Harbaugh says report on Zorn-Cameron rift was inaccurate

Austin officially named Ravens secondary coach

January 28, 2011|By Jamison Hensley, The Baltimore Sun

According to a league source, Ravens coach John Harbaugh and offensive coordinator Cam Cameron spent all day Tuesday questioning quarterbacks coach Jim Zorn about his teaching methods with Joe Flacco and were concerned about Zorn being insubordinate. Zorn was fired by the Ravens on Thursday.

Harbaugh disputed that report, saying it is "inaccurate and unfair to Jim Zorn" and "in no way does it describe Jim's relationship with the Ravens, and that includes with his fellow coaches while here and our players."

But Harbaugh didn't specify any reason for Zorn's termination. "Jim's departure from the Ravens will remain as private as these matters can be," Harbaugh said Friday, "but we feel it's necessary to at least point out that this report is inaccurate. It is not true in any way, shape or form."

Austin on board

The Ravens officially announced the hiring of Teryl Austin as their new secondary coach Friday.

Austin was the defensive coordinator at the University of Florida last season. His ties with Harbaugh go back to the University of Pittsburgh, where Harbaugh was the tight ends coach and Austin was a defensive back.

"He's an outstanding teacher and motivator who has been successful in both the NFL and at the college level," Harbaugh said. "His intelligence and experience will add to our defensive mix."

Austin takes over for Chuck Pagano, who was promoted to defensive coordinator last week.

"Knowing Teryl had other opportunities, we're very happy that he decided to become a Raven," Harbaugh said. "We think our players will both improve under his direction and enjoy playing for him. He has helped two teams — the Cardinals and the Seahawks — reach the Super Bowl. That's a good addition to our staff."

Under Austin last season, Florida's defense recorded 22 interceptions, fourth most in the nation. The Gators allowed the fewest total yards in SEC games last season, giving up 310.8 yards per game, including 175.5 passing.

"This is another great opportunity to work for a class organization with outstanding coaches and players," Austin said. "I couldn't ask for anything better, and I'm excited to get to work. My goal is to do whatever I can to help the team and help the players get better. The Baltimore defense has set a high standard, and it's my job to uphold that standard and help the players be at their best. I'm excited to enter a situation with great players who play in a great scheme, knowing they take a lot of pride in what they are doing."

End zone: Billy Cundiff's five-year extension with the Ravens is now official, according to the Pro Bowl kicker's agent. Cundiff's new deal is reportedly worth $15 million. He agreed in principle on the extension last week and is in Hawaii preparing to play in his first Pro Bowl. … Funeral services have been set for Brian Reed, the 29-year-old brother of Ravens safety Ed Reed, for Saturday at 11 a.m. at Mr. Zion Baptist Church in St. Rose, according to the Associated Press. Reed's body was recovered after he had jumped into the Mississippi on Jan. 7. Police had been chasing him after Reed's parents called them saying Reed, 29, took a car belonging to his younger brother, Edwin, without permission, which is a crime. A Thursday autopsy confirmed Reed's identity and found the preliminary cause of death to be accidental drowning. … Jason Brooks has been promoted from assistant to the offense to quality control coach for the offense. … Friday marked the 10-year anniversary of the Ravens' 34-7 victory over the New York Giants in the Super Bowl.

jamison.hensley@baltsun.com

twitter.com/jamisonhensley

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