Some of you might be familiar with my article/column/interviews entitled Ask Brian. Clearly press conferences aren’t what they used to be when Brian Billick was the team’s head coach. John Harbaugh’s pressers have been largely subdued and his answers somewhat vanilla and/or canned.
Recently however, there have been hints of spice at Harbaugh’s pressers including this recent exchange with the Baltimore media.
John Harbaugh (“JH”): Nice to see everyone again and thanks for coming. What’s on your mind today?
Aaron Wilson: Coach I was wondering if there were any new injuries to report after today’s practice and also could you update us on the status of Jared Gaither’s AC joint injury.
JH: No, nothing that we would want to talk about or that’s really of interest outside of our building. What we’re trying to do is win football games. Sharing information that might be detrimental to the achievement of that goal undermines the best interest of this organization. However we do think that Jared has shown remarkable toughness and not only has he progressed as a player, he’s matured emotionally. You can expect to see him go on Sunday unless of course we think that he isn’t one of the best 45 players that we can field to help us execute our game plan. We’ll have to see at 8:15 on Sunday night.
Jerry Coleman (“JC”): That’s interesting coach because one player who did suit up but ended up being purely a spectator was Willis McGahee. Why didn’t Willis play against the lowly Bengals coach? Don’t you think that would have been an appropriate game to knock off some of that rust?
JH: Rust? What are you talking about? Who are you? Willis had a fine week of practice last week. We just felt that Le’Ron and Ray Rice gave us a better chance to win the football game. We’ll play Willis when we feel he can help us more so than the other two. Did that answer your question?
JC: Well it seems as though Willis is being benched for reasons not related to performance. Can you confirm that?
JH: No I can’t.
JC: Would you say that he’s in the doghouse?
JH: Doghouse? There are no doghouses here. Do you see a doghouse?
Chris McAlister, Frank Walker, Willis McGahee (off in the distance): woof, woof, woof-woof, woof
JH: Who let the dogs out?
Damon Yaffe (“DY): Speaking of dogs coach, fans have been dogging me about your special teams units, particularly the kick coverage teams. Now at Boys Latin, we coach the JV team to stay in their lanes, fire out when required, contain, hold at the point of attack, rip through the block and make the tackle. Given your background as a special teams coordinator, I expected special teams to play a bigger factor in the team’s success. Why haven’t they coach?
JH: We would not want to talk about that outside of our staff meetings. Are you part of our staff?
DY: I’d like to be. I think I can help.
JH: Really? I’m sure the now defunct Baltimore Blackbirds would say otherwise. Stick to Boys Latin dog! Can we get serious here?
Bruce Cunningham (“BC”): Coach what is your favorite color?
JH: This is going somewhere I suppose?
BC: Well let me be more specific, what is your favorite Ravens’ uniform ensemble?
JH: Next question…
BC: Coach, have you listened to 105.7 The Fan? I host the 1-3 PM slot. It’s called the Bruce Cunningham Show and it’s going very well and I think it shows.
JH: Oh it shows…
Anita Marks (“AM”): Coach getting back to Willis McGahee for a second…he is a good person and a nice kid and it breaks my heart to see you being so mean to him. Plus I envisioned him assuming a role in Cam Cameron’s offense similar to that of LaDainian Tomlinson when Cam was in San Diego. I-I-I invested a first round draft pick in McGahee in 17 of my 22 fantasy leagues so obviously his playing time is important to me.
JH: So is there a question anytime in our future or should I say “in a hot second”?
AM: Yes, who is your No. 1 running back on your fantasy team?
JH: Isn’t it obvious? Le’Ron McClain of course!
Nestor Aparicio (“NA”): Harbs, I was wondering if you could help me Sunday night during the game. Just before the second quarter starts, could you look up at the crowd and start chanting IN-DUCT ART, IN-DUCT ART, IN-DUCT ART?
JH: Do you think it will help Art get into the Hall of Fame?
NA: Let me put it to you this way Harbs. If Brian was still the coach, I wouldn’t even have to ask for his help. He would probably go out to midfield and wear one of our WNST t-shirts and hold our IN-DUCT ART posters over his head. You see it is my civic duty, my moral obligation – it is why I was put on this Earth…to lead crusade after crusade in my home town. I challenged Peter Angelos to sell the Orioles – to Free the Birds! Now I’m turning my attention towards the former owner of the Ravens – the polar opposite of Peter Angelos and I want to do all that I can to drive traffic to my website…I mean to help Art get inducted. He is the reason you are here. He is the reason we are all here. He is the reason why WNST and WNST.net the ESPN.com of all things Baltimore, all sports, all the time…in fact we never stop talking Baltimore Sports (catches his breath) is here.
We owe it to Art, Harbs. Can you help? Can you help me in my crusade? Can you help me, Nasty Nestor Aparicio throw that lead block for Art Modell paving the way to his touchdown dance in Canton, Ohio?
JH: Was Free the Bird successful?
NA: Well, define success?
JH: Did Mr. Angelos sell the Orioles?
NA: Well no he didn’t.
JH: I have a football game to win on Sunday son. Maybe you should see if Brian can help during his broadcast this weekend.
NA: Do you think he will?
JH: Is that really frosting on your hair?
Kevin Byrne (Ravens’ Sr. VP Public & Community Relations): That’s all the questions for now folks…thanks for joining us today.
JH: Yes thanks for your time and have a great day and best of luck to Art Modell, an outstanding man. (walks away)
Bruce Cunningham: Give me a call John! Send me an email! I hate me some Steelers! Hey what’s your favorite Four Tops song?
Anita Marks: WE WANT WILLIS, WE WANT WILLIS
Jerry Coleman: What would you do if one of your players had a handgun violation?
Nestor Aparicio: (jumping up and down) IN-DUCT ART, IN-DUCT ART
PROGRAMMING NOTE: This press conference is purely fictional and is presented purely for entertainment purposes only.