There has been talk during the offseason concerning Baltimore Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco and concern by some that the team can’t win with him at quarterback, but more specifically not win against Ben Roethlisberger and the Pittsburgh Steelers.
While Flacco has a couple wins against the Steelers, he lost in the AFC title game during his rookie season, at home last year to concede the AFC North Division title and in the AFC Divisional Playoff round after that. So, there is some evidence to support the aforementioned theory.
However, it also should be noted that Flacco has played just three NFL seasons. And at 6-foot-6 and 238 pounds, he’s big and tough with a strong arm. Flacco also has improved markedly with each passing season, keeping in mind that he’s played in just three as a pro.
Flacco has started all 16 regular-season games during each NFL year. He completed 60 percent of his passes for 2,971 yards and 14 touchdowns with 12 interceptions as a rookie in 2008. And he followed that with a 63.1 completion rate for 3,613 yards and 21 scores with 12 picks in 2009.
But this past season, Flacco completed 62.6 percent of his passes for 3,622 yards and 25 touchdowns with just 10 interceptions and a 93.6 quarterback rating. He’s been sacked more than 30 times each season with a high number at 40 last year, but that was as much a product of the Ravens’ offensive line issues as it was his immobility.
Flacco also has four playoff road wins to tie the NFL’s all-time mark for a starting quarterback. And with three offensive picks in the opening four rounds during this year’s NFL Draft, the Ravens are trying to provide Flacco with more weapons. Second- and fourth-round wideouts Torrey Smith and Tandon Doss are expected to make an immediate impact.
So, while questions remain about the Ravens ability to achieve more success in the future with Flacco, they should be answered definitively this season.