Bengals News

AFC North Positional Rankings: Quarterback

connorhowe
facebooktwitterreddit
4 of 5

Jul 30, 2015; Owings Mills, MD, USA; Baltimore Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco (5) throws to wide receiver Breshad Perriman (18) during day one of training camp at Under Armour Performance Center. Mandatory Credit: Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports

2. Baltimore Ravens

Starter: Joe Flacco

Backup: Matt Schaub

“Joe Cool” has been one of the NFL’s most consistent quarterbacks since entering the league as a Raven in 2008. He has started every game since being drafted, he has thrown 148 career touchdown passes (and has rushed for 10) to just 90 interceptions. Flacco’s career passer rating is a solid 84.8, and he even has a Super Bowl ring.

While he is a solid regular season quarterback, Flacco is one of the NFL’s best come postseason play. His 25 career postseason touchdowns in only 15 games is impressive; equally impressive is his ability to play turnover-free football (he has only thrown 10 interceptions in his 15 playoff games).

And Flacco’s 2012 postseason run may be the best quarterback playoff performance in NFL history. With 1,140 passing yards, 11 touchdown passes and zero interceptions in four playoff victories, Flacco proved himself one of the NFL’s top quarterbacks. Factor in that he guided the Ravens past the Andrew Luck-led Colts, the Tom Brady-led Patriots, the Peyton Manning-led Broncos and the Colin Kaepernick-led 49ers, four outstanding teams–and the accomplishment of beating four great quarterbacks and teams to win a Super Bowl instantly becomes much more impressive.

Since winning the Super Bowl, however, Flacco has cooled off. Surehanded receiver Anquan Boldin was traded to the 49ers after the Ravens’ Super Bowl victory, and Torrey Smith just signed a new deal to play for San Francisco this offseason.

Flacco’s 2013 stats suffered; losing Boldin could have been a factor–Flacco threw 19 touchdowns to 22 interceptions. However, after signing former Panther, Steve Smith Sr., Flacco rebounded in 2014, throwing for 27 touchdowns to 12 interceptions and posting an impressive 62.1 completion percentage.

Torrey Smith’s departure leaves Flacco with 36-year-old Steve Smith and rookie Breshaud Perriman as his top targets, which could be a major concern moving forward. However, Flacco’s lack of a true arsenal passing game doesn’t make him any less of an outstanding quarterback; he has earned his spot as the second-best quarterback in the AFC North and as one of the best in all of football.

facebooktwitterreddit