December 19, 2012
It’s one thing when someone wants to talk about how good they are. It’s another thing when someone talks about how good they are and fails to live up to those words. This is exactly the case when we discuss Baltimore Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco. It was Flacco who came out and said he is an elite QB in the NFL going into the season. It started it off good, as Flacco and the Ravens were putting up some huge offensive numbers in an effort to become a team that’s more reliant on their offense(As we all know, the Ravens have been known for and carried by their defense in the past). But the team has gone through some turmoil, especially in the last few games. The Ravens have lost three in a row, changed offensive coordinators(which I still don’t understand why if last Sunday against the Denver Broncos was any indication), and Flacco hasn’t exactly been elite as the season has gone on. Maybe Flacco felt like he could follow in the footsteps of New York Giants QB Eil Manning(who Flacco and the Ravens will see this coming Sunday)from last season. At the beginning of last year, Manning said he was an elite QB when everyone was doubting him. Manning went out and put up the best numbers in his career and, of course, led the Giants to their second Super Bowl title in five seasons. It doesn’t appear that same motivational speech is going to work for Flacco. I believe there is two reasons why Flacco isn’t and will not be an elite QB any time soon. The first one is because I never thought Flacco was that good to be an elite QB. I always thought he was an OK quarterback who is good at managing games, but isn’t necessarily the guy who can go out and win games consistently for you. There’s QBs, such as Aaron Rodgers, Tom Brady, Drew Brees, Eil and his older brother, Peyton, and Ben Roethlisberger(among others)who can go out and will their teams to victory. I wouldn’t put Flacco in that class. The other reason is it’s hard to be an elite QB when you’re not even the best player on the Ravens. The team’s best player is running back Ray Rice, and Rice has to be the man to lead the Ravens to the promised land if they’re going to get there. It’s especially true this season because Baltimore’s defense is not what we’ve become used to seeing. Anyone who watches football knows Rice should be getting a lot more opportunities than what he has received in the last few games. I don’t know what’s going on with those offensive coordinators, but they need to go ahead and scrap this whole thing with giving Flacco command of the offensive, whether it’s the former OC Cam Cameron or the new one, Jim Caldwell. That fact is this team is getting a little long in the tooth. When you think about the veterans that has given everything to the Ravens, from Ray Lewis, to Ed Reed, to Terrell Suggs, there isn’t too much time left for these grizzled vets to play and earn a much deserved Super Bowl ring. Therefore, you have to do the things that are part of your identity, and that’s giving Rice the ball more. Maybe Flacco will be elite someday, but that day has not arrived yet. We don’t need to see the team go down in the event of waiting to see if Flacco is elite.
By Charles Taylor