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Flacco's passing sparks offense


Flacco's passing sparks offense

Theres no question that the Ravens are relying much more on the passing game this season, and the strong performance of quarterback Joe Flacco has been a big reason for its success.
Flacco made a number of key plays in Thursdays 23-16 victory over the Browns. He completed 28 of 46 passes for 356 yards. He threw for one touchdown and kept the Ravens moving throughout much of the game as Baltimore improved to 3-1 this season.
Flacco threw one interception, which came in the end zone in the first half. That play ended a streak of 125 consecutive red zone passes without an interception. The last one came back on Dec. 7, 2009 in Green Bay. But Flacco didnt let that bother him.
Its just one of those things, Flacco said. It happens. You have to shake it off, and a lot of time was left in the game. You cant let it affect you too much.
And he didnt. Flacco kept the offense rolling throughout as the Ravens again relied heavily on the air attack. They passed the ball 46 times and ran on 27 plays and took what the Browns gave him -- which wasn't always easy to do.
I think we tried to run the ball a little bit early, and they did a good job coming after us and kind of stopping us for a yard here and a yard there, no gain, Flacco said. I think we were able to get some quick game going, and that was really what was hitting them. Theyre a good defense. Its tough to just get out there and take chunks of yards at a time. You have to be smart about it, and thats just the way the game played out today.
The Browns made it tough for Flacco at times. They stacked the box and often had good coverage that forced the quarterback to fit some balls into very small spaces, several times in between a number of Cleveland players.
Anquan Boldin finished with nine catches for 131 yards. Ray Rice added eight catches for 47 yards, and Torrey Smith caught six passes for 97 yards and one touchdown to spark the offense.
I thought the guys did a good job of making catches for him, Ravens coach John Harbaugh said. Joe was throwing the ball into tight spots with tremendous accuracy.
The Browns got some pressure on Flacco, sacking him four times. But when Flacco got some time to throw, he often found open receivers, and that proved crucial to the Baltimore offense.
Flacco is comfortable in the pocket, slinging the ball down the field and making some big plays, said Browns defensive tackle Ahtyba Rubin. Next time, we have to make sure that we get to him and put him on the ground.

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Ravens' Eric DCosta not ruling out taking a quarterback at No. 16

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Ravens' Eric DCosta not ruling out taking a quarterback at No. 16

And with the No. 16 overall pick in the 2018 NFL Draft, the Baltimore Ravens select.... a quarterback?

Assistant general manager, and soon to be general manager, Eric DeCosta isn't ruling out the possibility that the Ravens use their first-round pick on drafting a quarterback to eventually replace Joe Flacco. 

"I feel like if there is a guy there that we think is really too good to pass up, we're going to take him," DeCosta told the team's website on the chance of draft a quarterback in the first-round. 

Quarterback is just one of many offensive needs for the team. Joe Flacco's stats have been trending downward as the 33-year old is entering his 11th season.


Owner Steve Bisciotti though may disagree with DeCosta.

At his annual State of the Ravens press conference, Bisciotti said, "That’s not really something that we’re worried about right now. We’ve got bigger fish to fry, I guess. I don’t consider that a big worry," in regards to looking at life after Joe. Bisciotti also noted the team would be looking at all options in free agency and the draft for weapons for their QB.

From the sound of that, it appears the team's first choice would be a wideout, but the Ravens haven't drafted a quarterback since Joe Flacco back in 2008. 

The 2018 NFL Draft class has a handful of strong quarterbacks to choose from and not a ton of first-round wide receivers. 

Former Ravens scout, Daniel Jeremiah of NFL.com has predicted the team with take Oklahoma's Baker Mayfield in the first-round. 

"It basically depends on our evaluation and how we feel about the guy, what we think he can become as a player and what we think his upside is and if he's there," DeCosta said

Backup Ryan Mallet is a free agent so the organization will have to find someone to fill the role, whether it's someone on a one year-deal, or the future QB of the franchise. 


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Ravens sign Michael Crabtree to three-year deal

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Ravens sign Michael Crabtree to three-year deal

The Baltimore Ravens have signed wide receiver Michael Crabtree to a three-year deal on Friday according to general manager and executive vice president Ozzie Newsome.

The deal is apparently worth $21 million, according to Adam Schefter.

After being released by the Raiders on Thursday following the signing of Jordy Nelson, Crabtree heads to the Ravens less than 24 hours later.


The 31-year-old is coming off a 2017 season when he recorded 58 receptions for 618 yards and eight touchdowns. In 2016 he posted 89 receptions for 1,003 yards and eight touchdowns.

Since 2015, the Texas Tech product has scored 25 receiving touchdowns, the fifth-most in the NFL. Crabtree and Steelers wide receiver Antonio Brown are the only NFL players to post at least eight touchdown catches in each of the past three seasons.


In all, Crabtree has played nine NFL seasons – six of them with San Francisco (2009-14) and three with Oakland (2015-17). The former first-round draft pick (10th overall, Texas Tech) has registered 579 receptions for 6,870 yards (11.9 avg.) and 51 touchdowns in 125 career games (122 starts).

“Michael has played very well against the Ravens, so we know firsthand the attributes he brings to the game,” Newsome said in a team statement. “He is a smart, tough, physical receiver who battles for the ball. We like his temperament and believe he is a good fit for our football team, on and off the field.”

Since he entered the NFL in 2009, Crabtree’s 51 receiving scores rank 10th among active wide receivers, while his receptions (579) are seventh, and his receiving yards (6,870) are 12th.