SI.com senior writer Don Banks spoke with Trent Dilfer today, as no one in the world probably has a greater grasp for what Baltimore Ravens QB Joe Flacco is going through leading into this weekend’s AFC Championship Game than the former NFL QB. "I think Joe in his heart of hearts probably wants to be anything but me,'' Dilfer, the former Super Bowl-winning Ravens quarterback turned ESPN analyst, said Wednesday, in a typical burst of candor.
Here is an excerpt from the Sports Illustrated story:
For much of Dilfer’s 11-year career, he was always distinguished under the term "game-manager", one of the more back handed comments an NFL QB can be called. He guided the 2000 Baltimore Ravens to a Super Bowl victory but that team will always be known as a great defensive team who’s offense didn’t make mistakes to cost them the game. One piece of advice Dilfer would give Flacco is that you can’t change what people think, you just have to stay within yourself and play to the best of you ability. Dilfer said, "You can't change people's perceptions, it's impossible. Not by talking, and even sometimes not by playing. It can take years to change it. I understand his frustrations. It's much harder to be a quarterback in a ball-control offense, because you have less opportunities, so any failure is magnified. If you're throwing the ball 45 times a game, and you dirt a couple, throw a pick, and miss a couple reads, but you still have 32-33 other really good plays, that's okay. But if you have 24 attempts, and you have four or five mistakes, that's all anybody remembers. It's just the nature of ball-control versus a pass-first offense."