Flacco’s “elite” mind is taking him — and the Ravens — to New Orleans

January 23, 2013 | Drew Forrester

Someone once asked PGA Tour player and widely-recognized-as-the-best-putter-on-the-planet Brad Faxon how he makes so many putts. “Because I’m never afraid to miss,” he said.

Joe Flacco’s demeanor has been questioned by the great unwashed over his five years in Baltimore.

“He needs to show more emotion.”

“It really pisses me off that he doesn’t get angry after losses.”

“It sure would be nice to see him throw his helmet after an interception or a stalled drive.”

“I can’t stand his flat-line way of talking.  He sounds like he’s on some sort of sedative.”

We should all give thanks that Flacco never listened to any of that stuff.

He’s “perfectly fine” the way he is, thank you.

In the aftermath of the 34-17 hammering at the hands of Denver on December 16, Flacco was in the crosshairs because of a late second-quarter gaffe that completely changed the game.  You know what happened — with the Ravens driving for a score that would have cut the deficit to 10-7, Flacco threw a ball into the corner that was snared by Broncos’ cornerback Chris Harris and returned for a touchdown that essentially put the game away for the visitors.

Afterwards, John Harbaugh spoke first to the media and admitted, yes, that mistake was very costly to his team.  It wasn’t a “throwing-under-the-bus-moment” because everyone in the stadium knew it was a game-changer, but it was still a rarity for the head coach to pull out a single play from a game and point to it so openly in his post-game remarks.

I was in the room when that happened, as was Flacco, who was standing near the door waiting to take his turn with the media.  I looked at Joe when Harbaugh said those words and nothing changed in his face.  He didn’t move a muscle.  There was no lowering of the head.  No audible sigh.  Not a wince.  Nothing.  He just stood there and took it in.  Moments later, Flacco moved to the podium and the first question, naturally, centered on the interception at the end of the first half.

“Sometimes those things happen,” he said.

Sometimes. Those. Things. Happen.

He went on to explain, sensibly of course, that he was the last person in the world who wanted to throw a pick at that moment.

“It’s not like I was trying to do that, there,” he stated.  “I made a bad choice and we paid for it.  But we’ll move on from here and get that stuff corrected and get ready for the Giants next week.”

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6 Comments For This Post

  1. Steve from Sandpoint Says:

    When it comes to Joe Flacco I don’t care much for people who blow there own horn before they win the big prize. Win the Super Bowl and I will help blow your horn. As far as kicking everyone’s ass with quality content and a full service media, Drew don’t go blowing your horn just yet. There are a lot of issues I have with wnst.net that you and Nestor won’t respond to. So, elite I don’t think so. (DF: If you think anyone else in the market is better at sports radio and sports “coverage” than us, point them out, please. Right…I didn’t think you could. Thanks.)

  2. Jason Manelli Says:

    Wow Drew – I never thought about it this way but I think you are absolutely right! Our minds are what have elevated us to be the dominant species on the planet, and I agree that it is a winning mindset that separates the elite athletes.

  3. The Armchair QB Says:

    My support for Joe Flacco has never wavered as his body of work speaks for itself and certainly needs no defending. The Ravens would never have gotten to the playoffs for 5 straight years without him. As for descriptive words like “elite” and “great”, those are strictly for the pndits. Simply stated, the word that best desribes him is…..WINNER! Joe Flacco is one Raven who has made his critics eat…..CROW!!

  4. Steve from Sandpoint Says:

    It’s all in the EAR of the beholder.

  5. matt Says:

    you still have a week and a half. better save some of the good stuff

  6. Justafan Says:

    Neither Peyton Manning nor Tom Brady performed like “elite ” quarterbacks during the past two weeks. There were times when John Unitas did not perform like an “elite” quarterback either. I can remember the times when Unitas had one of his infrequent bad games, a loud chorus of boos would be heard all over Memorial Stadium, and chants of ” We want Couzzo” would ring out. The truth of the matter is that Joe Flacco can compete favorably with any quarterback in the NFL.

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