The Baltimore Ravens only won four out of the nine games that Joe Flacco started this season. They won each of the past three games started by rookie Lamar Jackson, who was given that opportunity to start only because Flacco suffered a hip injury that has sidelined him for the past month.
That gives Ravens Head Coach John Harbaugh a big decision to make in the near future, perhaps as early as this week, as to who is going to be the team’s starting quarterback for the remainder of the season. While Jackson hasn’t necessarily been dominating as a pocket passer, his threat to run makes the offense as a whole more threatening, and has boosted the overall rushing attack.
Harbaugh made it quite clear that the decision will be his when the team comes to determine who is going to start once Flacco is healthy. He said that the plan is to ramp things way up for Flacco this week in practice to determine if he can go after returning to practice in just a limited capacity last week.
“He’s cleared to practice, so he’ll practice”, the head coach said. The team doctors will “probably look at what he does in practice. They look at the tape and they’ll just let me know. We expect to ramp him up in practice a lot more this week, since last week was his first week”.
Dating back to the 2013 season, the Ravens have a 42-41 record in the games that Flacco has started. He has completed 62.6 percent of his passes in those games for 20612 yards with 110 touchdowns and 80 interceptions, averaging 6.5 yards per pass attempt, throwing under 250 yards per game, and posting a passer rating of just 82.3.
And he was the Super Bowl MVP in the last game that he played before that.
While the Ravens are feeling pretty good about themselves over the past three games, whoever has to start in the next one should be prepared to be overmatched, because their next opponent is the Kansas City Chiefs, who boast one of the best offenses in the league. While Patrick Mahomes has become more prone to interceptions as the season as worn on, they are still a deadly passing attack.
Mahomes leads the league with 35 touchdown passes this season, with 10 in just the past two games. He has thrown six touchdowns in a game twice this year already, and has at least four in a game seven times.
The Ravens, however, have one of the top passing defenses in the league, allowing the second-fewest total passing yards, the fewest yards per attempt, and the third-fewest touchdowns, ranking first in points allowed overall. But they also have just five interceptions on the season.