It's time to click open this weekend's Baltimore Ravens mailbag ...
@jamisonhensley: It's too early to say. Not to dodge the question, but Gary Kubiak's chances of being one-and-done as the Ravens' offensive coordinator is tied to two key factors: the number of teams looking for head coaches and how teams view Kubiak's health. Kubiak deserves to be a head coaching candidate based on how he has dramatically turned around the Ravens' attack. The Ravens' offense, which was ranked No. 29 last season, is on track to being a top-10 one for the first time since 1997. Joe Flacco is on pace to set career highs in passing yards, completion percentage and touchdowns. What may concern NFL owners looking for a head coach is the fact that Kubiak is one year removed from having a mini-stroke on the field. Still, if there are six to seven teams seeking head coaches this offseason, you should expect to hear Kubiak's name being linked to these vacancies.
@jamisonhensley do you think Kubiak stays at the end of the season?— Ravens Make Playoffs (@TheReal_DorianK) December 10, 2014
@jamisonhensley: Slot receiver Michael Campanaro isn't listed on the injury report, which means he'll be available for Sunday's game against Jacksonville. It seems like a safe bet that the rookie seventh-round pick will be active considering the right knee injury to Torrey Smith. Campanaro was just starting to find a niche in the Ravens' offense before injuring his hamstring. He had a season-high 40 yards on three catches in his last game, which was in late October. Kamar Aiken is expected to start along with Steve Smith if Torrey Smith is sidelined. The Ravens will then split reps between Campanaro, Marlon Brown and Jacoby Jones at the No. 3 spot unless someone gets hot.
@jamisonhensley What are the odds that Campanaro is ready to go on Sunday?— Kenny (@bakerspazing) December 10, 2014
@jamisonhensley: Probably not. John Harbaugh tends to focus on the present, not a game three years ago. For the most part, the Ravens beat the teams they're supposed to. They're not like the Pittsburgh Steelers, who have a history of overlooking struggling teams. When the Ravens play these last-place teams, I remember what former Ravens linebacker Jarret Johnson once told me. Leading up to these types of games, Harbaugh's attention to detail is even more heightened in practice, so there's little chance of players letting down. The Ravens are an impressive 35-8 (.814) under Harbaugh when playing teams with losing records.
@jamisonhensley Is Harbaugh reminding the team of that horrible loss to Jacksonville a couple of years ago when they took them lightly?— Jiji N. (@JijiNakaba) December 10, 2014
@jamisonhensley: Of the Ravens' three losses since cornerback Jimmy Smith went down with a season-ending foot injury, I would say the Ravens would've won one of them. The Ravens could've used Smith in that final quarter against Philip Rivers and the San Diego Chargers. I'm still focused on the long-term impact of not having Smith. As I've written before, the Ravens would have a better chance of making a deeper run in the postseason with their top cornerback. It's difficult to think the Ravens can stop quarterbacks such as Tom Brady, Peyton Manning and Andrew Luck in the playoffs with their current secondary.
@jamisonhensley How many games do you think we would've won if Jimmy Smith didn't get injured?— Misagh Dorost (@misagh19) December 10, 2014
Johnathan Joseph could be cut to free up salary-cap room. I'm not saying the Ravens will go after him if he's available. Joseph is probably too expensive, especially if the Ravens are keeping Lardarius Webb and his big cap number. The point is it's a stronger likelihood that the Ravens will sign a corner who's been cut than one whose contract has expired (unrestricted free agent).
@jamisonhensley: There are two big decisions facing the Ravens at wide receiver: the futures of Steve Smith and Torrey Smith. No one has asked Steve Smith about retirement, and I'm not sure he would answer if questioned. Smith has made a strong impact in his first season, leading the team in receptions (61) and receiving yards (889). Joe Flacco makes an effort to keep him involved. But Smith turns 36 next year and is a very strong personality. I think it will be the Ravens who ultimately decide whether Steve Smith is on the team or not in 2015. The other issue is with Torrey Smith, who will be a free agent this offseason. The Ravens would like to keep Torrey Smith, and he seems to enjoy being here. I see the Ravens retaining Torrey Smith as long as another team doesn't significantly overspend on him.
@jamisonhensley chances Steve Smith, Sr. retires after this year? If he does, do the Ravens stand pat with their current WR corps?— Leonard Monfredo (@lmonfredo2) December 10, 2014