For about a half of a decade, some people around the National Football League and even fans here have been very critical of Baltimore Ravens quarterback, Joe Flacco.

When the criticism of Flacco starts, he’s often compared to many of his contemporaries. Names like Matt Ryan, Tony Romo and Jay Cutler come up. If you use the playoff talk, you know, the fact that Flacco has won more than the others, critics give all of the credit to the team and none to the quarterback.

Ryan has never won a post-season game and many believe he needs to in order to solidify him as a top tier signal caller. That’s funny, those people are just waiting for Ryan to do what Flacco has already done. Ryan needs to win to be considered great but Joe has won post-season games and he gets no credit.

Tony Romo has won one playoff game and the same thing is being said about him. He needs to advance his Dallas Cowboys deep into the post-season in order to be considered an “elite” quarterback.

Hmmm, Flacco’s been to two AFC Championship games already. Why does Romo’s advancement deep into the post-season mean more for Romo and not for the Cowboys but two appearances in essentially the semi-finals means very little for someone else?

Cutler threw four interceptions on Thursday Night Football against a divisional rival. Can you imagine what’s said today if Joe Flacco threw four interceptions on national television against the Pittsburgh Steelers? No one would be talking about it being only one game. A performance like that would cause the critics to pound their chests, telling everyone who would listen how right they were and how the Ravens aren’t ever going to win as long as Joe Flacco is their quarterback.

On Thursday, I watched one of the more overrated quarterbacks in the NFL do what I’ve seen him do far too often. Jay Cutler threw in the direction of the Chicago Bears way too many times. In the meantime, either Brandon Marshall, talk about overrated, couldn’t get open or Cutler was unable to find him.

Fantasy football owners may love these guys, the wins and losses of players owned on fantasy teams don’t calculate into points. Putting up garbage yards while your team is down 20 doesn’t really matter. I own three fantasy teams myself but I know bad football when I see it.

Time to watch the games with a real critical eye for everyone and not  preconceived notions. There are only a few “elite” quarterbacks in this league. That’s why they’re called “elite.” Everyone else is just trying to find their way. Joe Flacco is better than Jay Cutler and has achieved more than Matt Ryan and Tony Romo. You can give all the credit to Flacco’s team if you want, but his team never had similar success over a four year period before Joe Flacco.

Rob Long


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