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Steelers game gives Joe Flacco chance to silence crowd, critics

Steelers game gives Joe Flacco chance to silence crowd, critics

This has not been Joe Flacco’s best season. However, that will hardly matter if the Ravens’ quarterback has a vintage performance Sunday against the Steelers.

Big games often bring out Flacco’s best. And to characterize the Ravens-Steelers matchup on Christmas as a big game would be an understatement, according to Steelers coach Mike Tomlin.

“One game for the (AFC) North title,” Tomlin said during a conference call.  “If you can’t get up for that, then you’re a dead man.”

The Ravens are very much alive, needing road victories over the Steelers and Bengals (Week 17) to win the division. Is this when Flacco comes alive, like during the 2012 playoff run when he led the Ravens to a Super Bowl title?

Don’t rule it out. Flacco plays for games like this.

“When you dream of being in the NFL, you dream of going into hostile environments in high-pressure situations, where a lot is on the line, and people are into it,” Flacco said. “You do not dream of playing in front of 10 people, like you do in high school for some of us. You picture playing in front of 70,000 people that hate you. That is what makes it fun.

“I have played there (Pittsburgh) a lot. It’s not about being comfortable there, or not being comfortable. It is a big game in a high-pressure situation. They don’t like us, and that is what it is all about.”

Flacco has a 5-6 lifetime record at Heinz Field but has won his last two starts there, including a 2014 playoff game. However, comng off major knee surgery, Flacco has thrown 13 interceptions this season, the second-most of his career, and he has a quarterback rating of just 84.8. Pro Football Focus ranks Flacco as just the 23rd best starting quarterback this season heading into Sunday’s game.  

Does Flacco care about any of that? No. Does he sound ready for Sunday? You bet. Flacco knows the Ravens need him to play well, or there will be no playoffs for them this season.

“It going to be a lot of fun,” Flacco said. “We can enjoy Christmas that night on the plane ride home. I think people are going to be sitting at home on Christmas, loving the fact they get to watch Ravens-Steelers.”

And Flacco will love trying to silence the crowd.

MORE RAVENS: Steve Smith Sr. dresses up again, now in the holiday spirit

 

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Baltimore Ravens Roundup: Roster is set heading into start of OTAs

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Baltimore Ravens Roundup: Roster is set heading into start of OTAs

Kick off your Monday with the latest Baltimore Ravens news including the full 90-man roster heading into the beginning of OTAs.

Player/Team Notes: 

1. The Baltimore Ravens have officially announced the full 90-man roster that will be competing for an official team roster spot in OTAs this summer. Ravens OTAs begin Monday.

2. With the return of Pernell McPhee and the addition of Shane Ray, it's clear that the Ravens are searching for the right pass rushers for their defense. The two veterans join draft pick Jaylon Ferguson in the quest to create a dynamic defense.

3. Marquise Brown is expected to miss OTAs due to continued rehab on his foot from Lisfranc surgery. However, Brown is expected to be ready by the start of training camp in August.

Looking Ahead:

July 15: 4 p.m. deadline to get a long-term deal done with designated franchise tag players.

The 2019 NFL schedule is set! See the Baltimore Ravens defend the AFC North at M&T Bank Stadium this season. Get your tickets now at www.BaltimoreRavens.com/tickets.

Credit: Rotoworld and Baltimore Ravens for news points.

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Baltimore Ravens Roundup: Marquise Brown to miss OTAs

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Baltimore Ravens Roundup: Marquise Brown to miss OTAs

Kick off your Saturday with the latest Baltimore Ravens news including an injury update on the Ravens' first-round pick. 

Player/Team Notes: 

1. 2019 first-round pick and WR Marquise Brown will miss OTAs as he continues to recover from Lisfranc surgery. Per Jeff Zrebiec of The Athletic, the team expects Brown to be ready by the start of training camp. 

2. The Ravens confirmed the signings of OLB Pernell McPhee, OLB Shane Ray, and WR Michael Floyd Friday. Baltimore also announced it had waived QB Jalan McClendon and DT Kalil Morris.

3. Free agent LB Jon Bostic worked out for the Ravens Friday, per Zrebiec. Bostic was cut by the Steelers in April. 

Looking Ahead:

July 15: 4 p.m. deadline to get a long-term deal done with designated franchise tag players.

The 2019 NFL schedule is set! See the Baltimore Ravens defend the AFC North at M&T Bank Stadium this season. Get your tickets now at www.BaltimoreRavens.com/tickets.

Credit: Rotoworld and Baltimore Ravens for news points.

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