OWINGS MILLS, Md. — Baltimore Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco has drawn criticism from an unlikely place for his less-than-enthusiastic approach to lining up at wide receiver for the times when Lamar Jackson comes in at quarterback.
“My wife gave me crap the one day, told me I need to look more interested out there,” Flacco said Wednesday. “But I’m just trying to stay out of it. I’m not comfortable out there. I don’t need to get too creative.”
“… I’m just trying to stay out of it. I’m not comfortable out there. I don’t need to get too creative.”
Joe Flacco, on lining up at WR
Flacco has said that he supports any plays that help the offense gain yards, which is a more diplomatic stance than previous years. In 2013, Flacco ripped the use of the Wildcat offense with then-backup quarterback Tyrod Taylor, calling it a “high school offense.”
This year, defenses usually put one defender on Flacco, but the Super Bowl-winning quarterback acknowledged he isn’t doing much to trick teams.
“You can see me. I’m out there just standing,” Flacco said. “I really just try to stay out of the way of everything. That’s what I’m told to do. That’s what I’m doing.”
The last time Flacco played wide receiver on a regular basis was in middle school, when he first played football. Flacco has two career catches in the NFL, including one that went for 43 yards against Oakland in his 2008 rookie season.
Asked if there is any scenario in which he will catch a pass this season, Flacco said with a laugh, “I sure hope not.”
If defenses don’t cover Flacco, coach John Harbaugh said the Ravens will throw a pass to the 11-year quarterback. The Ravens players believe that could happen.
“He’s just luring defenses to sleep,” running back Alex Collins said. “He said he was afraid earlier but he might be catching some passes if they’re not paying attention to him. That’s a good thing. Let him keep tricking them over there.”