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ESPN Magazine feature on Flacco

 
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BaltimoreTerp


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PostPosted: Fri Aug 23, 2013 2:18 pm    Post subject: ESPN Magazine feature on Flacco Reply with quote

http://espn.go.com/nfl/story/_/id/9564047/baltimore-ravens-qb-joe-flacco-anything-average-espn-magazine?src=mobile

Pretty great read all-around. Definitely something to read if you're ready to get even more fired up about real football being around the corner.

The quotes about Ray really cracked me up. One of my favorite things about Joe is just how fundamentally normal he is. He just seems like a normal guy with a dry, sarcastic sense of humor who happens to be extraordinary at throwing a football.

"Boring" is another word for it but I appreciate someone who's willing to say that sometimes it's about cutting through the rah-rah BS and just doing your job. The quote where he compares his own approach as a teammate to someone like Peyton Manning was also illuminating - you can tell he's a lot more comfortable in his skin now after winning that Super Bowl.

Even though this was primarily an article about Flacco, I thought it also offered some insight into the transformation of John Harbaugh as a head coach. Coming from the Andy Reid coaching tree, he used to be a particularly risk-averse coach. And coming into a football culture as "blue collar," old-fashioned and heavily entrenched as the Ravens' identity, it's easy to see how that was a mode and way of thinking that was easy to operate with the Ravens. As a young head coach making the jump from being a position coach, it was easy for him to play a bit deferential and allow a mentor of his in Cam Cameron operate the offense in a conservative manner.

But over time, and I think the previous two playoff losses in Pittsburgh and New England were particularly influential in spurring his evolution, Harbaugh has definitely grown up as a head coach and taken on a more proactive , aggressive, and confident approach as a head coach. The way he went into the locker room in New England and told the team they were going to put the ball in Joe's hands and go win the game, the fake-FG in the Super Bowl, his directive to Dean Pees to call an all-out zero blitz during the pivotal goalline stand in the Super Bowl... These are marks of a changed man, a guy who decided he was going to be the kind of coach who went out and won football games without leaving anything on the table. He graduated from being another Marty Schottenheimer or Andy Reid to being an alpha dog, a coach with a championship mentality. Flacco and Harbaugh's relationship has always been fascinating and it's been great to see the ways in which they challenge each other and bring out the best in one another. Both of them have grown up a lot in their time in Baltimore, from guys mocked as being caretakers to being strong leaders and the faces of the franchise, having both evolved while continuing to do things their own way.
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Mancunian Raven


Joined: 09 Oct 2012
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PostPosted: Fri Aug 23, 2013 3:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

This is a really great article. It still seems like a rarity for anyone to praise Joe Flacco like this. And to say, 'yeah, he's a low key, apparently dull guy, but that's okay'.

People like to talk about Baltimore and its team as "blue collar", so I don't know how they could complain that their QB is about as blue collar as it gets. Come to work, do your job and shut up, try to do your very best every single day.

For what it's worth, I love Joe's personality. He's exactly the sort of guy I'd be friends with in real life. Laid back, funny in a dry, deadpan way. He just seems so collected and sure of himself, which, if you ask me, is a great quality for your QB to have. I'd rather him be like that than be like Cutler or Rivers, whining at his teammates and shoving people on the sidelines.

Sadly, some people are trying to spin his comments about Ray Lewis's pre-game talks as though he's criticising Ray. Which is a shame, but I'm sure Ray knows what he meant, and that's all that matters.

I like the insights into the Ravens' coaching dynamics, and the acknowledgement of the growing belief in Joe, that they were all behind him, and all just as frustrated as he was that he wasn't being given the freedom to go and do his thing.

That stuff about Harbs telling the defense that he was going to let Joe go to work in the second half of the AFC Championship Game sounds like something out of a football movie, but you do get the sense that this is pretty much what happened. You could feel the way that game shifted, the way that team shifted, the belief that flooded into everyone when Joe started slinging the ball about in the second half.
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sp6488


Joined: 14 Mar 2005
Posts: 9113
Location: MD
PostPosted: Fri Aug 23, 2013 4:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Mancunian Raven wrote:
This is a really great article. It still seems like a rarity for anyone to praise Joe Flacco like this. And to say, 'yeah, he's a low key, apparently dull guy, but that's okay'.

People like to talk about Baltimore and its team as "blue collar", so I don't know how they could complain that their QB is about as blue collar as it gets. Come to work, do your job and shut up, try to do your very best every single day.

For what it's worth, I love Joe's personality. He's exactly the sort of guy I'd be friends with in real life. Laid back, funny in a dry, deadpan way. He just seems so collected and sure of himself, which, if you ask me, is a great quality for your QB to have. I'd rather him be like that than be like Cutler or Rivers, whining at his teammates and shoving people on the sidelines.

Sadly, some people are trying to spin his comments about Ray Lewis's pre-game talks as though he's criticising Ray. Which is a shame, but I'm sure Ray knows what he meant, and that's all that matters.

I like the insights into the Ravens' coaching dynamics, and the acknowledgement of the growing belief in Joe, that they were all behind him, and all just as frustrated as he was that he wasn't being given the freedom to go and do his thing.

That stuff about Harbs telling the defense that he was going to let Joe go to work in the second half of the AFC Championship Game sounds like something out of a football movie, but you do get the sense that this is pretty much what happened. You could feel the way that game shifted, the way that team shifted, the belief that flooded into everyone when Joe started slinging the ball about in the second half.


More than anything, I think Ray knows that he can be a bit over the top and laugh about it. I remember in the original Hard Knocks the rookies were doing skits. One rookie who never made the team was doing this very over the top Ray Lewis impression (Any Dogs in the House!?!?!) and dance (a lot of WOOOOs thrown in there). The camera moves over to Ray surrounded by Shannon Sharpe, Rod Woodson, and the other vets. Noone was laughing harder than Ray.
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