Ravens brass will speak with reporters during the unofficially named "State of the Ravens" press conference tomorrow at 2 p.m.
Ravens Owner Steve Bisciotti, President Dick Cass, General Manger Ozzie Newsome and Head Coach John Harbaugh will be fielding questions.
It's traditionally the only time during the year that Bisciotti holds a press conference with reporters, and one of the few times that Newsome also speaks.
Newsome and Harbaugh will all be freshly returned from the NFL Scouting Combine. The start of free agency is just two weeks away. It's a busy time with plenty of topics to talk about.
(Make sure you tune in here for the live stream.)
Here are some of the issues that will likely be discussed:* *
Bisciotti's 2014 Season Evaluation
Harbaugh has already looked back on the 2014 season, but Owner Steve Bisciotti is always asked for his take. Last year, Bisciotti said "we're all very disappointed" and kept faith in his franchise's leaders after missing the playoffs for the first time since 2008. It will be interesting to hear what kind of tone Bisciotti sets after making it back to the playoffs but falling in the divisional round.* *
Plan To Get Back To Super Bowl
As much as the press conference is about looking back, it's also about looking toward the future. Bisciotti and perhaps others will speak about what they think it will take to get the Ravens back into the Super Bowl. The Ravens were close this year, as they held two 14-point leads on the eventual Super Bowl champion Patriots, but now it's about getting back over the hump. Baltimore also has to find a way to have better results in the AFC North after finishing third in the division in the regular season. The Ravens' division foes are getting tougher, and more talented offensively.* *
Free Agency Update
The Ravens have a few big free agency decisions to make with wide receiver Torrey Smith, running back Justin Forsett, outside linebacker Pernell McPhee and tight end Owen Daniels. Harbaugh didn't have much of an update at the combine, referring such business to Newsome. With Newsome now at the podium, he will be asked about his desire to bring back those players and an update on his confidence in which ones will.* *
Contract Extensions Update
Newsome will also be asked about negotiations with defensive tackle Haloti Ngata's contract extension. Harbaugh said he had no doubt a deal would be done. Newsome will also probably be asked about possible extensions for guard Marshal Yanda, kicker Justin Tucker and cornerback Jimmy Smith, who are all heading into the final years of their contracts. Media could also ask about restructuring cornerback Lardarius Webb's deal.* *
Top Needs This Offseason
Every year, Newsome is asked for his take on the team's top needs this offseason. He generally answers the question with good insight. Last year, he said they needed to get bigger on the interior of the offensive line and they later traded for big-bodied center Jeremy Zuttah. He also spoke of the need to get a receiver or tight end that would "make a third-and-7, third-and-8 catch" and Baltimore later signed Steve Smith Sr. and Daniels and drafted Michael Campanaro. He also talked about getting more athletic at safety and the Ravens signed Will Hill and drafted the fastest safety in the class, Terrence Brooks.* *
How To Improve The Secondary
There was a lot of talk about the offensive line and running game last year at this press conference. This year, there will likely be multiple questions about the Ravens' secondary since that was a clear weakness during the season and in the playoff loss in New England. Newsome and perhaps Harbaugh will talk about how they see that group improving next season.* *
Wide Receiver Fever
There hasn't been a year without questions about the Ravens' interest in wide receivers. It's constantly a talking point in Baltimore, where there's clamor for a first-round draft pick at the position for the first time since 2005 (Mark Clayton). This year, there are a few quality free agent wideouts set to hit the market, and there's another strong draft class of pass catchers. Newsome will be asked about what kind of receiver he feels the team needs to add, if any.* *
Harbaugh spoke about tight end Dennis Pitta at the combine, but there are other key players coming back from season-ending injuries such as cornerback Jimmy Smith, right tackle Rick Wagner, running back Lorenzo Taliaferro, cornerback Asa Jackson and more. Harbaugh might give an update on the progress of those players.* *
Effect Of Domestic Violence On Future Business
Ray Rice is no longer in Baltimore and the Ravens have turned the page. But the sting of last offseason's arrests, and the impact they've made on the Ravens' image, will be something reporters ask Bisciotti about. The Ravens have since made significant contributions to bringing awareness to, and helping the battle against, domestic violence. This far removed, Bisciotti will be asked for his perspective on the whole ordeal and whether it changes how they conduct business going forward. Along with that, Cass is always asked each year for an update on the team's financial standing and business success.