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Joe Flacco: Elite, or Not Elite?

In 2008, the Baltimore Ravens drafted a quarterback  with the 18th overall pick. Joe has given Baltimore fans what we longed for at the quarterback position for years, someone that’s dependable, “cool,” and can make tough throws. Before Flacco’s tenure, Baltimore had more than 8 starting quarterbacks since the franchise’s inception in 1996. Flacco’s inconsistency in the regular season, coupled with his stellar playoff performance has often prompted the question: Is he elite, or not elite?

Most NFL analysts don’t list him in their top 5 quarterbacks. Sometimes even falling to 15 or 16 in their rankings. Here are some notable stats and recognitions Flacco has earned in his 7 seasons with the Baltimore Ravens.

Joe Flacco MVP

Bleacher Report

10 Notable Flacco Stats from www.baltimoreravens.com

1.) Led the Ravens to playoff berths in 6 out of 7 seasons.

2.) Flacco led the Ravens to back to back AFC Championship games in 2010 and 2011.

3.) Flacco’s 71 wins (including playoff games) since coming into the league in 2008 is the most of active quarterbacks.

4.) Tied Joe Montana’s record of 11 touchdown passes with 0 interceptions in Baltimore’s 2012 Super Bowl run.

5.) Became the first rookie QB in NFL history to win two playoff games in the 2008 Divisional Playoff win at Ten. (1/10/09)

6.) Flacco has led the Ravens to 39 career regular season wins at home, the most among NFL starting QBs since 2008

7.) From 2009-12, Flacco and Aaron Rodgers were the only NFL quarterbacks to throw for at least 3,600 yards and 20 TDs while posting 12 INTs or less

8.) Flacco was named the MVP of Super Bowl XLVII

9.) Flacco’s 62 regular season victories are the most by a starting QB in the first six seasons of a career.

10.) Joe Flacco re-signed (six-year contract) with the Ravens on 3/4/13 worth over 120 million dollars.

If you had no idea who Joe Flacco was, and you read those stats, you might think he’s an elite quarterback. Today, I had it made clear that while as a Raven’s fan I complain about the inconsistency in our offense at times and Joe not living up to his huge contract during the regular season, that there are other fans out there just yearning for their team to make the playoffs or have a good season. As Ravens’ fans we have been spoiled by season after season of exceptional football. The 2014 is no exception, as the Ravens steamrolled the Steelers in a 30-17 victory in Saturday night’s Wild Card playoff game, where Flacco threw for 259 yards, 2 TD’s and boasted a passer rating of 114.

I have seen the error of my ways in complaining about Joe. That’s because in our world of wins and losses, when you mention the NFL’s top-tier quarterbacks, you have to include his name in that elite category. Chances are he’s either broken or tied your record. According to Stats LLC, Flacco has more Road playoff victories than any other quarterback since 2008.

Flacco Road wins

To answer my own question, Elite, or Not Elite? Stats don’t lie. He’s elite in my book. Playoff time, is Flacco time.

 

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