Hey Jamison: Baltimore Sun Ravens beat reporter answers reader questions

Hey, Jamison: No one is talking about the fact that [Brandon] McKinney has now supplanted Cory Redding as starter. Can you give us a little more information on what happened? If you can't lose your position because of injury, then it must mean he has outplayed him? That would be my guess. Thanks in advance.

Irene, Owings Mills

Hey, Irene: McKinney, who was undrafted coming out of Michigan State in 2006, has been one of the pleasant surprises of the year. He played so well early in the year that the Ravens went with him over rookie nose tackle Terrence Cody. McKinney's strong efforts earned him the shot at filling in for Redding when he had a concussion. Redding is healthy again, but the Ravens obviously like what they see in McKinney. Redding will still contribute, especially in passing situations as Trevor Pryce did. But the message is clear: The Ravens will put the best players out on the field. At this point, McKinney is playing like one of the top guys on defense.

Hey, Jamison: What was the difference between the three-man rush used by the Patriots and the three-man rush used by the Ravens? It seemed that Joe was so pressured by the rush he had to dump the ball to a stationary [Ray] Rice whereas [Tom] Brady had to continually dump the ball 10-20 yards downfield to open receivers. Do you think that five guys blocking three should give him the time to rotate away from pressure to give his receivers time to clear?

Adam, Pasadena

Hey, Adam: The best number to use for this answer is seven — which is the number of years that Brady has on Joe Flacco in the NFL. Much of what separates quarterbacks in the fourth quarter comes down to experience. Brady is already established as one of the best quarterbacks in NFL history. Flacco is trying to establish himself as one of the top quarterbacks in the league this year. Plus, you have to put the situation in context. Brady was playing from behind, so he had to take shots downfield. Flacco was protecting the lead, so he dumped the ball off to Rice. In the Ravens' minds, it was smarter to give the ball to Rice (who can break a big play) and not throw a pass that could get intercepted.

Ravens beat reporter Jamison Hensley will answer readers' questions in Friday's Ravens Weekend section. To submit a question send it to sports@baltsun.com, using "Hey Jamison" in the subject field. Please include your name, where you live and a phone number so we can verify your question.

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