Chat with Jamison Hensley
Welcome to SportsNation! On Wednesday, ESPN NFL Nation Baltimore Ravens reporter Jamison Hensley stops by to chat and answer all of your Ravens questions.
Hensley joined ESPN.com in 2011 after covering the Ravens for The Baltimore Sun for 11 years. A graduate of the University of Maryland, he lives in the Baltimore area with his wife and son.
Send your questions now and join Hensley Wednesday at 2 p.m. ET!
Jamison Hensley (ESPN) (2:03 PM)
Thanks for joining the chat. The Ravens are interviewing Steelers RB coach Kirby Wilson for their offensive coordinator job today. There is no timetable on when Harbaugh wants a new coordinator in place. So, that's the news. Let's kick off the chat.
Greg(MD) [via mobile]
When will the Ravens start signing their free agents?
Jamison Hensley (ESPN) (2:06 PM)
That doesn't happen until closer to the start of free agency, which is at the beginning of March. The first player that the Ravens will approach is TE Dennis Pitta. They would prefer a long-term deal to a franchise tag. And Baltimore would have to designate him in Feburary.
Which safeties and centers that will hit the market or potentially hit the market make most sense for the ravens financially and skill wise?
Jamison Hensley (ESPN) (2:09 PM)
The Ravens don't typically go after unrestricted free agents. They sign the players who have been cut. That allows them to keep compensatory picks. As far as safeties who may get cut, there is Detroit's Louis Delmas and Tennessee's Michael Griffin. I haven't looked at the centers who may get cut. Of the UFAs, the aging stopgaps are Roberto Garza (Chicago), Johnathan Goodwin (San Francisco) and Dominic Raiola (Detroit), and there are more under-the-radar, 20-something prospects like Brian De La Puente (New Orleans), Ryan Wendell (New England) and Joe Hawley (Atlanta).
Of all the positions of needs for the ravens. which ones do you think will be addressed in the draft? free agency?
Jamison Hensley (ESPN) (2:10 PM)
For the draft, a wide receiver makes the most sense because they have a now-experienced Torrey Smith. In free agency, the Ravens should look at center and free safety. It doesn't make sense to go young at those positions when you're still trying to develop Gino Gradkowski and Ryan Jensen at center and you just selected safety Matt Elam in the first round.
John (Denver, CO)
Do you believe the Cierre Wood signing means they aren't looking to draft and RB's? I like Cierre but off field issues worry me.
Jamison Hensley (ESPN) (2:11 PM)
If they get anything out of Wood, that's a bonus. When you sign a player to a future-reserve contract, that's essentially a practice squad prospect. No one you sign to a future contract affects your plans in the draft or free agency.
Ryan (Dover, DE)
Do the Ravens believe Aurthor Brown is their future starting LB or is he more of a 3rd down guy?
Jamison Hensley (ESPN) (2:13 PM)
Brown will have every opportunity to be a starter this season. The Ravens need him to step up into that role. He was limited to passing downs because he was hurt and didn't get a chance to learn the entire defense in minicamps.
Could the ravens possibly hire two secondary coaches?
Jamison Hensley (ESPN) (2:14 PM)
That's a good possibility. I could see them pairing a young coach (promoted from within) with a more experienced one, whether that's hiring someone or moving Steve Spagnuolo into that role.
What are the Ravens going to do to enhance the run game for 2014-2015 season?
Jamison Hensley (ESPN) (2:15 PM)
Upgrade the offensive line. That's where it start.
Hi Jamison. On the defensive side of the ball, why do you think the Ravens gave up so many 4th quarter points this past season? Personnel, leadership, scheme, or something else? Thanks!
Jamison Hensley (ESPN) (2:17 PM)
From those I have spoken with, the Ravens need to be more aggressive late in games. I haven't broken down the tape, but that's the impression I have received from those who have done so. The Ravens played it too safe at times.
Timmy (South Park)
I feel like Hakeem Nicks would be a nice value FA for the Ravens
Jamison Hensley (ESPN) (2:18 PM)
It really depends on his price tag. He fits what the Ravens are looking for, but I would still like the Ravens to take a look at those first-round wide receiver prospects, too.
Ryan (Hanover, PA)
Kirby Wilson?? Give me a break...Why not Kubiak or someone with a track record?
Jamison Hensley (ESPN) (2:19 PM)
Wilson is more popular in coaching circles than you might think. The Titans were thinking of interviewing him for their offensive coordinator position. But I agree with you on Kubiak. I thought he might have received stronger consideration from the Ravens.
Brad (Lynchburg, Va)
Any chance that Vonta is let go again this year in favor of Juice?
Jamison Hensley (ESPN) (2:22 PM)
I really can't see the Ravens keeping Vonta Leach. He's a good leader, but they don't have a need for him anymore in the system that they're running. Unless they go back to a two-back set, it makes no sense to have him on the roster. The Ravens can create $1.75 million in cap space by letting him go.
why isnt rob chudzkinski being considered for oc?
Jamison Hensley (ESPN) (2:23 PM)
Most feel that was Norv Turner's offense with the Browns, and not Chudzinski's. The last time Chudzinski was coordinator was in Carolina, and Cam Newton struggled in the second half of that season under him. I can see him being a position coach when he returns to the NFL. No need for him to rush back. Browns owe him a lot of money.
The Ravens need to have stellar offseasons this year and next. Flacco's cap hit is going to be huge starting in 2016.
Jamison Hensley (ESPN) (2:24 PM)
When Flacco's cap number becomes ridiculous that year, the Ravens are going to have to make a decision whether to re-do the deal or cut him loose. No way he's on the roster with that cap number in 2016. But that's a few years away.
Kevin (Fredericksburg, VA)
Safe to assume Oher,Jacoby Jones, and Daryl Smith wont be back in Baltimore?
Jamison Hensley (ESPN) (2:26 PM)
Of those three, I believe Smith has the best chance to come back because he will be the cheapest. The Ravens would love to re-sign Jones because he is such a playmaker. When he made an impact, the Ravens won games. The trouble is, the Ravens can't pay him another $4 million as a No. 3 receiver and returner. As far as Oher goes, the Ravens will look at him if they can't re-sign left tackle Eugene Monroe.
Do you think the Ravens will resign both TE's (Dennis Pitta and Ed Dickson)?
Jamison Hensley (ESPN) (2:27 PM)
The Ravens are going to do everything they can to keep Pitta. I don't see the Ravens bringing back Dickson unless it's for a bargain deal.
CM (Ocean City)
If the ravens can work out a cap-friendly deal w Boldin, do you believe he could return to Bmore? Or do they just go w a rookie thru the draft?
Jamison Hensley (ESPN) (2:29 PM)
The Ravens are about moving forward, and that's why they won't be looking to bring back Boldin. The Ravens don't want over-30 receivers. It's about getting younger and more explosive at that position.
Jamison, with OT a seemingly deep position in this draft, would it make more sense for the Ravens to sign FA Center Alex Mack rather than OT Eugene Monroe, and then look to the draft for a new set of OTs? (odds are they'll already look for one Tackle in the draft, even if they re-sign Eugene Monroe).
Jamison Hensley (ESPN) (2:31 PM)
Not sure the Ravens see a franchise LT available in the middle of the first round, and they won't trade up because they need all of those picks to fill holes this year. That's why Monroe makes sense. The Ravens won't' have to break the bank to get him, and they know what they're getting with him, unlike a rookie.
If it came down to it, would the Ravens would use the franchise tag on Pitta instead of Monroe? I think either way they would be overpaying either player with the franchise tag, but I think finding a good left tackle is more difficult than finding a good tight end.
Jamison Hensley (ESPN) (2:32 PM)
I would expect the Ravens to put the tag on Pitta because they can't let him go. You saw the offense without a security blanket like him in the lineup. Plus, the Ravens may not have to keep the tag on him. I can see them reaching a new deal before the season. The Ravens like Pitta, and he likes catching passes from Flacco.
Jamison Hensley (ESPN) (2:33 PM)
Thanks for all of the great questions. It's going to feel strange with no NFL games this weekend. Hope you find something to occupy your time. Let's chat next week at the same time. Take care.