As the Baltimore Ravens and San Francisco 49ers prepare to face off against each other in Super Bowl 2013, much of the media attention has fallen on Ravens linebacker Ray Lewis in his final season in the NFL and 49ers quarterback and rising star Colin Kaepernick. In comparison, not much has been said about Joe Flacco, considering the fact that he plays the most prolific position on a Super Bowl bound team. Is Flacco getting the attention he deserves?
For most football fans, Flacco is a decent, even good quarterback, but certainly not great. He does just enough to win, but not much more. Is this assessment fair?
Flacco is in his fifth season in the league and has been the Ravens’ starter for all of them. He became the unexpected starter his rookie season, when he became just the third rookie to ever win his first post-season start and the first ever to win his first two playoff games.
Since then, the Ravens have continued to make the playoffs every year with Flacco at the helm. Though he has been at times inconsistent and his numbers aren’t setting the world on fire, Flacco has found a way to lead his team efficiently and effectively to the post-season every single year; nevertheless, he is still not getting heaps of praise or attention.
In that way, he is much like New York Giants quarterback Eli Manning.
No one thought much of Manning at first either. He was simply a good, but not great quarterback until he led his team to a Super Bowl victory over the New England Patriots. After that, people began to take notice, though most didn’t consider him to be elite until he captured his second Super Bowl ring.
Will Flacco’s story end up similar to Manning’s? Will he, like Eli, go from the underappecaited and unheralded bus driver to Super Bowl champion? Will he also make the jump from good to great to elite?
Only time will tell, but the outcome of this year’s Super Bowl could go a long way in defining Flacco’s still young career.