Pro Football Focus's Sam Monson paid a visit to Baltimore Ravens training camp last Friday and made some observations about the 2016 Baltimore Ravens in his article here. Unfortunately, just as PFF and Sam Monson are well known for, he just couldn't help himself by taking a little dig at Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco and why the Ravens should look at other quarterback options. Heck, the section where he talks about Flacco in his article is entitled "Same old Flacco." Right from the get go, you know where this is going.
"Judging by the crowd of fans at camp and the cheers and chants of his name, the Baltimore faithful still loves Flacco, but practice saw the kind of inconsistency we have come to expect from a player capable of blowing hot and cold," Monson says. "He made some nice passes of the day, and during the two minute-drill late in the session he marched the team right down to the red zone...only to throw a game-killing interception in the end zone." The funny thing is, that "game-killing interception" was deflected off the hands of tight end Darren Waller and picked by safety Kendrick Lewis. We know if that happens to a Tom Brady, Aaron Rodgers, Tony Romo or Ben Roethlisberger, Monson probably mentions the dropped pass, but it's Flacco. Got to support the narrative.
Unfortunately, It gets better. "But they can't be too much poor play away from starting to think about future options," Sam said. That quote right there made me laugh.
First off, why would the Ravens think at this point in time to search for future options at quarterback? It really doesn't make sense that since the day Flacco signed the contract after the Super Bowl you've heard many media pundits including Monson proclaiming the Ravens could've gotten better options for cheap. What? When someone like Flacco is on your team, you keep him. The Ravens know what its like to be on the quarterback carousel. Kyle Boller, Trent Dilfer, Anthony Wright, Scott Mitchell, Vinny Testaverde, Chris Redman, Elvis Grbac, the list goes on. My question to the media pundits who question the Ravens decision to sign Flacco, a guy who has only had one losing season in his eight year career, who could the Ravens have gotten to start the 2013 and now 2016 seasons after he signed both contracts? The answer is nobody. You just don't let a quarterback who has helped get the team to six playoff appearances in eight years walk out the door. Is Flacco inconsistent, sure, but so are a lot of starting quarterbacks in this league that are not named Tom Brady or Aaron Rodgers.
This is the same Flacco that was a dropped pass away from leading the Ravens to Super Bowl XLVI and went toe to toe with Tom Brady in the AFC Divisional playoff game and gave the defense not one, but two 14 point leads that were washed away by the defense. Yeah, it hasn't been easy for Flacco since the Super Bowl. Offensive coordinators leaving, lack of weapons, bad offensive lines in 2013 and 2015 that caused his MCL and ACL injuries, bad defenses. I'm not saying Flacco's been perfect, he hasn't, but lets chill on talk of the Ravens looking at other options. When I look at the 2013 season, Flacco, despite having one of the worst offensive lines in football and a horrid receiving core, was still able to lead the team to an 8-6 record and right in the #6 seed in the playoffs before suffering that MCL sprain against the Detroit Lions that killed the teams chances of making the postseason that year. Last year, how many times did he give the team the lead only to watch Dean Pees's defense give it away. The Ravens hope that they have put the pieces in place to help Flacco succeed and hope that Flacco will not be affected by the torn ACL he suffered in 2015.
What do you fans think? If Flacco struggles this year, should the team consider other options? Comment below and sound off.