Joe Flacco won't play in Ravens final preseason game; Tyrod Taylor might

If Tyrod Taylor clears the concussion protocol, he will be available for Thursday's game against St. Louis. - Rob Carr

The sixth-year quarterback will have the night off when the Ravens take on the Rams.

The Ravens don't want to risk any injury to the quarterback they're paying $120.6 million for on Thursday night.

On Tuesday, coach John Harbaugh announced Flacco won't play against the Rams in the fourth and final preseason game.

That would mean that if he's cleared the NFL's concussion protocol, backup quarterback Tyrod Taylor will start. He'd surely see significant playing time as well since it will likely be the last extensive minutes he'd receive before the regular season begins.

However, the Ravens are still waiting on official clearance for Taylor to play.

"I know he’s passed the physical balance part of it," Harbaugh told reporters Tuesday. "We’re waiting for the test result on the other part of it. [I] haven’t heard anything negative on that. [I] just haven’t heard yet."

If Taylor is unable to go, the quarterback duties will largely fall on third-stringer Caleb Hanie, who's been with the Ravens throughout the offseason and preseason. He's still hoping the Ravens decide to keep three quarterbacks.

It could also be an opportunity for rookie quarterback Dayne Crist, who was signed on Sunday to get some game action. Though Crist won't make the Ravens' roster, it could be a chance for him to put some solid film for other teams to see.

As it stands now, Harbaugh expects Taylor to be available Thursday.

"As soon as he passes the test, he’s cleared to play," Harbaugh said. "We do not anticipate that being a problem; we really haven’t. If it is, that would be a little surprising."

Follow me on twitter: @JasonHButt

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