Can Joe Flacco now be considered “elite”?

Joe Flacco has now been in the NFL for 5 years, has reached the playoffs each year, has won at least one playoff game every year, he has had three AFC Championship game appearances, he has won a Super Bowl, and he won a Super Bowl MVP award. In his recent post-season run he threw 11 touchdowns and zero interceptions; tying Joe Montana’s all-time NFL record, all while beating 4 of the best quarterbacks in the NFL in Andrew Luck, Peyton Manning, Tom Brady, and Colin Kaepernick.

As great as Flacco was in this playoff run, he has his downfalls, there are far too many games in the regular season where he seems to not give his best effort. For his first three seasons the Ravens defense was arguably the reason for all of Flacco’s success but these last two seasons we have witnessed a shift in power. Flacco carried the Ravens to back-to-back AFC Championship games against Tom Brady’s Patriots, and if it weren’t for a dropped touchdown pass by Lee Evans and missed 30+ yard field goal by Billy Cundiff, Flacco could have carried the Ravens to back-to-back Superbowls. At the end of the day Flacco delivered the Baltimore Ravens a second Super Bowl in the organization’s 17 year existence, and gave the legendary Ray Lewis a retirement gift that few NFL players get; the Lombardi trophy.

Would I call Flacco elite? I think you have to, every quarterback in the NFL that has a ring is considered elite: Aaron Rodgers, Tom Brady, Ben Roethlisberger, Eli Manning, Peyton Manning, Drew Brees. Now, do I think he is as good as those other 6 Super Bowl-winning quarterbacks? No I do not, but I think he is better than every other quarterback in the NFL. So, if he’s not “elite” he is the best non-elite QB in the NFL.



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