back-channel, I'm told, not true tampering.

Where is the holdup w/ Rex? FO, JH, Rex?

I've heard great things about Ellis, kind of a more athletic Mike Patterson type.

Is Snyder sane (tongue in cheek)? On a side note. I can't tell you how happy I am that Vinny Cerrato has gained most of the power that Gibbs had. It should ensure more years of turmoil in DC

and is snyder really hated by most nfl people?

More of a money thing, the fact that Rex Ryan and Ozzie Newsome were at the Senior Bowl, them wanting to lock up Cam Cameron and working hard on getting that accomplished, plus the awkwardness of Rex having interviewed for the job and being endorsed by the players and being hurt that he didn't get the Atlanta job. He was shocked that Mike Smith got that one. So is the rest of the league.

I don't know if Daniel Snyder is crazy as much as he's a guy who doesn't consult other NFL people to get their opinions.

Players really happy with Cameron as OC? It seems so but is it true?

A lot of people don't like Daniel Snyder. Apparently, Joe Gibbs apologized to the staff for them being in limbo this long. If Fassel gets the skins gig, do you think he will bring in Billick?

The players are thrilled. I talked to Daniel Wilcox and Justin Green today and they were very upbeat. The article is on the front page.

do you see a lot of players working out?

Brian is going to sit this year out and he won't want to be an assistant anyway. Have you heard anything about any possible o-line coaches or in your opinion who has a good shot at getting the job.

1,0What are the chances brown gets moved to C, Grubbs to LG, and Yanda to RG?

Aaron: What is the sentiment around the complex about what some perceive as Bisciotti's cozy relationship with Ray and its effects on the team and management.

A lot of players are there every day, especially injured guys like Dan Cody, Mark Clayton and Daniel Wilcox. Dan recently underwent toe surgery and is on crutches, had to have scar tissue removed and cartilage repaired.

Hard to say about Jason Brown until they hire an offensive line coach, but I think they will leave him at guard in all likelihood. It's his best position.

it's amazing how debilitating these toe injuries can be

Some people who work for the Ravens think it's gotten out of hand, others think it's not a big deal. I haven't polled everyone, of course.

do the ravens big whigs have an open door policy?

will bisciotti let ray go to another team to end his career

Im very concerned about Ray's power within this organization.

I think it makes it tough for Steve to make an objective decision ultimately on Ray Lewis' future. He should probably just leave it up to Ozzie Newsome and stay out of it because of their close relationship. It hasn't reached that point yet, I think people are too worried about something that won't happen until after next season in all likelihood.

5,0I know the players are on "vacation" but will there be a team meeting called once all the staff is in place

The Ravens don't exactly have an open-door policy for reporters, but I get to talk to people that I need to.

I don't know what Steve is going to do, but he told me Saturday that he thought Ray had four or five good years left in him, so you can see where that one might be going.

6,0Aren't teams with new HCs allowed to have additional OTA time? Will the Ravens take advantage of that?

No big meeting planned yet, but I know John Harbaugh wants to have one before the offseason conditioning program starts.

I expect a ton of minicamps, yes. Any names coming up for a o-line coach?

I hope SB will step back and reassess his relationship with Ray. That might not be possible since what's done is done but I'd like to see a more Boss/Employee relationship rather than a buddy/buddy thing

It's been quiet. I know you guys like Mike Solari and Cam Cameron would likely wave the flag on that one. The Jets are interested in Solari, too.

Of the draft QBs, which is the favorite in your view.

Preston stated in the paper that Harbuagh had no plan for hiring coaches. Is this an over reaction, I think it took Billick a while to get his staff together. What gives?

i know Ray and Steve go to UMD games..but what else have they been doing to make it a big deal?

Brian Brohm or Matt Ryan short-term. Long-term maybe Andre Woodson or Joe Flacco.

Harbaugh didn't have a fully formulate list at his first meeting, I'm told. I'm also told he didn't want to sound presumptuous.

daddio. it's been widely reported that SB is quite enamoured with Ray. The Terps game is just an example we see.

RE Steve & Ray: I've seen them at Maryland games and they jaw the entire time. A lot transpires, I'm sure.

Aaron, if you had the opportunity to work for the Ravens..what Department would it be?

Aaron: We know that our cap situation is pretty bad. If they franchise suggs then it's really bad for this year at least. Are there any talks of some pretty big name vets with big contracts possibly getting cut?

I'm not looking for a job with the Ravens.

i know..but if you were

Wat kind of Cigars does Steve Bisciotti smoke?

If I had to pick a department, probably scouting.

Inexpensive ones, usually. I think he likes Cohibas.

Padron, I bet...

Jonathan Ogden is always a possibility to get out, as is Steve McNair. They haven't made any of those decisions yet, though. that would be fun..i read that they hire college graduates right out of college to be scouts..but when i was on the website looking at the staff, i only see scouts that have been with the Ravens for 5-9 years

i don't see any young scouts

Yea. I've heard you hint that

Harabaugh thinks QB is a major problem. Is it save to say that he wouldn't mind cutting ties with McNair?

hat is the likelihood McNair will start for the Ravens next year?

They have several "personnel assistants" who get to scout players and watch film. Those guys eventually get promoted to be scouts here or with other NFL teams. It's kind of like a paid internship. It involves some menial tasks like picking prospects up at the airport, etc.

How is the health of Art Modell? When I saw him recently he didnt look so well.

I don't think Harbaugh would hesitate to do so. But remember Cameron referenced Brett Favre's renaissance during the conference call when asked about McNair. I wouldn't rule out him being back, but I wouldn't call it a lock, either.

Art Modell's body is breaking down, but his spirit remains strong. Hopefully, Art will be with us for several more years. He's a great guy, very kind. I talked to him briefly last Saturday. He seemed happy.

5,0Will the training crew be getting a raise? with all the injuries I think they are going to earn one

I doubt he will be inducted anytime soon.

What are the odds of a contract for Suggs before we either cut him loose of franchise him

Haven't heard about any raises in the offing for Bill Tessendorf, but I'm sure they are taking good care of him.

there was a thread on vip about possible uniform changes...have you heard anything else about that?

They aren't planning on cutting Suggs loose, so those odds are low. It's most likely that he will be franchised. I've heard his asking price is way too high right now for a deal to be consummated. No, I haven't heard dollar figures except he wants at least $20 million guaranteed money. Basically, he wants more than Adalius Thomas got.

do you sit in the press box at Ravens Stadium?? is it a sweet place to watch a game??

Aaron: Have you talked personally to any players about the Harbaugh hire. If so, what were their thoughts?

Haven't heard anything about uniform changes. I'll need to check it out with Ed Carroll.

5,0Any other players having off season surgery tha tyou have heard of? Yes, I sit in the press box. It's a great view. I sit next to the Baltimore Sun guys and behind the national media, when they attend games, which isn't as often as it used to be.

is it a bad idea to email Steve Biscotti?

I've talked to several players, including Daniel Wilcox today, and they like the Harbaugh hire. There's a quote from Dan about Harbaugh in the latest front page article.

I haven't heard about any other surgeries yet.

5,0Is some of the $$ problem with Suggs because of his agent?

I wouldn't recommend e-mailing Steve. He's a very busy guy.

6,0Have you talked with any of the Defense players about the Harbaugh hire?

Have you heard anything from Billick since his departure?

Other than Ray, has Harbaugh had a chance to talk to any players that you know about?

Yes, the agent, Gary Wichard, drives an especially hard bargain. He also negotiated Dwight Freeney's deal, so he expects top dollar for his clients. That's his job.

I talked to Brian briefly when he was leaving, shook hands, wished him luck. He declined an interview request, saying, "It wouldn't be a smart thing to do right now." I talked to Rex Ryan about Brian and he said Brian is in good spirits.

how long did it take Billick to clean out his office after being fired??

How high do you see DE on the Ravens draft targets?

Yes, Harbaugh has talked to several players, including Mark Clayton and Daniel Wilcox.

He cleaned out his office on a Thursday midway through the afternoon.

I think they are very interested in the defensive ends. They have been talking to a bunch of them at the Senior Bowl, including Va. Tech's Chris Ellis.

7,0There's a rumor out there that the owner steered Harbaugh toward hiring Cameron over Shurmur, any truth to that?

Ellis in Rd. 3-4?

I was wondering if that was Harbaugh's hire or Ozzie and co.

Aaron: Pardon me if you've commented before on this or you don't want to. But do you think Bisciotti made a good sound choice in firing Billick?

I think they all wanted an experienced coordinator. Remember, they contacted him weeks ago. It's been in the works for a while. Harbaugh chose his mentor over his good friend.

So Harbs really works like a fiend, huh?

Ellis would be a nice third-round pick if they had one.

Hey Aaron, great stuff this week!

Wanted to say that up front!

I think he had to fire Brian, but he should have fired him two years ago when he wanted to. This wasn't a great year to be looking for a head coach.

Might get a late third, yes, for AD.


I can't keep up with him.

Pashos should net a pick too. Possibly Mughelli as well

did anything happento brian and steve behind the scenes that led to the firing?

He's there early and he leaves late at night.

Whats your pick for the Super Bowl?

or would he never go to B-more cause of the Steelers?

1st RD CB and if lucky Flacco in the 2nd?

I think Harbaugh might have a hard time keeping up with Aaron to be honest

Haven't heard anything concrete on behind the scenes other than Brian was pushing them for a vote of confidence and acting very insecure. It didn't help his stock obviously with Bisciotti. He would have been better off leaving him alone and just concentrating on coaching.

If we take a CB in the first then we better trade down.

Patriots will win the Super Bowl, but it will be a really good game.

Cowher was unlikely from the start.

He wants to live in North Carolina.

That scenario could work out, but I think it's a bit of a reach for cornerbacks at No. 8 because Michael Jenkins returned to Ohio State for his senior year.

I've been told they did talk to Bill Cowher several times this year, but they'll never admit it.

< What do you see our o-line looking like next season?

who is the biggest name in your cell phone Aaron?

any Hall of Famers?

Celebs?

Probably left to right Adam Terry, Jason Brown, Chris Chester, Ben Grubbs and Marshal Yanda. Jared Gaither could get in the mix, too, or Mike Flynn could stay in there, too.

So you think Ogden retires?

Ozzie Newsome is a Hall of Famer in my phone.

I won't be shocked if he comes back, but I think it will be a mild surprise if he returns.

Not sure he wants to work as hard as it takes at his age and pay that price.

If Ogden does indeed retire, I assume that we will see a nice break on the cap. We get alot more relief if he retires as opposed to being cut, correct?

is he ever at the complex now that the season is over?

Ogden hasn't been back since the day they fired Brian Billick.

More relief if he retires, yes.

Don't have the figures in front of me, no.

Will the Ravens be at all active in FA?

Mildly at this point is what I'm hearing.

5,0I'm wondering about the CB Cromartie, (not in the 1st) If he is even close to as good as his brother he might make a good 5,0investment

They really liked Cromartie a lot.

how much thought do they put into who gets introduced on gameday, and if it's individual or team intros?

What players in the draft have the ravens shown interest in?

What do you think the odds of Flacco making to the Ravens in Rd. 2?

Bruce Cunningham has told me it's a very involved decision made through the PR department, head coach and other gameday staff. I think it matters very little other than to the fans.

I've heard this week that Flacco might not make it past the Falcons' second-round pick.

you're probably right, but it is a pretty BIG deal to a lot of the fans that i talk to

If so, where does that put Ryan?

Hmm, that means the falcons don't take a QB in round 1

It's not a lock that Atlanta won't, but they are hedging their bets.

If Ryan is there at 8, I can't see the Ravens passing him up

7,0If Matt Ryan is there at #8, do the Ravens bite?

5,0Yeh the Falcons are sort of in NEED of a new QB

If you could guess which players may have their contracts restructured, if any?

If I were to guess Id say they have Ryan rated much higher than woodson

No word right now on any restructure candidates, seems unlikely to happen at the moment.

Any interest in Crable from Mich.?

Aaron: Is the scouting staff etc.... staying put?

Yes, no changes in the scouting department.

I heard they like Crable. I heard everybody likes Crable.

7,0How much longer before the coaching staff is complete in your estimation?

Week or two.

Great pass rushing LB!

Yes, he is.

Hard hitter, too.

Just ask the West Virginia fullback.

He knocked his helmet off.

this week at the Senior Bowl. Do you forsee Ozzie feeling any heat if this team falls flat on it's face again next season? Or does the fact that we've got a new HC and staff mean that expectations are a bit lower. Bisciotti says we have a Super Bowl caliber team but I think we all know that's just PR talk

And that FB is a beast!

I don't think Ozzie is in any danger.

Owen Schmidtt

Big fullback, but he needs some work to play at this level, I'm told.

Do we look at TE? Big problem w/ injuries this year

Definitely a hard-nosed dude. I think they should, but it's not a huge priority for them.

Anybody from Maryland interest the Ravens. Henderson?

Aaron: Have you seen a year where this team has so many holes that need to be filled via the draft?

I guess 2002 but besides that?

Draft focus at QB, DE, CB and OT?

hat can we expect in the way of trainin camp this year? Hard/easy, open/closed?

I think Henderson is the primary target for NFL teams.

I don't think the team is that bad off at least not as bad as 2002.

5,0NO camp cream puff please

It's up there, definitely.

Chances of a free agent QB coming if Steve leaves?

Good call on draft focus.

I doubt they will have it closed, or should I say they better not.

Camp will be open as usual and at McDaniel College. They will likely run an uptempo camp, but not that much hitting since that's the way Andy Reid did things. At times, Harbaugh will let them mix it up. I'm sure it will be more demanding than the camps Brian Billick conducted.

Unlikely for a free agent quarterback.

what is with this camp creampuff stuff? this team was great in November and December for years. Then we start losing and "camp creampuff" gets blamed?

players would attribute their success late in the year to Billick's camps. Man, that term annoys me

what are billicks chances at being inducted into the ring of honor

Camp has been soft for years. Sometimes, the tackling and blocking could have been better with young players who needed those contact drills to hone their skills. This year is one of those years where they needed to test themselves more in the preseason. The lack of hitting was glaring in games at times.

6,0I think Camp Creampuff is good for a veteran team, but we had to field a lot of young guys this year and they didn't seem prepared.

A lot of time would have to go by for Brian and everyone to comfortably do that, but eventually I'm sure it will happen.

When do you think we will have a complete coaching staff?

7,0 90% of team run a cream puff camp, that's so overrated

A week or two.

Will Rolle return? He'd be excellent nickle if healty

And Cameron seems to be someone who stresses fundamentals like Harbs..

thanks for doing this so often aaron, really appreciated

I think Samari will likely be back if his epilepsy is under control.

I think Harbaugh needs to do exactly what he talked about in the press conference. Stress TEAM TEAM TEAM

It was a refreshing concept to hear someone say that. Brian seemed to give them too much freedom to be individuals.

IMO if Samari comes back he's gonna start. Who's gonna start over him? I guess a 1st round CB if that's what we do.

5,0also they need to occasionally practice in bad weather, games don't always fall on sunny no wind days

I think AD hit the nail on the head.....lots of stars thinking about themselves not the team

Roger that

Exactly to both the last two points.

AD was telling the truth. Truth hurts sometimes.

Harbaugh and Cameron seem to be basics guys where as Rex can get king of exotic. Forsee any problems?

Start Rolle and work in rookie

Aaron: is it accurate to say that if Rolle does return that there's a good chance he'll be starting?

I don't think there will be problems between those three.

If he's back, it's to start, not be a backup.

Otherwise, he would likely just retire or seek a job elsewhere. I thought he played well when he returned before he hurt his shoulder.

I hope his epilepsy gets under control for his sake and so that the team can draft and go into FA accordingly

sometimes people in this town take for granted the CB play we have

I'm shocked how obviously fatal losing Rolle, Cmac and Pryce

Those guys are really pivotal performers.

you don't think? All the Atlanta talk. the Skins talk. the talk about the players viewing him as the HC?

not to mention Ogden, Lewis and McNair

7,0What do you think about the Mike Smith Hire in ATL?

Doesn't Rivera run a 4-3. That would mean a change in personnel, right?

I think it was a bad hire. Smith isn't nearly as qualified as several people in the league, including Rex. I even heard rumors he might be on the outs in Jacksonville.

Rivera can coach either defense.

maybe. or maybe it's just magnified because we haven't gone through this in almost 10 years

Probably so.

I really think losing Garrett will be huge blessing....he seems egocentric unlike Harbaugh

5,0 I bet Rex isn't getting much sleep these days

Harbaugh=Baltimore type guy Garrett=LA type guy

I think Garrett is a silver-spoon kid, never had to work hard in his life. Harbaugh is a scrapper.

Rex is doing okay. He's surprised he didn't get the Atlanta job, but he's doing okay.

It's been a difficult period for him in his professional life, but Rex will be fine.

i have a feeling Rex might be destined to be a DC for his career.

I think Rex is head-coaching material. I wouldn't rule him out.

Do you think the Ravnes will extend Ray or let him play out his deal and move on?

I think they'll let it play out until after next season and see how they feel about it then.)

I think something with Rex could happen tomorrow, yes, but there are no guarantees. So, don't get mad if it takes more time than a day or two.


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