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Raven 2016 positional grades: Quarterback and Running Backs/Fullbacks

Cleveland Browns v Baltimore Ravens Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images

We begin our 2016 individual player grades in the offensive backfield.

Joe Flacco: C+

Flacco threw for over 4000 yards for the first time in his career, and would go on to set the Ravens single season passing record in 2016. Flacco had a huge game against the Dolphins in Week 13, throwing for 381 yards and four touchdowns. Flacco also led a clutch drive for the Ravens against the Steelers on Christmas Day, capped off with Kyle Juszczyk falling into the end zone, giving the Ravens the lead for the time being. However, Flacco did not consistently play at an elite level throughout the year, and had multiple brutal moments, which largely hurt his season grade. Flacco threw 15 interceptions this season, including one in every game to close out the year starting in Week 12. Flacco also had four games in 2016 with multiple interceptions thrown. After advancing into the Eagles red zone in the fourth quarter of the Ravens Week 15 game, Flacco would throw an interception in the end zone that gave the Eagles life, and very nearly cost the Ravens the game. This type of unreliability does not make a quarterback elite.

Ryan Mallett: N/A

Mallett only threw six passes this season, which is not enough to give a grade.

Terrance West: B

West led the Ravens in rushing, in what was a breakout season for the third year man out of Towson. West averaged 4.0 yards per carry, and scored five touchdowns on the year. He fumbled twice, but the Ravens recovered both times. West largely outplayed Justin Forsett early in the season, and essentially drove Forsett out of Baltimore against Oakland in Week 4, where West rushed for 113 yards. However, West would be outplayed by rookie Kenneth Dixon down the stretch, and did not look to be as explosive and Dixon. West only had two carries against the Patriots in Week 14, in a game where the backfield was dominated by Dixon.

Kenneth Dixon: B+

Dixon missed the beginning of the season still recovering from an injury in the preseason. He would go on to have an extremely impressive rookie season totaling 544 yards from scrimmage. Dixon continually provided playmaking ability to the Ravens backfield. Dixon provides the Ravens with a combination of speed and strength similar to that of Ray Rice. Dixon proved as the season progressed that the Ravens needed to get the ball into his hands whenever possible. His progression and improvement throughout the year may well have earned him the starting job come the 2017 season. His value however was capped due to the Ravens incessant need to throw the ball instead of hand it off to the electric rookie. Dixon is graded as B+ however as he struggled at times in pass protection, and had a few drops when playing as a receiver, notably in the first half against the Patriots.

Javorious Allen: F

Allen only had seven carries all season, and was a healthy scratch for nearly the entire second half of the season. Allen had a great rookie campaign after Justin Forsett went down with an injury, but was not able to build on last year. Allen lost all of his playing time to West and Dixon, and doesn’t seem likely to receive many snaps anytime soon.

Kyle Juszczyk: A

Juszczyk has revitalized the use of the fullback in the NFL. As many teams are phasing out the position, the Ravens have found themselves a star. Juszczyk not only can run the ball as well as makes catches as a receiver, but he is an exceptional run blocker. Juszczyk continually opened up holes for Dixon and West. The fourth year man out of Harvard proved his worth to the team in his contract year, and turned his performance into a Pro-Bowl selection.

Lorenzo Taliaferro: N/A

Taliaferro only dressed in three games and had just one carry all year.