Chat with James Walker
Welcome to SportsNation! On Tuesday, ESPN.com AFC North blogger James Walker will stop by to chat about the NFL and what to expect from your team.
Walker joined ESPN.com in 2008 after three seasons covering the Cleveland Browns for the Columbus Dispatch.
Send your questions now and join James Tuesday at 4 p.m. ET!
James Walker (4:00 PM)
How is it going, everyone? Let's get to some questions on the AFC North.
Scott (Columbus, OH)
J-Walk! So what is the deal with the Bengals chances to get still T.O? With Carson & Bob B still talking about him like it could happen.
James Walker (4:02 PM)
Carson and Brat are not writing the paychecks, Scott. Until Mike Brown says the Bengals will sign T.O., don't put too much stock into it. Cincinnati made its choice with Antonio Bryant. I would say there's a small chance of still getting Owens, but it's far less likely than it was a week or so ago.
Brynt Werntz (Orrville, Ohio)
What are the chances the Browns draft a QB in the draft this year, and do you think Tim Hiller (Orrville native) who played at Western Michigan, will be in a Browns uniform next season?
James Walker (4:03 PM)
The Browns will draft a quarterback this year. It's just a matter of what round. Cleveland is going with Delhomme this year. But the team needs to find its long-term solution soon and start grooming that player.
Mike (Lubbock, Tx)
Who are your final four picks?
James Walker (4:04 PM)
Temple University and three other teams. Just kidding. I haven't filled out my brackets yet. I'm not even sure if I will this year.
Mark (Bozeman, MT)
What's up James? Love the blog! What are your thoughts on the recent moves in Cleveland? Also, where do you think the Browns should go in the 1st round?Thanks!
James Walker (4:07 PM)
Mark, would you believe I've been to Montana before? I was in Helena, I believe, one time for a few days. I remember checking out this cool cave out there. Anyway, the Browns have a lot of needs, but I think safety or CB is the way to go. You can check out the AFC North blog today to get a full scope of what I think about their moves in free agency.
Why don't the Bengals sound to most people like favorites to win the division? They went 6-0 against the AFC North last season and made upgrades where necessary in free agency.
James Walker (4:08 PM)
I'm not sure it's smart to make division picks in March. I know you haven't seen any in the AFC North blog. I wouldn't put too much stock into what people are predicting until at least after the NFL draft.
Richard (Raider nation)
As a raider fan can you tell me what makes Kamerion Wimbley worth a third round pick
James Walker (4:10 PM)
Wimbley could turn out to be a nice find, Richard. He's a great athlete, which is why I'm not surprised Al Davis likes him. Wimbley also was a first-round pick that was traded for a third rounder. So Oakland got good value. He has pretty good pass-rushing ability but I think he needs to be coached up some. Considering the cost, I think it was a worthy trade for Oakland.
Richard (West Virginia)
do you think Quinn never got a fair shake in Cleveland or did he just never earn the starting QB job and could be earn the job in denver
James Walker (4:12 PM)
It's fair to say Brady Quinn didn't get a lot of opportunity in Cleveland. I've covered him closely for three seasons and still don't quite have a feel for his abilities. But this is the NFL, and in this league there are times when you only get one shot. Quinn didn't make the most of his chance to start last season.
Hey J-Dub, love the blog dude, thanks for all you do for our AFC North!! Anyways, With Boldin, Stallworth, and Mason in the picture, do you see the Ravens going Offense or Defense in Rd. 1. I like Greshem, or Wilson, but what about Safety Earl Thomas or a DE?
James Walker (4:14 PM)
Thanks, Chris. The smart thing the Ravens did in free agency was to set themselves up to go O or D in the first round. They patched some holes, so I wouldn't be surprised at all if Baltimore chooses to go CB or get another pass rusher instead of a TE or WR.
Terry G (Mason)
How are you on spring around the corner. Seems that the Bengals and Ravens both want a tight end. One would think either the Bengals have to trade up or Baltimore will leap frog ahead and we know the Bengals havn't had one in ten seasons and they claim the one's that can catch can't block. My question would be "who can do both, block and catch at no. 21"?
James Walker (4:17 PM)
You know what? There is no perfect tight in this year's draft. If that was the case, they probably wouldn't be available at No. 21. Blocking is a question for both Jermaine Gresham and Aaron Hernandez. I think Gresham may be slightly better in that category. But it's not often that you get both in the same package anyway.
Marc (City of Brotherly Love)
Has anyone done worse in the first round of the draft than Clevleand in the last 10 years.
James Walker (4:18 PM)
Definitely not in the AFC North. Not sure about the NFL. Maybe Oakland could give Cleveland a run for its money with draft busts.
Joseph (Athens, GA)
Hey James, love the blog. Do you think the Ravens need one more receiver, or should they look elsewhere in the draft? Boldin, MAson, Stallworth sounds like a darn good starting receiving corps. to me
James Walker (4:21 PM)
I think the Ravens could use a burner to stretch the field. Maybe Stallworth can be that player, but that's risky. It doesn't mean Baltimore has to find one in the first round. Last year Pittsburgh did a great job of drafting Mike Wallace in the third and he brought that speed element to the Steelers' offense.
James, what is it with the Steelers and alot of the former Steelers going back this year?
James Walker (4:23 PM)
The grass isn't always greener on the other side, Debbie.
Wes (Cherry Point, NC)
Where do you think Troy Smith will end up playing next year?
James Walker (4:25 PM)
I would be surprised if he's in Baltimore. Potential landing spots for him could be Oakland and Buffalo.
jars (Strongsville, OH)
I think the Browns' QB moves this year mean one thing only: All signs point to Tebow. How exciting would it be for one of the drafts biggest raw talents to become the pet project of renown QB guru Mike Holmgren?
James Walker (4:27 PM)
Is this how the Dawgpound feels or is Jars standing alone on this one?
What is your take on all the backups the Steelers have recently signed, especially Will Allen? Good fits? Does signing Foote and Allen rule out LB or DB with their first rounder?
James Walker (4:28 PM)
I had reservations about Allen as a starter. But after the team kept Ryan Clark, I think Allen is solid as the third safety and special teamer. Larry Foote knows the system will and is the team's first LB off the bench if someone gets hurt. Keep in mind, Lawrence Timmons can move to the outside if needed.
Bryan (Annapolis, MD)
With all the recent signings, where do you think the Steelers look in the first round? Any chance they grab CB Kyle Wilson?
James Walker (4:30 PM)
I like Wilson but I'm not sure if No. 18 is a little too high at this point. I think Baltimore at No. 25 could be a possible landing spot for Wilson.
If Oakland got good value getting Wimbley for a 3rd, Denver got exceptional value getting Quinn for a FB and a couple late rounders. Even if Quinn turns out to be a bust, Denver will not have lost much. Finally, not sure what Holmgren didn't see in Quinn to essentially give him away. Peyton Manning, a HOF QB, has been the beneficiary of 3 1st round WRs, 3 1st round RBs, and a 1st round TE. Conversely, Quinn had M. Massoquoi as his top target. One seriously has to consider the intelligence of these front office fools.
James Walker (4:32 PM)
I agree that Quinn for a sixth-round pick in 2011, Hillis and a conditional pick in 2012 was a worthy risk for Denver as well.
Alex Gideon (Ligonier PA)
is randel el really going to be the 3rd WR? What about Wallace?
James Walker (4:35 PM)
I expect Mike Wallace to be the No. 3 receiver. But it's something to watch in camps this year.
Kovacs (Santa Monica)
How has the most to gain at Florida's pro-day: Joe Haden, Tim Tebow or Carlos Dunlap?
James Walker (4:37 PM)
They all have different things to prove. But Haden has the most money on the line. His 40 time Wednesday could be worth millions. That's what I call pressure.
If Bobbie Williams returns and Andre Smith plays, is the Bengals' offensive line the best in the division? The only problem is penalties, and that could be worked out after a year of playing together as a unit.
James Walker (4:39 PM)
I don't know if that's the case. I have to see more of Smith. He has potential but he didn't show much last year.
At the end of the season Ed Reed says he was 50/50 on coming back. Have you heard anything about him being like 80% coming back?
James Walker (4:41 PM)
The Ravens are very confident Ed Reed is returning. They feel everything will check out fine medically. Reed hasn't said anything official, but the team is operating as though he will come back.
Can the Browns find a way to get Cribbs the ball 10-15 times a game without getting him to beat up to be do his return duties?
James Walker (4:44 PM)
That's a constant back-and-forth the team has to consider. Josh Cribbs is very tough, but he takes a beating. Ideally, the Browns would have enough good offensive players where he doesn't need to get the ball 15 times. But right now that's not the case.
Tim K (Tampa, Fl)
Does Q know the AFC north is NOT the weak NFC west- even if they call the Az Cards Pitt out West..... I cannot believe he is calling for the Steelers before the 1st game- Love it!!!!!!
James Walker (4:45 PM)
What better way to endear yourself to your new team? The Ravens and Steelers like to talk about each other. I think it's healthy for the rivalry.
Is Chad OchoCinco really going to find a true love on his show?
James Walker (4:47 PM)
We will see. But the success rate on all the other dating shows is not very high.
Jordan (Casper, Wy)
Dating Show? Its a dance contest
James Walker (4:49 PM)
He's doing both this offseason, Jordan. Dancing With The Stars first, then a dating show this summer on VH1.
Can Brady Quinn become the QB Cleveland hoped for in Denver?
James Walker (4:49 PM)
Quinn will have a good tutor in Josh McDaniels. I think he has a better chance at succes in Denver than he did in Cleveland.
Tron (Columbus, OH)
I think the Browns have to come away from this draft with Eric Berry. He just brings a lot of versatility for Rob Ryan and immediately upgrades what was a terrible secondary last year.
James Walker (4:52 PM)
Berry is a great player. I actually think he's one of the safest picks in this draft.
Ravens upgrade secondary or improve pass rush and help cover up some secondary issues?
James Walker (4:54 PM)
Ideally they want to do both, and it's possible in the draft. Everyone is writing off Paul Kruger. He may be that player in-house. One year is too early to write off anyone in the NFL.
James Walker (4:55 PM)
Remember how lost Troy Polamalu looked his rookie year?
Tim K (Tampa, Fl)
Regarding DelHommie- I heard Big Show wanted him for his leadership.... but what about Accuracy?? Isn't that most important to a West coast scheme???? Or is that change on hold for a year or two???
James Walker (4:57 PM)
If you take out last year, I think Delhomme has been decent. The question is was last year just a down season or where Delhomme currently stands?
Hey james, will an uncapped year and the potential for a lock-out have any effect on rookie contracts/salaries?
James Walker (5:00 PM)
Not that much. I think that's a major reason why so many juniors declared this year--to get that big contract and signing bonus just in case.
James Walker (5:00 PM)
Thanks again for your time, everyone. Remember to check out the AFC North blog and our AFC North Twitter account.