QB Joe Flacco, Baltimore Ravens
HT: 6-6, WT: 236, Born: 1-16-1985, College: Delaware, Drafted: Round 1, Pick 18
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Average draft position
Current as of May 21st. [Full ADP list]Overall: M Vick (119), A Boldin (120), Joe Flacco (121), S Rice (122), J Cook (123)
Position: A Dalton (117-QB15), M Vick (119-QB16), Joe Flacco (121 - QB17), J Cutler (140-QB18), J Freeman (143-QB19)
Click here for a comparison of these players.
Joe Flacco enters the 2013-14 season trying to justify the massive contract he signed after leading Baltimore to a Super Bowl victory with arguably the best four individual games of his career all consecutively in the postseason. After just three games with three touchdown passes in the entire regular season, Flacco matched that number in his last three games (Divisional Playoffs, AFC Championship Game, and Super Bowl). Almost going the opposite direction of typical quarterback development, his next challenge is to build upon postseason success with a consistent regular season. Baltimore's playoff run was improbable, and if anyone in the organization were asked, they would probably say they'd rather get 12+ wins and have a 1st-round bye as opposed to needing to win four straight playoff games. Flacco will have to show up every week in order for that to happen as he'll be carrying more of the offensive burden than ever before.
Latest NewsRavens | Ray Rice wants to become bigger receiving threat (Mon May 13, 07:59 PM) - Baltimore Ravens RB Ray Rice wants to become a bigger receiving threat out of the backfield in 2013. 'Now that guys know that I'm a threat out of the backfield, I got to use my hands a little more,' Rice said. 'I get pushed a lot coming out of the backfield, and that's a sign of respect, but if I can get my hands and get out on pass routes and continue to get open for Joe Flacco.' Our View: Getting Rice more involved may be key for the Ravens in 2013. We saw them use him more (and Bernard Pierce) after Jim Caldwell took over as the OC after Cam Cameron was fired. They have major question marks in the WR corps behind Torrey Smith and Jacoby Jones. Using Rice more as a receiver (along with more use of the TEs) could be in order.
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|1||at Denver Broncos|
|4||at Buffalo Bills|
|5||at Miami Dolphins|
|6||Green Bay Packers|
|7||at Pittsburgh Steelers|
|9||at Cleveland Browns|
|11||at Chicago Bears|
|12||New York Jets|
|15||at Detroit Lions|
|16||New England Patriots|
|17||at Cincinnati Bengals|
2012 Game Summaries
Week 1 - Flacco was stellar in Week 1 against the Bengals. He was poised in the pocket and showed fantastic touch on mid-range passes throughout the game. Most impressively, Flacco seemed to make the right throw in most every situation. He was able to balance substantial gains with the risk of throwing the ball downfield. His quick start in the passing game paid dividends for four quarters as the Bengals simply could not find a way to stop him. Flacco had excellent rapport with tight end Dennis Pitta, targeting him on a number of passes outside the hashmarks on first and second down. These passes opened up rushing lanes for Ray Rice as the game wore on, allowing the Raven offense to move the ball at will against Cincinnati. Flacco's best pass came on an early touchdown to Anquan Boldin. The quarterback saw Boldin gain a step on his man down the middle of the field and deftly lofted a pass between two defenders. The catch was challenged and upheld on review. Flacco stood tall in the pocket throughout the game and showed very little panic when the Bengals tried to apply pressure. He completed over 70% of his passes for an impressive 10 yards per attempt.
Week 2 - The debate will continue to rage about where Joe Flacco ranks amongst his quarterback counterparts in the NFL, but this game provides more questions than answers. After an outstanding performance against the Cincinnati Bengals in Week 1, Flacco was much less consistent against a more talented Philadelphia Eagles' defense. Flacco's first drop back of the day resulted in a forced fumble from Trent Cole. Flacco was forced to hold onto the football as he looked at Ray Rice running underneath the defense. That moment of slight hesitation allowed Cole to sweep past Michael Oher and punch the ball from Flacco's grasp. It's difficult to blame Flacco, because his offensive line was decimated from left to right, but he could have showed better ball security and awareness to at least take the sack. Flacco learned from that play however and looked to get rid of the ball quickly during throughout the rest of the game. This somewhat negated the effectiveness of Torrey Smith, Jacoby Jones and Anquan Boldin, but allowed Flacco to show off his excellent precision in short and intermediate passing. His first completion was a perfectly thrown pass to tight end Ed Dickson on a slant route. Dickson beat Allen to the inside, but Flacco put the ball in a perfect position to allow him to catch it in stride. The Eagles were giving the Ravens cushions on the outside, which Flacco was more than willing to take advantage of. Dennis Pitta caught two more wide open slants before the Eagles adjusted their coverage. One of the throws to Pitta was very impressive however, as Flacco instantly analyzed the defense and throw a low pass to Pitta in order to prevent a potential interception with a quickly closing Nate Allen. If Flacco had rushed the throw, Allen would have had a shot at the ball. Instead Flacco only gave Pitta a chance at catching the ball. This was very much the gameplan for the Ravens on offense. Flacco started 9/11, with one of those incompletions a result of Ray Rice not being able to locate a well thrown football. Flacco had the Eagles' defense figured out early and eventually put his team in the endzone. Much like the earlier slant throw to Pitta, his sole touchdown pass of the day didn't look like much, but was actually very impressive. The Eagles sent a rare blitz up the middle. Flacco did well to evade DeMeco Ryans, who came free, with a slight shift to the right that Tom Brady has done to perfection over the years. Despite having to evade Ryans, Flacco was able to keep his eyes down field, and even throw a small pump fake, before hitting Jacoby Jones in stride for the touchdown. The throw itself wasn't difficult, Jones was wide open, but the movement, balance and poise made it a very impressive play. The Eagles eventually adjusted to Flacco's approach and disrupted more of the passing game. Flacco was nearly intercepted by the impressive Mychal Kendricks on a slant route in the third quarter that was intended for Pitta. It was an incredible athletic play from Kendricks to break up the pass and it would have been an even more impressive play to pick it off. You couldn't blame Flacco, but the disruption of his rhythm and the change-up in approach from the Eagles did have an effect. Flacco's interception came on a play when he had more time in the pocket than at any other point in the game. After hanging in the pocket for a while, he stepped to the left to evade an eventual rush before trying to pass the ball to Pitta. However, he had stared down his intended receiver, which eventually meant that three Eagles' defenders were in position to make a play on the ball. DeMeco Ryans undercut the route to pick off the pass, while safety Nate Allen likely would have caught it if he hadn't. Flacco never saw either defender and had other options. He could have run for the first down or even thrown the ball away and punted. The Ravens were up by 10 points at the time and were close to midfield. That one decision was major in the game, while Flacco's inability to hit deep routes consistently prevented them from putting more points on the board. The ball sailed on him seemingly everytime he attempted a pass deep down the sideline, and when he finally connected on a deep ball down the right sideline, he cost his receiver an opportunity to score an easy touchdown. Torrey Smith beat Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie, but Flacco threw the ball too close to the sideline and didn't lead Smith towards the endzone. Smith was wide open and still adjusted to the football to make the 40 yard reception, but an accurate pass would have allowed him to walk into the endzone, opposed to falling onto the ground. Flacco did throw one incredible deep pass to Jacoby Jones that would have sealed the victory with five minutes remaining, but Jones was called for offensive pass interference. Nonetheless, the throw from Flacco, which he made under pressure, was an elite pass.
Week 3 - Not since week three of last season had Flacco thrown for more than 380 yards. He also hadn’t completed 28 passes since week 9 of the 2011 season. He did both against the Patriots. As impressive as his stats were though, Flacco could have been better. It would not have been unrealistic for him to be intercepted five times. His first interception was thrown into triple coverage and left short. Later in the first quarter, he overthrew Torrey Smith by ten yards but was bailed out when Smith slapped the ball away from the defender. In fact, he only finished the first quarter with ten total passing yards. Flacco’s first two touchdowns were each the result of a great play by his receivers. On his first score, he under threw a wide open Smith causing his wide receiver to go over his defender and make a spectacular catch. Flacco’s second touchdown was a simple toss out to Dennis Pitta in the flat. Pitta then hurdled a defender and went 20 yards for the touchdown.
Even though he totaled 380 yards, Flacco was inconsistent on the night. He proved so in the last drive of the game when he lofted a ball into the Patriots secondary that would have been intercepted if not for the defender falling. Flacco did improve as the game went on and showed flashes of spectacular touch, though. His timing with Smith was nearly perfect most of the night and he also improved his deep ball. Last week, Flacco only completed four passes of more than 20 yards. Against New England, he torched the secondary for nine 20+ yard gains that included two touchdowns.
Week 4 - Given a clean pocket, Flacco can really spin it. He made an array of picture-perfect throws on deep and intermediate routes. When pressured, he often threw the ball away or was inaccurate. (Michael Oher had a brutal game.) Still, Flacco completed sweet bucket throws to Tandon Doss, Torrey Smith and Anquan Boldin. His lone TD strike came on a bullet to Smith, threading the needle between defenders. In the third quarter, Flacco took the ball in himself on a bootleg when Dennis Pitta, his potential target, stumbled in the end zone.
Flacco threw his first red zone interception in 126 attempts when, under minimal rush, he lofted a touch pass for Boldin in the end zone with two defenders in the area. It was easier for LB Craig Robertson to adjust to the ball than Boldin, as the ball was not thrown hard enough or angled correctly to lead the receiver into the back corner of the end zone. Bad choice, bad throw.
Week 5 - The Ravens didn’t need much from Flacco against the Chiefs and that’s good, because he didn’t give them much. Flacco was plagued by drops for a good portion of the game, including several from Anquan Boldin. Boldin’s first drop came at the goal line in the first quarter and cost Flacco one of his few opportunities for a touchdown. After connecting with Boldin early in the second quarter on a very well thrown slant, he had two more passes dropped, including a beautifully thrown ball deep down the left sideline. Not only were his receivers dropping the ball early, they also struggled to get open. Flacco took two coverage sacks and was forced to throw two balls away in the first three Ravens drives. A forty three yard gain in the third quarter came on a nice throw on a 20 yard post top Boldin, who then broke two tackles to turn it into a big gain. Later in the quarter Flacco made his one big mistake, throwing late to Boldin on the right sideline, giving Brandon Flowers the opportunity to jump the route and intercept the pass. He bounced right back with a 26 yard pass to Torrey Smith on the next drive but that was the last big play of the day in the air. Flacco sealed the victory with a 16 yard scramble on 3rd and 15 late in the fourth quarter.
Week 6 - Flacco was fairly uneven against the Cowboys. Despite finishing the day with 17 completions in 26 attempts, he was unable to complete any passes deep downfield and his high yards per attempt were skewed by 5 long completions where most of the work was done by the receiver after the catch. That said, his passes looked crisp and he was poised in the pocket despite the aggressive Dallas pass rush. Flacco managed to only suffer one sack and did an excellent job throwing the ball to places that prevented interceptions. His best throw came on a 20 yard completion to Anquan Boldin to the right side in the second quarter. On the play, Flacco correctly identified that the Cowboys were sending a cornerback on a blitz. He calmly took the snap and threw a hard pass to Boldin, leading him on the run for a large gain. The drive ultimately resulted in a touchdown.
Week 7 - Flacco entered the week 7 contest against the Texans on a short list of possible MVP candidates due to the Ravens 5-1 start. Unfortunately, he was unable to perform like an MVP player against the Texans stout defense. He had one ball intercepted and returned for a touchdown. On the play, Texans lineman JJ Watt deflected the pass at the line of scrimmage leading to the interception. This was Watt's 5th deflected pass resulting in interception of the year. Outside of the interception, Flacco was unable to sustain drives and gain large chunks of yardage through the air. Flacco finished the day completing fewer than 50 percent of his passes and the passes he did complete averaged a mere 7 yards per catch. Flacco's troubles came primarily from the Texans aggressive pass rush that limited his time to throw and limited the time his receivers had to get downfield. Flacco's best throw came on a 15 yard touchdown throw to Tandon Doss. On the play, Doss lined up to the right side and Flacco quickly fed him the ball for the score. On the play, Flacco correctly sensed the Texans bringing extra pressure up the middle and wisely made a quick strike to his outside receiver. Otherwise, Flacco was limited to short passes on hitch routes and receiver slants as the Texans did an excellent job rushing the pocket on most passing downs.
Week 9 - Flacco did nothing to convince the fanbase that he is worthy of a big contract extension. Flacco was very inconsistent and didn't show an ability to hit difficult passes. Most of his yardage came on easier throws as the offense was primarily focused on Ray Rice. After Brandon Weeden threw an interception to Cary Williams, Flacco nearly replied by overshooting a comeback route to Torrey Smith. Flacco was fortunate that Joe Haden couldn't make the athletic catch. He should have been intercepted for a second time soon after when he overthrew Jacoby Jones deep. Another drop from Usama Young let Flacco off the hook. Flacco did have the game deciding touchdown pass late on, but that was largely the result of good work from Torrey Smith when he used his speed to convert a simple curl route into a touchdown in the corner of the endzone.
Week 10 - Like a box of chocolates, you never known what you will get from Flacco. This week in a favorable matchup and at home, Flacco performed well. He was confident in his throws, saw limited pressure in the pocket, and was bold in his decisions to throw down the field. The Ravens benefited from multiple turnovers and two special teams touchdowns on their way to a franchise-record 55 points, but Flacco was also a highlight. In the first half, Flacco moved the ball with ease (266 yards of offense, 14 first downs) and plunged in a touchdown on a goal line sneak. Flacco beat the blitz multiple times on third-and-long with accurate throws to Boldin, Pitta, and Dickson over the middle. He was persistent in his deep throws to Torrey Smith. Despite two touchdowns to Smith, there were multiple other throws down the field to the speedy receiver that just missed. Flacco also found Jacoby Jones for a long gain against single coverage. The Oakland secondary looked overmatched all day and Flacco took advantage. Despite throwing for nearly 350 yards and totaling four touchdowns, it could have been an even bigger day. This game shows the upside of the Ravens offense when they are in-sync and playing well. Considering Flacco had just three touchdowns and three interceptions over his previous four games, it was a needed bouce-back performance to open the second half of his season.
Week 11 - Coming off one of his best outings as a pro, Flacco methodically attacked the stingy Pittsburgh secondary. Flacco was patient in the pocket and did an excellent job of taking what the defense gave him. For the majority of the game, Ike Taylor shadowed Torrey Smith, taking away Flacco’s deep threat. Flacco adjusted and began focused on his intermediate throws, routinely finding Anquan Boldin working against Keenan Lewis. During the first half, Flacco completed 15 of 22 passes attempts, seven of which went to Boldin. During his team’s fourth drive, Flacco found Boldin along the right sideline for a nine-yard gain. Flacco prolonged the play by rolling out of the pocket and Boldin did a nice job by coming back to the ball. During this same drive, Flacco completed his longest pass of the game, a 30-yard touch pass to Ray Rice. Rice leaked out of the backfield and Flacco put nice touch on the pass to evade a leaping LaMarr Woodley.
During the second half, Flacco completed just five of his ten passes for 48 yards. During his team’s ninth drive, Flacco gained 37 of his 48 second half yards. Flacco showed off his impressive arm strength by finding Boldin on a deep post route for 23 yards. Three plays later, Flacco found Rice over the middle for eight yards. This drive would result in a field goal that gave Baltimore a 13-7 advantage. Given the physical nature of the game and their second half lead, Baltimore’s play calling became extremely conservative.
Overall, Flacco orchestrated a very smart game plan. He didn’t force any throws into double coverage and simply took what Pittsburgh gave him. Pittsburgh’s secondary is one of the league’s best and Flacco has to be commended for playing smart football.
Week 12 - Considering the state of the Baltimore offense in the first half, it’s borderline miraculous that he ended up with the huge stats he did. Baltimore used a lot of short passes in the first half, but almost none of it worked. He was under a lot of pressure from the San Diego front, and the Ravens ended the first half with six punts on six possessions. They failed to score a first half point, and the one time they were in scoring range, Flacco took a bad sack on third down to knock him them out of range. The four dropped passes by his receivers certainly didn’t help any, but Flacco himself just couldn’t get into the flow of the game. With the Ravens trailing 13-3 late in the fourth quarter, Flacco suddenly found the rhythm that had been missing the entire game. He showed perfect touch on a big gain down the seam to Jacoby Jones midway through the quarter. Flacco then completed several passes in a row with the Charger defense appearing to let up just a bit. He finally was able to find TE Dennis Pitta in the back of the end zone for the score to cap a nine play, 80-yard drive. Upon San Diego failing to run out the remainder of the clock, Flacco and the Ravens got it back with 3:09 remaining. He moved the Ravens 40 yards in 13 plays, including one of the more amazing fourth down conversions you’ll ever see. Under pressure on third down and 20, he had the ball stripped away but managed to recover to set up 4th and 29. He threw a short dump-off to RB Ray Rice, who somehow maneuvered his way around the defense downfield and pick up 29 yards to convert and keep the Ravens alive. After the game-tying field goal sent the game to overtime, Flacco engineered what would be the game-winning field goal drive. On the drive, Flacco completed two critical third down passes to get the Ravens in position. The second conversion was a beautifully thrown ball down the right sideline to WR Torrey Smith on third down and 10 for a gain of 31. That put the ball at the San Diego 16-yard line, and four plays later the Ravens converted the game-winning field goal.
Week 13 - Flacco repeatedly missed Torrey Smith on easy throws underneath outside the numbers, before trying to hit him deep down the middle of the field. The ball was slightly underthrown as it hung in the air, Cortez Allen would have intercepted it but Smith knocked the ball from his grasp unknowingly. Flacco was then picked halfway through the second quarter when he spun away from Brett Keisel in the pocket, before floating a pass down the right sideline into the chest of Ryan Clark. Flacco threw the ball with no real decisiveness, it appeared that he could have been just throwing the ball away, as he completely overthrew Dennis Pitta to a spot where there were no Ravens, but he didn't put the ball safely out of bounds. A quick interception thrown from Antonio Brown gave Flacco a chance to make up for his mistake, and he took the opportunity. Flacco took advantage of Cortez Allen's inexperience by thrown a perfect backshoulder pass to Anquan Boldin, before then throwing the ball behind Allen for the first touchdown of the game. In the third quarter, Flacco threw a perfect pass deep down the left sideline to Torrey Smith, but his receiver dropped the ball in the endzone. In the fourth quarter, Flacco committed another crucial turnover when he failed to protect the ball after hanging in the pocket. Flacco held the ball out too long and James Harrison punched it out from behind, deep in Ravens' territory. Flacco was outplayed by Charlie Batch in this game, which says an awful lot about a player looking for a franchise quarterback level contract extension.
Week 14 - Baltimore’s offense was a tale of two Flaccos against the Redskins, with the Delaware product at the controls for three first-half scoring drives – out of five offensive possessions – and two turnovers out of six offensive possessions in the second half. Flacco completed a sterling sixteen of his twenty-one pass attempts against Washington’s paper mache pass defense, including three first-half touchdown passes. Flacco performed best when hooking up with wide receiver Anquan Boldin, with the two responsible for seventy-eight yards through the air and two scores. On his two touchdown passes to Boldin, Flacco put two gorgeous throws right into Boldin’s waiting hands. Each time, Boldin caught the ball without breaking stride. Flacco also had all day to find tight end Dennis Pitta on a fourteen-yard touchdown pass, with the Ravens offensive line keeping the sloth-like Redskins pass rush at bay. Flacco’s three first half-touchdown passes helped the Ravens lead the Redskins by seven at the end of the first half. That was Joe Flacco in the first half. Joe Flacco in the second half was a bit less successful. On a checkdown pass to Ray Rice, Flacco’s ball got tipped and intercepted in the red zone by venerable Redskins linebacker London Fletcher. On the Ravens’ prior offensive possession, Flacco lost all awareness in the pocket and found himself stripped of the ball by linebacker Rob Jackson. Despite a docile – nay, nonexistent – Redskins pass rush, Flacco often checked the ball down to his running backs or tight end, only targeting receivers on seven of his passes by the game’s end. He seemed a bit more tentative in the pocket than he was in the first half, where he stood tall in the pocket and proved unafraid to throw deep down the field. In the fifth-year signal caller’s defense, the Ravens seemed content to run Ray Rice and Bernard Pierce in the second half, despite the Redskins mustering up a comeback at a glacial pace. Though he did lead one scoring drive in the second half, Flacco came up short in overtime after the Redskins tied the game on a Kirk Cousins’ two-point conversion run. He failed to connect with Dennis Pitta on the first play of the quarter, and then could not find an open receiver when the Ravens faced third-and-six at their own twenty-nine yard line. With the Ravens losing in overtime and Offensive Coordinator Cam Cameron being let go in the aftermath, Flacco’s performance down the stretch – as the Ravens push towards the AFC North title – hinges on how Baltimore fills its OC position.
Week 15 - Joe Flacco had an extremely ugly day marred by inaccuracy and questionable decision making. The box score shows 254 yards and 2 touchdowns, but both touchdowns came in what most would consider garbage time, and when the game mattered Flacco was simply off. Flacco fumbled on what would be his 9th fumble of the year to set the tone for the day. He was nearly sacked in his own endzone after waiting far too long for routes to develop, and perhaps most egregious of all were his large number of blatant overthrows to receivers who would have been considered open by many. The Broncos defense did manage to pressure Flacco throughout the day, but many of these overthrows came when Flacco had time and a lane to throw from. Flacco's interception was a complete game changer. Standing on the Denver 5 yard line, Flacco threw a ball without proper zip to his left to Anquan Boldin that was easily undercut by Chris Harris and taken 95 yards the other way for a pick six. This was a throw Flacco had no business making, as the cornerback was in plain view and read the route the whole way. On the good side of the stat sheet, Flacco had two touchdown passes to Dennis Pitta. The first was on a 2nd and 25 in which Pitta dove for a ball, caught it at about the 2 yard line and literally rolled into the endzone untouched with a couple defenders around him. The second touchdown, a 61 yarder, was all Pitta. Flacco threw the ball to Pitta about 5 yards downfield to Pitta, who proceeded to break four tackles while dancing near the sidelines, somehow staying inbounds and waltzing into the endzone. It was one of the highlights of the week, and frankly, was all Pitta on the play. Joe Flacco will see good days, but today certainly was not one of them.
Week 16 - Joe Flacco looked very comfortable on Sunday against the Giants and had them completely figured out early in the game. Flacco started his day off well with a short slant TD to Smith. Flacco isolated Smith on a slant pattern, saw his WR got inside leverage and dropped an easy pass accurately into the chest of Smith for the touchdown. Flacco came back to Smith again as he hit the speedy WR deep down the field with a terrific pass in stride. Flacco was unfortunate not to get credit for the touchdown pass but Smith was taken down one yard shy. Flacco got his touchdown anyway; except he leaned over the goal line for the QB sneak instead. Two occasions in this game Flacco could have been picked off by NYG due to ill advised passes but the Giants dropped both potential interceptions. Flacco made several clutch throws in big situations. Flacco made a terrific throw to Boldin on a seam route on 3rd and 18, fitting the ball in between a CB and S. Flacco also threw a perfect pass to TE Pitta down the field on the run, fitting the ball in perfectly between coverage to his TE. Flacco did have tremendous help from his team however. Flacco could afford to play very relaxed and with confidence due to the excellent pass protection he received. The Ravens could also afford to run the ball a lot which took much pressure off of the QB. His WR’s, Smith and Boldin, also made some terrific plays and the Chemistry that exists there was evident. Regardless, Flacco lead multiple scoring drives, kept his offense on course and deserves a lot of credit as the Ravens embarrassed the Giants.
Week 17 - Because the Ravens had already clinched the division, Flacco only played the first two drives of the game. On the first drive, Flacco was able to make an accurate throw on a medium length post route to Jacoby Jones. Flacco also completed a few short routes, for decent gains. Two of his incompletions were the result of bad overthrows.
Week 18 - Flacco had a very slow start against Indianapolis, but heated up over the final two and a half quarters to get the win, his fifth straight postseason with at least one victory. On early drives, Flacco was nearly intercepted on a third down pass that floated over the middle and had two throws to Tandon Doss into the end zone that did not turn into touchdowns. While the Colts got occasional pressure on Flacco in the pocket, he generally had plenty of time to survey the field. As the second quarter progressed, he began to take full advantage. The Ravens scored in a two-minute situation in the first half to grab a 10-3 lead. Flacco’s main contribution of the drive was hitting Jacoby Jones on a third down slant as Ray Rice did the heaving lifting with a long gain on a screen pass. In the second half, Flacco made a noticeable effort to push the ball down the field in the passing game. On a third-and-19 play early in the third quarter, Flacco hoisted up a hail mary-like attempt down the field to Anquan Boldin. They made the connection despite defensive pass interference on the play. Flacco found Boldin down the field consistently in the second half, including one called back by an offensive pass interference penalty. Tandon Doss could not corral another Flacco attempt on a deep pass, which would have setup a field goal attempt in the third quarter. Flacco and Boldin again connected to essentially ice the game late with another jump ball in the end zone. Boldin outmuscled the defensive back for the pass in single coverage. Flacco needed just 23 attempts to get nearly 300 yards on the day. After being one play away from a huge win against New England and Tom Brady in the postseason last year, Flacco heads to Denver next week for a big showdown with Peyton Manning.
Week 19 - After coming to life in the second half against Indianapolis in the Wild Card round last week, Flacco continued his big plays against Denver. He showed no fear attacking the Denver secondary, including Champ Bailey, down the field. While he hit Torrey Smith twice for long touchdowns, more plays were there for the taking. The pair just missing another long gain as Smith could not get his feet in-bounds and Flacco missed Smith on two other occasions. Flacco was inconsistent on the day, but with his boldness to go deep, he needed just 18 completions to throw for over 330 yards. Denver’s pass rush was not a significant factor in the game, which enabled Flacco to push the ball down the field. Flacco did hamper Baltimore’s chances in the second half by fumbling away a snap on the opening possession of the third quarter and missing Anquan Boldin on a routine slant route to force a punt in the early fourth quarter. With under a minute to go in regulation, it was a classic clutch quarterback moment that presented itself: down seven points with the length of the field to go and little time on the clock. Flacco wasted little time and found Jacoby Jones deep for the tying touchdown. He left a full 30 seconds on the clock in fact. Flacco actually underthrew the pass to Jones, but the safety was so late to rotate in coverage that Jones still had room to make the catch and scamper down the sideline. In overtime, Flacco nearly ended the game with an errant throw he floated down the sidelines, a possible interception. He rebounded to convert a third-and-long with a stick throw to Dennis Pitta down the seam. After the impressive road victory, Flacco gets a chance at redemption next week as the Ravens travel to New England with a Super Bowl berth on the line. While 2012 was more of the same from Joe Flacco from a fantasy perspective, Torrey Smith continued to develop as a prominent target. Anquan Boldin looked fresh at the end of the season, a promising sign that he remains relevant next season. Dennis Pitta was a welcomed surprise as a pass-catching tight end. The pieces are in place for Flacco to have his best season yet in 2013.
Week 20 - The Ravens called a conservative offense in the first half as very few of Flacco's passes went deep down the field. He only completed one deep pass to Torrey Smith, a 25-yard deep crossing route between two defenders. Outside of that, his only completions were short passes to his running backs and tight ends. Flacco did find his tight ends twice down the field, however the wind appeared to cause Ed Dickson and Dennis Pitta to misjudge the football at the last second for two drops. The Ravens changed their approach on the second drive of the second half, as they put the ball in Flacco's hands. Flacco marched his team down the field with good decisions and accurate throws. He moved them into position at the goalline, before Dennis Pitta lost Steve Gregory with an excellent route for an easy touchdown. Flacco made less plays on his next drive, because the running game featured more prominently, but he did throw another touchdown pass. This time he made an excellent read when Anquan Boldin was matched up with Devin McCourty running a crossing route. The Ravens' offensive line picked up the blitz, so Flacco was able to just loft the ball into the air for Boldin to catch. It wasn't a fancy, or even difficult, pass but it was certainly an intelligent one from a quarterback who understood his receiver's strengths. After a Stevan Ridley fumble, the Patriots took over at midfield. Flacco hit Torrey Smith for a big gain, before a short pass to Jacoby Jones and an easy touchdown down the seam to Boldin. Flacco also took off for a first down scramble and 10+ yards. He was locked in at this point.