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Five ramifications of Joe Flacco's season-ending injury

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Five ramifications of Joe Flacco's season-ending injury

BALTIMORE – The Ravens won a game Sunday, but lost starting quarterback Joe Flacco for the season with a serious knee injury. Here are five fast takeaways from the stunning development:

1) The timetable for Flacco’s full recovery is uncertain. 

It was a surreal locker room scene, with Flacco surrounded by reporters, dealing with something he had never dealt with before.

“I don’t think it’s totally set in yet, but it’s the nature of the game man, “ Flacco said. ‘I’ve been really fortunate. I’m really proud of the fact that I was able to go that long. I wanted to do that long without missing anything. “

This season is over for Flacco. His main goal will be to recover as quickly as he can after surgery. Does that mean he returns by Week 1 next season? Nobody could be certain after the game, including Flacco, who suspected he tore both his ACL and MCL. 

“I have no idea at this point,”Flacco said in the locker room Sunday. “We haven’t taken any pictures yet.”

Surgery, followed by months of rehabilitation, are ahead for Flacco. But have no doubt he will attack the process head on.

“You have to just stay tall and be tough about it,” Flacco said. “That’s all you can do. I think that’s the way I am about everything in my life, and I’m not going to be any different this time.”

MORE RAVENS: 5 THINGS TO KNOW ABOUT BALTIMORE'S LAST-SECOND WIN

2) Matt Schaub will get his chance to showcase himself to the NFL.

Plenty of teams need a quarterback. Schaub will be a free agent after the season. If he plays well, his phone will ring, and he’ll have options, either with the Ravens or elsewhere.

3) Flacco has spoiled Ravens’ fans with his durability and toughness

Flacco has never missed a game since entering the NFL in 2008. On Sunday, he stayed in the game for three plays after injuring his knee, because he wanted to finish the game-winning drive. 

“I don’t know if that was the best thing, but it’s just a reaction,” Flacco said. 

That reaction speaks volumes about why Flacco gets so much respect from teammates and coaches. When evaluating Flacco as a quarterback, his toughness should never be taken for granted.

4) Not having Flacco will force offensive coordinator Marc Trestman to make adjustments

Schaub can’t make all the throws that Flacco can make. That will impact Trestman’s play calling. They’ll be spending plenty of extra time together.

5) The Ravens play the final six games without their three top offensive players.

Flacco, Steve Smith, and Forsett are all done for the year. Points and victories will be even harder to come by. The Ravens have shown they will continue to play hard. But at 3-7, without so many key weapons, they will be underdogs in most, if not all of their remaining games.

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Baltimore Ravens select QB Lamar Jackson with the 32nd overall pick in the 2018 NFL Draft

Baltimore Ravens select QB Lamar Jackson with the 32nd overall pick in the 2018 NFL Draft

Ozzie Newsome is closing out his last NFL Draft as the general manager of the Ravens with a bang.

After trading down twice from the 16th spot to draft TE Hayden Hurst with the 25th overall pick, the Eagles traded their 32nd overall pick to the Ravens where they selected QB Lamar Jackson. In return, the Eagles will receive the Ravens' 2018 2nd-round and 4th-round picks in addition to their 2019 2nd-round pick. 

The former Heisman Trophy winner has proven success in the air and on the ground. While at Louisville, Jackson had 9,043 passing yards and 69 touchdowns. He also rushed for 4,132 yards and 50 touchdowns.  

The first-round selection shows the Ravens are planning for the post-Flacco era.

Standing at 6' 2",  Jackson's build isn't up to typical NFL QB standards and scouts were concerned with his accuracy. What he does have in his favor is speed. His NFL comparison is to that of Michael Vick. 

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Baltimore Ravens select Hayden Hurst with the 25th overall pick in the 2018 NFL Draft

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Baltimore Ravens select Hayden Hurst with the 25th overall pick in the 2018 NFL Draft

The pick is in! 

With the 25th overall pick in the 2018 NFL Draft, the Ravens have selected tight end Hayden Hurst.

Hurst, an ex-minor league baseball pitcher, walked on at South Carolina at 21-years old and finished his three-year career with 100 receptions, 1,281 yards and three touchdowns. 

Standing at 6' 5", Hurst ran a 4.67 40 yard dash, recorded a 31.5 vertical jump and a 7.19 three cone drill at the combine. 

"His fearless play demeanor combined with size, strength and athleticism make him a well-rounded prospect with the versatility to line up all over the field. He's sure-handed and could become a young quarterback's safety blanket if he improves elements of his route running. He should see early snaps and has the ability to become a good combination tight end." according to his draft profile

While Hurst is starting his career at 25-years old, he will provide tight end support that the Ravens have yet to address in free agency. It also doesn't hurt that QB Joe Flacco has a tendency to favor his tight ends.

Welcome to Ravens Nation, Hurst.