Chat Transcript 12/11/02

For those that missed it, this evening's chat was a good one. Here, minus random blurb about Crowdogs Voodoo sticks and rumors of Matt Cavenaugh having naked photos of Brian Billick, is the transcript. Enjoy (and be sure to stop in next Wednesday).

aaronwilson  Hi guys, sorry for the delay. I was filing a story for the Times. I'm ready for your questions now. Hit me.
adminsteve  I'll do it, Aaron, news on Knight?
aaronwilson  Tom Knight was signed to a two-year contract, but isn't expected to contribute this season, if at all. He's insurance. The Ravens listed him as doubtful because of his chronic hamstring problem.
raven536  Ok I've got a question.....What do you think are the possibilities of the Ravens signing David Boston or another big time reciever in the off season?
aaronwilson  There chances aren't bad because of the salary cap space they have afforded themselves through last off-season's purge. However, they are going to be prudent and cautious with all big-ticket signings. With Boston, it's buyer beware for two reasons: 1. He has a history of substance abuse, including cocaine. 2. He will likely receive the franchise tag, requiring compensation of a first-round draft pick and cash.
Crowdog89  Any news about any fine and/or suspension for CMac after the helmet throwing incident, either by the team or the league?
aaronwilson  Chris said he hasn't heard from the league. He's been chastised by Brian Billick. He expects to be fined. The fine will range from $5,000 to $25,000. It will likely be announced tomorrow. Chris is upset about being compared to Kyle Turley, who is whining about suing the league if Chris isn't forced to undergo anger management counseling as he did last year when he tossed Damien Robinson's helmet. Chris called Turley a crazy dude and said he never lost control or meant to rip the helment off. Whatever. It's small potatoes to McAlister. He hurt the team with his immature actions, though, and the Ravens should remember the incident at the bargaining table this offseason. More important, Chris has been burned plenty this season, although the injuries are a definite factor in his pass coverage.  
raven536  Is there any truth to the rumor that Jermaine Lewis will return to the Ravens next year?
aaronwilson  There's no truth to that rumor. He's been injury-prone, not as productive and the Ravens have a surplus of return specialists. Also, Lewis has confirmed what the Ravens, especially Brian Billick, suspected about his receiving capabilities.
Birddawg  Is Chester Taylor going to contiune on Kickoff Returns???
HDDream  Aaron, given the red flags you listed with Boston, do you think the Ravens are more likely to target Peerless Price than him?
aaronwilson  Yes, he will. He'll continue to be evaluated and split the time with Lamont Brightful. This was a clever way to involve their promising sixth-round draft pick. Taylor is elusive and strong.
aaronwilson  Peerless Price might be a better fit, character-wise, as well as the venerable Isaac Bruce, who could be a cap casualty. Price's price, pardon the pun, may be prohibitive for the Bills, who invested considerably in Eric Moulds, another talented wideout. Man, Drew Bledsoe has it good. Jeff Blake would have killed to be in Orchard Park, N.Y. if the Bills hadn't pulled the trigger on Bledsoe.
ravenatic  with Ron Johnson doing his best impression of a man with no hands, are we going to see Randy Hymes get a real shot ?
Birddawg  Have any of the 2nd tier of widerecivers on the team looked like they may be comming on in practice?
aaronwilson  Randy Hymes received 12-15 snaps on Sunday, his most extensive action yet. He's expected to see similar work on Sunday. Johnson isn't done yet. Milton Wynn intrigues me primarily based on his impressive workout numbers. Reportedly, he's made a good first impression. We'll see if that translates into an opportunity. Jeff Ogden isn't held in high esteem by the coaching staff as a wideout. He's viewed as a journeyman. I think he has better hands than a lot of these clowns, though.
adminsteve  Aaron, the Travis Taylor bandwagon is fast depleting. What do you think the Ravens will do with TT?
Birddawg  Is Mulatalio going to be re-signed?
aaronwilson  As for the second-tier receivers, and aren't they all really second-tier targets actually?, no one really distinguishes himself to the press corps because we aren't allowed to watch much practice. Nobody has received any glowing reports from David Shaw or Matt Cavanaugh of late.
aaronwilson  Travis will likely return, although he'll be relegated to a secondary role, possible as the second or third wideout and won't be featured so heavily ever again.
aaronwilson  Edwin Mulitalo will be signed along with Chris McAlister to new contracts. Ozzie Newsome, Brian Billick, Pat Moriarity and both players told me to expect this resolution. It shouldn't be too acrimonious, either, unless McAlister makes outrageous demands in negotiations.
Crowdog89  Are the Ravens and Billick happy enough with Blake to bring him back next season as a possible starter?(I think Blake sucks eggs, but I don't have any say so to the team ;) )
aaronwilson  Yes, apparently so. They think it's not all his fault. They are choosing to blame the receivers, the injuries and the offensive line's shortcomings. They think Blake could be a short-term answer. They have legitimate concerns about Redman's back. By the way, he still lacks enough flexibility to touch his toes. Brian isn't inclined to play him anytime soon. He probably requires surgery.
ravenatic  has there been any talk about posibly trading for another wr, rather than compete with other teams for one ?
aaronwilson  No, trades rarely occur in the NFL because of salary cap ramifications. Expect a signing or a draft pick, or both, but no trade, no dice.
ThirdRowRaven  Do the Ravens have a good shot of geeting Iassic Bruce from the Rams next season??
aaronwilson  Not exactly on Bruce. It may take a while before the Rams release him.
HDDream  Aaron, how do you see the Ravens trying to fill that RT hole this offseason? Free agency or the draft? Also do you see them making any more moves besides the RT spot with regards to the starting line this offseason?
ThirdRowRaven  I thought Bruce was a free agent next year??
ravenatic  nope, cap casualty
ravenatic  maybe
aaronwilson  They will probably explore the possibilities of signing Wayne Gandy since Jon Jansen apparently will never make it to free agency. I think Florida State's Brett Williams is better than any of these other guys currently under contract to the Ravens. Ethan Brooks is border-line incompetent. I think they could use an upgrade at right guard or center, too, but they'll be reluctant to make changes.
adminsteve  Other than what we have read, any other info on Ray's surgery
aaronwilson  Not much. Ray's surgery was uneventful. He's reportedly resting comfortably at his Owings Mills home.
Crowdog89  What do you think the Ravens chances are of really winning the division?
aaronwilson  Slim to none.
ravenatic  why hasn't Redman had surgery yet ? and who might they be looking at for qb in the draft ( Ragone ??? )
adminsteve  And slim left town
ThirdRowRaven  Do you think the Ravens will let go of Travis Taylor next year?? His performance has been very dull.
aaronwilson  Chris still harbors hopes of getting back on the field. He believes his back will heal on its own as it did at Louisville. The Ravens aren't that optimistic. In the draft, if they addressed the position, I think they would investigate Texas' Chris Simms thoroughly. He could sneak into the Ravens' territory. I think he would be a significant upgrade.
ravenatic  ya dont say
aaronwilson  Travis Taylor will likely be back. He might have to take a pay cut, though.
aaronwilson  Obviously, Travis Taylor has underachieved, but the situation is complicated. They have noone else and he continue to flash that damn word, potential, that Brian Billick hates so much. At least he has some ability. Ron Johnson is an extremely limited athlete.
Crowdog89  What about Jake Delhomme? Isn't he a FA after this year. An upgrade from Blake ;)
aaronwilson  Jake Delhomme is a popular man in the Big Easy. He's going nowhere. He'll be paid handsomely to back up Aaron Brooks for the future.
ravenatic  HOw is Marques Douglas doing in his rehab ?
aaronwilson  Marques Douglas is progressing well. He's off of crutches and is working hard at his exercises.
HDDream  Aaron, at this point, what do you think the chances are of Cavanaugh being dumped after the year? If he goes, any ideas on a replacement for him?
Crowdog89  Know any mafia men?
aaronwilson  It's hard to say if Cavanaugh will be ""whacked"" Sopranos style. He's not afraid of being fired, I can tell you that. He'll get another job. He's doing pretty much what he can. There should be more blame of Ozzie Newsome and his personnel departments. While they found gems with Todd Heap and Jamal Lewis, these wideouts are awful. They need to be more thorough.
aaronwilson  I don't know if Matt Cavanaugh should necessarily be fired. I know he has to clear every play with Brian Billick, so it's partially Brian's fault, too. There's enough blame to go around, but he's the convenient fall guy.
ravenatic  how is Shaw doing with his new job of working with the ""qb""
Crowdog89  A qb besides Blake would be nice...sorry that 2nd INT sunday just killed me as did the fumble..proverbial ""last straw...
ravenatic  and why isnt Blake using his legs ?
ThirdRowRaven  Do you think Jermaine Lewis could comeback as a Raven next year?? It seems that the Texans are unhappy with his performance.
aaronwilson  Shaw does little to nothing with the quarterbacks other than prepping scout team star Anthony Wright. QBs are basically BB and MC's province.
aaronwilson  No. He's not performing well. He's not healthy and the Ravens have a surplus of return specialists.
ravenatic  Why isn't Blake using his legs ? more
aaronwilson  Blake is reluctant to scramble more because he's older and presumedly wiser. He wants to avoid injury because he wants to stay on the field. He also hates the knock of running quarterback that's usually placed on black quarterbacks. He also knows that Chris Redman isn't really healthy enough to relieve him if he got banged up.
HDDream  Do the Ravens view getting a pass rusher, especially at LB, a priority this offseason? After Douglas and McCrary's injury, there hasn't been any pass rush here at all
ThirdRowRaven  Do you think this is the last season for McCrary???
aaronwilson  Not really. They want to upgrade at defensive end and nose guard more than linebacker. They like having one stay-at-home outside linebacker, Cornell Brown, and one pass rusher, Peter Boulware. They like Riddick Parker, too. They think very highly of him.
Crowdog89  Do you think next years team will be significantly different from this one with the increased $ available?
aaronwilson  McCrary is definitely done. He's exhausted practically all medical options other than a leg transplant.
aaronwilson  Yes, it will be transformed, but they won't want to get totally away from the blue-collar core of players that have worked hard and definitely qualify as scrappy and occasionally productive.
Dev21  Aaron, you told me a last week that the Ravens are indeed working on a deal with McAlister. When do you think this deal will be completed?
Mista_T  Aaron: What's your take on the severity of Redman's injury? A chronic problem?
aaronwilson  They're in preliminary discussions, but Pat Moriarity said the Ravens usually prefer to conduct this type of business in the off-season. They might quietly begin some formal talks soon. Stay tuned on that issue. I'm checking on it each week. The answer, for now, is not yet.
ThirdRowRaven  HEY JHU
Dev21  Okay. Thanks.
jhuLAX4ever  Aaron: Is having Chester Taylor return Kickoffs going to turn into a permanent thing?
aaronwilson  Chris Redman's back injury is a preexisting condition the Ravens were aware of when they drafted him out of Louisville. It's definitely something, and I'm no doctor, that seems like it can only be cured through surgery. Back surgery is a tricky deal. It could backfire potentially. Chris' future is very much in doubt.
aaronwilson  Chester Taylor is back there to give him a chance to show his wares to the Ravens because Jamal Lewis, rightfully so, takes most of the work at running back. The fact that he's good at it and was also excellent at Toledo, is a boon to the Ravens' efforts. Also, larger kickoff returners are en vogue in the league because of the kamikazes that cover kicks in this league. He'll be heard from in this capacity again.
OutsideRzAcE  I have a question, how much concern is there over Matt Stover? His kickoffs don't have much distance and he isn't very reliable from 40+ yards out anymore
jhuLAX4ever  Do you think Stover will be here next year (as a continuation to outside's question)
aaronwilson  Not too much, other than kickoffs. He's a very good player. However, he already has an eye on a career after football, possibly in radio or television. His candor and wit would be a welcome addition. Perhaps he might write one day for the Insiders, who knows?
adminsteve  Shhh.
aaronwilson  I think he will be here for at least one final season. He's been very accurate. Why mess with a good thing? They could find another kickoff specialist better than Jenkins.
Birddawg  How important does the ravens feel that upgrading the Defensive Line is in the offseason?
jhuLAX4ever  I'm just thinking because 50%% of his kicks now look like DYING DUCKS
Dev21  How do the Ravens feel about their secondary, going into next season?
HDDream  I've got one last question if I can ask it Steve
aaronwilson  Defensive line is a definite area of concern. Rex Ryan told me he's doing the best he can with what he's got. He's proud of them, but he wants to coach some studs.
jhuLAX4ever  And 1 final one from me... Are Porter and Demps going to split time for the rest of the season?
aaronwilson  The secondary is an up-and-coming group. They need a cover corner to complete the unit and possibly shift Gary Baxter from corner to safety, where his size would be more of an asset. Porter and Demps aren't really in the Ravens' plans that much right now. They're backups.
HDDream  Aaron, the turf at Ravens Stadium has been awful this year, and Billick mentioned he was hoping for a switch to fieldturf for next year, do you see that possibly happening?
aaronwilson  Possibly, he usually gets whatever he wants. He's not very polite to those guys, though.
ravenatic  hd read my mind
aaronwilson  Sephy, let's get a question in from you. Go ahead.
Sephy  I'm thinking....
aaronwilson  Anybody else?
Sephy  anything has probably already been covered
aaronwilson  My fingers are warm.
HDDream  dully noted Dev, still got that feeling they may think they might have that CB though in Knight, but we'll see
Sephy  good day for warm fingers
adminsteve  Texans Ravens predictions :)
adminsteve  ??
aaronwilson  Knight is worth evaluating.
Sephy  28-7 Ravens

Ravens Insider Top Stories