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ExtremeRavens: The Sanctuary

No Sophmore Slump for Joe


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I was reading an article on the Ravens website and thought we hadn't been talking about the great season Joe is having. It's not Pro Bowl worthy [he's ranked 13th amoung NFL QB's], but in his second season he has taken steps forward and is growing into a solid NFL starting QB.

 

I don't know about you but this is a breath of fresh air for me after what we, as fans, have lived through with Ravens QB's of the past. I've been hesitant to declare the Ravens have their long term franchise QB only because 10 years of futility have me in the "I'll believe it when I see it" mode.

Well, I see it.

 

Defenses have more tape and experience playing against him but his numbers improved over last year. That is what I needed to see.

Joe's no fluke...no product of the system. Cam has put more on his sholders in year 2 and opened up the playbook.

 

Here's the growth...

 

Last year, he became the first-ever rookie to win two playoff games in the NFL, helping guide the Ravens to an 11-5 regular-season record and the AFC Championship. Flacco went completed 257 of 428 passes for 2,971 yards, 14 touchdowns and 12 interceptions on the season.

 

This season, it’s clear that Flacco is more comfortable with offensive coordinator Cam Cameron’s system and the players around him, as the signal-caller is doing more to move the football. He is now 304-of-480 for 3,511 yards with 21 scores and 12 picks.

http://www.baltimoreravens.com/News/Articles/2009/12/Flacco_Nearing_Several_Records.aspx

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A win Sunday and he will continue his string of leading the Ravens into the playoffs.

Not too shabby.

 

Joe is also in with some great company...

 

Flacco's maturation is on pace with some of the NFL's most-respected quarterbacks, however. Through his first 31 games, Flacco has a higher quarterback rating than Petyon Manning posted in his first 32 contests. He has thrown for nearly 500 more yards than the Chargers' Philip Rivers did through his first two seasons. Flacco is averaging more passing yards per game than Tom Brady did over the same span.

 

Statistically, Flacco is having a slightly better sophomore season than Brady and Rivers had. His quarterback rating is a hair off Manning's (89.5 versus Manning's 90.7).

http://www.baltimoreravens.com/News/Articles/2009/12/Flacco_Nearing_Several_Records.aspx

 

The future?

Ozzie's got him the line and the running game.

Now...think of what Joe can do with an upgraded receiving corps.

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From John Clayton:

 

We've been kicking around the importance of quarterbacks all season in this mailbag. The NFL is a passing league geared around the play of quarterbacks, and that is even more pronounced by the way the playoffs are shaking out.

 

I've used the term "elite" to describe a quarterback who completes better than 60 percent of his passes, throws for more than 220 yards a game, has fourth-quarter comeback ability and puts up 21 or more points on the scoreboard. The group had 14 members, beginning with Peyton Manning and ending with Joe Flacco.

 

http://sports.espn.go.com/nfl/columns/story?columnist=clayton_john&id=4781193

 

Like you stated max, Flacco is only going to get better. I think it is obvious that he has surpassed his draft class rival Matt Ryan. Ryan has more weapons on offense and is going through his own sophomore slump.

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It's irrelevant to this subject, but that article you posted really ticked me off, Cleet. I can't stand John Clayton whatsoever. Half of the QB's in the league are "elite"? Throwing for 220 yards a game is "elite"? I don't know if he just can't find any new ways to make as many NFL friends as possible, but he's really becoming a caricature; I say that because his articles are like this more and more.

 

Flacco's maturation is on pace with some of the NFL's most-respected quarterbacks, however. Through his first 31 games, Flacco has a higher quarterback rating than Petyon Manning posted in his first 32 contests. He has thrown for nearly 500 more yards than the Chargers' Philip Rivers did through his first two seasons. Flacco is averaging more passing yards per game than Tom Brady did over the same span.

 

Statistically, Flacco is having a slightly better sophomore season than Brady and Rivers had. His quarterback rating is a hair off Manning's (89.5 versus Manning's 90.7).

These are the important stats. Another important one is that Flacco has played every game since he joined the team. He's a tough guy, and it gets overlooked.

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I like Joe but I wonder if he has had a bit of a sophomore slump. Some games he really looks like he has grown as a player, other games he hasnt looked good at all, often making rookie type mistakes. He has really looked bad both times against the Bengals, and the Packers and Colts too. (it was the Colts game where he threw the bad INT near the end across his body in the end zone on 2nd down, wasnt it?)

 

I wonder how his season would be viewed if Ray Rice hadnt developed into the player he is. In some game it seems like Rice was the only target Flacco could find, not that that is completely his fault.

 

I dont mean to be overly critical, I am more convinced now than I was last year that Flacco can be a good QB in this league, but if pressed I would say he may have had a bit of a slump.

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