Safety focus remains Woodson, not Marion

RAVENS NOTEBOOK

Agent for Dolphin initiated talks, according to team

Pro Football

April 11, 2001|By Jamison Hensley | Jamison Hensley,SUN STAFF

The Ravens' focus at safety remains Rod Woodson, not Brock Marion.

There had been speculation out of Miami that the Ravens had expressed interest in Marion, a Dolphins free agent. But according to the Ravens, any talks concerning Marion have been initiated by his agent, Jordan Woy.

The Ravens' first option is to retain Woodson, a nine-time Pro Bowl selection. Woodson, 36, became a free agent when the Ravens declined to pick up the option on his contract. He had a salary cap number of $5 million and would return at a lower price. Ozzie Newsome, the Ravens vice president of player personnel, indicated the chances of any signings before the draft were "remote.""[Woodson's agent] Eugene Parker and I have had good ongoing negotiations," Newsome said. "There is a real good chance that Rod will remain a member of the Baltimore Ravens."

The Ravens have a history with Marion that the team would like to forget. In March 1997, Marion was ready to be introduced as a Raven at an announced news conference until the team discovered a fractured shoulder blade that hadn't fully healed.

No schedule yet

The Ravens are still waiting on their regular-season schedule.

The league, which had planned to announce the schedule last Tuesday, has had to delay the release because of an unexpected problem regarding the Philadelphia Eagles. The NFL had scheduled a Monday night game at Veterans Stadium on Sept. 24, an open date that was reserved by the Phillies for a possible makeup day for postponed games.

The league now has to rework its original plan and is expected to announce its schedule later this week. The Ravens' non-divisional schedule consists of the Indianapolis Colts, Minnesota Vikings and Chicago Bears at home and the Denver Broncos, Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Green Bay Packers on the road.

Festival at stadium

The Ravens' Spring Football Festival will be held at PSINet Stadium on April 21, the first day of the draft. It's a six-hour event that will start at 11:30 a.m. and include autograph sessions with players, the debut of the team's highlight film, photos on the 50-yard line with the Super Bowl trophy and live draft coverage on the video screens.

Tickets are $12 for adults and $7 for children 12 and under and can be purchased by calling 410-481-SEAT or logging onto the team's Web site (www.ravenszone.net). Parking at the stadium is free.

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