Joe Flacco’s leadership on full display early in preseason action

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Post #1 - 14.12.2018 03:02

The above sentence by WBAL’s Gerry Sandusky is everything Ravens fans could’ve hoped to hear in c[" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">][img]" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">[/img][/url]apping off the starting quarterback’s only action on Thursday night against the Los Angeles Rams. On his lone 10 play [" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">]Youth Maurice Canady Jersey[/url] , 70 yard drive, Joe Flacco looked athletic, accurate, and most importantly, comfortable.This was on full display as he stood tall in the pocket and also extended plays to keep things moving against the Rams’ second-string defense. He looked as sharp as ever in his return to action as QB1 for Baltimore. However, that’s to be expected for an 11-year vet in a tune-up effort versus a team’s depth squad. What was more impressive were the intangibles on display.The Athletic’s Jeff Zrebiec highlighted a specific interaction after the aforementioned play that points to a potential sea change in Flacco’s demeanor:Logically, no one could blame the longtime starter for shutting things down and being perfectly satisfied with the successful series the offense had just enjoyed. After all, it was a meaningless game and Flacco’s action was over for the evening.But the fact that he went the extra mile to talk things over with Crabtree after the missed end zone pass, and gave his line the necessary props is important for a guy like Joe. Why? It all ties into his somewhat complicated history with the media.Flacco continues to shrug off questions about having a different mentality this year Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY SportsDuring his 10 seasons as a starter, Flacco has become the consummate punching bag, a pi帽ata for “passion-level” watch dogs who scrutinize body language to the nth degree. His trademark expressionless sideline presence is called leadership by example when the team is winning and a lack of passion or fire when the opposite is the case.It’s a double-edged sword, really; sometimes the criticisms are warranted while other times they can be unfair drive-bys perpetrated by hot-take talk showswith nothing better to fill their air-time with. Regardless, more of what we saw on Thursday night will help Flacco to dispel them one way or the other.There’s another aspect of his leadership which has been called into question as well though. Ever since an heir to his proverbial throne was named [" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">]" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">[/url] , Flacco has taken heat for being more Cersei Lannister than Ned Stark.Lamar Jackson has been promising in practices and his few preseason appearances since arriving in Baltimore, and Flacco has received criticism for not being especially jazzed up about the presence of the rookie passer. Without getting too far into media watch dog mode, I’ll just say there have been a few too many take-downs of the incumbent starter for allegedly not cozying up to the guy who will soon be replacing him in a perfect world.Flacco has been accused of not being receptive enough to the rookie Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY SportsEither way though, the idea that he’s gone completely in the other direction is pretty overblown. Jackson himself has said that Flacco has been helpful to him in practice, and the below video shows the veteran is keeping an eye on Jackson as he progresses through the preseason:While the Ravens social media team putting this out there is obviously a savvy attempt at defusing rumors of tension between the two, Flacco spoke highly of Jackson in his postgame presser:While the situation is obvious and Flacco isn’t in a hurry to hand his job over to Lamar, this sounds like the beginning of a productive relationship between two guys who have mutual respect for each other. They’ll both continue to learn from one another, and those who would still call Flacco selfish and unwilling to help the rookie out just aren’t paying close enough attention at this point.All in the all, the arrow appears to be pointing further up than it has in a while for Flacco, and it will be interesting to see if he can keep on playing well and showcasing his personality as he has been. If he does, then the Ravens will probably be looking at a much more promising season than the last several they’ve been through. At that point, as Flacco has put it, the questions surrounding his future will answer themselves.Ravens training camp highlights & lowlights: 7/28/18 I truly try my best [" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">]James Hurst Jersey[/url] , every season, to not build the excitement of Ravens football too high. Five months without practice leaves us all excited at the notion of Joe Flacco simply picking up the pigskin. We see a completion and over-anticipate success. But this year, after this past week of practices, I cannot help myself. Too many times we’ve witnessed Joe look deep and hit his receiver in stride.Player of the Day: Joe FlaccoI don’t place Joe’s recent play-making success on Lamar Jackson’s arrival. It may have contributed, but I’m far more under the belief of Flacco having multiple starting receivers on the offense being the cause. The trio of John Brown, Willie Snead IV and Michael Crabtree are tried and true targets, and Flacco’s demonstrating first-hand he can deliver. Joe completed multiple deep shots to a handful of targets this afternoon. As fans all know, Brown has been the recipient to many of these passes throughout the entirety of camp.Though the deep shots are fun, the best event of the day came in the form of Flacco’s eight-play drive resulting in a touchdown pass to TE Nick Boyle. The Ravens utilized both the running and passing attack, finishing the series with seven more points on the board.Offense:While Flacco owned today’s practice, most offensive players also produced a successful practice. Lamar hit multiple throws, including a 40-yard deep-shot to DeVier Posey for the touchdown. Though there was wobble on the throw, a touchdown pass is a touchdown pass. Lamar also hit Willie Snead down the sideline for a 25-yard gain.Possibly the biggest cheers resulted from Joe Flacco connecting with Breshad Perriman on a deep shot. Soon as Perriman completed the catch the stands erupted with excitement and support.After a few drops in the past few days [" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">]Authentic Marlon Humphrey Jersey[/url] , Jaleel Scott answered with a touchdown catch from Joe during red-zone drills. The window for the completion was tight in double coverage but Flacco hit Scott in the chest. A slight bobble from Scott worried fans initially, but he locked the ball in his arms as he came down with the ball in the end-zone.It wasn’t a perfect practice though, as Hayden Hurst and Alex Collins dropped passes from Flacco. Both hit them in the hands in stride, but they couldn’t secure the football. For all those worried about Joe ‘not caring’, he dropped an expletive after the second drop. Yes, the big-man cares and demonstrated his frustration vocally.Josh Woodrum also suffered a rough practice as two passes were tipped. Luckily for him, both were dropped by the defenders. On his offensive drive, he did find a running lane for 20-yards after finding nobody open on his progressions. The drive ended with a completed field goal.Defense:The biggest note on defense, unfortunately, is another struggling practice from sophomore cornerback Marlon Humphrey. Over the past few days he’s been beat on multiple deep shots and in shorter routes. From my notes:5 —> 13 complete for 30 yards, 29 in coverage5 —> 15 complete for 12 yards, 29 in coverage5 —> 10 complete for 6 yards, 29 in coverageI’m unsure what’s going on with Marlon [" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">]Youth Lamar Jackson Jersey[/url] , but I’m confident he will bounce back soon. In fact, he posted on Twitter after today’s practice. Both Tony Jefferson and Eric Weddle responded to his post.The Ravens offense produced two false starts today, which looked to upset the coaching staff, but an offsides jump by Kamalei Correa was the ‘last straw’. The linebacker was instructed to go run a lap. Earlier in practice, though, KC shook a running back out of his cleats on a pass-blocking/blitz pick-up drill. I didn’t get to see who it was, though.It wasn’t all bad by any stretch for the defense, though it sounds like it. Matt Judon and rookie safety DeShon Elliott turned up the contact during red-zone drills, laying booming hits on Andre Levrone and Gus Edwards, respectively. Both offensive players stood up after the hits without issue. You can tell the Ravens defensive unit is ready to play with live ammunition. I think the entire team is, to be quite frank. The thirst for hitting, scoring and play-making is days away from being quenched.



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