Since being signed Sept. 3, James Ihedigbo has been a versatile player for the Ravens. The 6-foot-1, 214-pound Ihedigbo started three games at strong safety for Bernard Pollard when he was dealing with a rib injury and finished the regular season with 19 tackles and one sack. The six-year veteran has also contributed on special teams, finishing with six tackles in the regular season. Ihedigbo spent the first four years of his career with the New York Jets before going to Super Bowl XLVI last season as a member of the New England Patriots, the Ravens' opponent in Sunday's AFC championship game. Ihedigbo, a 29-year-old native of Amherst, Mass., who played at the University of Massachusetts, discussed returning to Gillette Stadium in Foxborough, Mass., as a member of the opposing team.
Last year, you were a member of the Patriots when they slipped past the Ravens in the AFC title contest. How does it feel to have switched sides for Sunday's AFC championship game?
"It's great. I was in the same situation when I was with the Jets in 2010 and we went up there. It's good to be in this situation. You want to be playing for a chance to go to the Super Bowl. It just so happens that our opponent is the New England Patriots, but it's the two best teams, and we're going to be ready to go."
Any insider information on Patriots receivers Wes Welker and Brandon Lloyd and tight end Aaron Hernandez that you can share?
"They're great receivers. They know how to get open, and [quarterback] Tom [Brady] does a great job of getting them the ball. He knows that offense inside and out. If you give him a look pre-snap that he recognizes, he'll roast you. So we've really got to change it up, disguise, and do a good job of covering those guys."
How much insight can you provide about Brady to the defensive coaches?
"A lot of coaches who are coaching here have gone against him a lot longer than I've been in the league — six years. So I don't know how much insight I can give to that. But everyone knows Tom Brady and the kind of quarterback he is and the things he can do with that offense."Copyright © 2015, The Baltimore Sun