If QBs falter, who'll get blame?

If QBs falter, who'll get blame?

There are 80 comments on the Baltimore Sun story from May 4, 2008, titled If QBs falter, who'll get blame?. In it, Baltimore Sun reports that:

Imagine if some day, in the not-too-distant future, we wake up here in town to the harsh realization that ... it wasn't Brian Billick 's fault after all.

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Sparky

Baltimore, MD

#1 May 4, 2008
The key to whether any quarterback has success with this team is going to be heavily influenced by the offensive line which still seems to be operating at a C- level. Nothing will change until we see this unit come together and start taking control of the line play more often than they have. I believe Boller would be adequate with improvement in the offensive line, but I am very interested in seeing Smith play. I actually think Smith is a better fit right now with the way the ofensive line play has been, but nobody, not even Tom Brady would look good with our offensive line. It seems the team did not go after top prospects for offensive line positions as much as I thought they would. What we have now are offensive line players who are not experienced, young, not as physically strong as they need to be and apparently lacking good athleticism and instincts. We'll see.
Clifford

United States

#2 May 4, 2008
I'm glad to see that The Sun is overwhelmingly pessimistic about Flacco. Way to go guys. I understand that writing articles like this give rise to controversy amongst readers like me who feel the need to make a post (which I never do), but still. Articles like this, Steele, only point out the glaring fact that you and others who write about the Ravens take the easy way out by being skeptical at the beginning, because that way if things go bad you can say "I was right" and if they go well you can say "I'm happy I was wrong because I'm a fan of the team." I wish one of you guys would have the guts to back up a gutsy decision like drafting Flacco. His price wasn't nearly as high as you and the media are making it out to be (3rd and 6th round picks for moving up 8 spots in the first round? That's stealing!), and since not getting Ryan was out of the Ravens hand, how can anyone blame them for drafting what they felt was the next best QB? None of you or any fan can say for sure that Henne or Brohm were better or worse than Flacco because none of us are NFL scouts, so let's not pretend we know more than we do. I say we, the fans, do the responsible thing and put some faith into Flacco and the new coaching staff because while they haven't proven anything to us that would cause us to cheer just yet, they also haven't done anything to make us boo - it's still the offseason and no one has put on any pads yet. Flacco needs support from you guys and the fans every minute of his rookie season here. Many have voiced concerns that he'll turn out to be another Kyle Boller, but the fact is that the overwhelming negativity and impatience from fans - from the outset of his career - did every bit as much hindrance to him as his starting on game 1. Grow up Baltimore, and let's show a little faith huh? Personally, I can't think of anyone better than Boller to teach Flacco how to be an incoming 1st round draft pick QB that's supposed to be the savior for the franchise. If nothing else he'll let the coaching staff know where to differentiate Flacco's tutelage from his own so that the same mistakes aren't made again.

Good luck to Flacco. I believe.
Rich

United States

#3 May 4, 2008
Clifford wrote:
I'm glad to see that The Sun is overwhelmingly pessimistic about Flacco. Way to go guys. I understand that writing articles like this give rise to controversy amongst readers like me who feel the need to make a post (which I never do), but still. Articles like this, Steele, only point out the glaring fact that you and others who write about the Ravens take the easy way out by being skeptical at the beginning, because that way if things go bad you can say "I was right" and if they go well you can say "I'm happy I was wrong because I'm a fan of the team." I wish one of you guys would have the guts to back up a gutsy decision like drafting Flacco. His price wasn't nearly as high as you and the media are making it out to be (3rd and 6th round picks for moving up 8 spots in the first round? That's stealing!), and since not getting Ryan was out of the Ravens hand, how can anyone blame them for drafting what they felt was the next best QB? None of you or any fan can say for sure that Henne or Brohm were better or worse than Flacco because none of us are NFL scouts, so let's not pretend we know more than we do. I say we, the fans, do the responsible thing and put some faith into Flacco and the new coaching staff because while they haven't proven anything to us that would cause us to cheer just yet, they also haven't done anything to make us boo - it's still the offseason and no one has put on any pads yet. Flacco needs support from you guys and the fans every minute of his rookie season here. Many have voiced concerns that he'll turn out to be another Kyle Boller, but the fact is that the overwhelming negativity and impatience from fans - from the outset of his career - did every bit as much hindrance to him as his starting on game 1. Grow up Baltimore, and let's show a little faith huh? Personally, I can't think of anyone better than Boller to teach Flacco how to be an incoming 1st round draft pick QB that's supposed to be the savior for the franchise. If nothing else he'll let the coaching staff know where to differentiate Flacco's tutelage from his own so that the same mistakes aren't made again.
Good luck to Flacco. I believe.


Nice comment and I also believe . Boller on the other hand, as nice a guy he is and as hard as he tried he was just a very bad pick. He was never better than an average college Q-B. The Ravens made a big mistake, that's all. They stuck there heads out for Flacco no doubt, but Flacco has many more tools than Kyle. Bigger, more accruate, hopefully bigger better hands, and can stand on his feet, again hopefully.

Since: Nov 07

Baltimore, MD

#4 May 4, 2008
Imagine if some day, in the not-too-distant future, we wake up here in town to the harsh realization that ... we don't have one decent sports writer.

Oh wait...it's already happened.

Since: Nov 07

Baltimore, MD

#5 May 4, 2008
Sparky wrote:
The key to whether any quarterback has success with this team is going to be heavily influenced by the offensive line which still seems to be operating at a C- level. Nothing will change until we see this unit come together and start taking control of the line play more often than they have. I believe Boller would be adequate with improvement in the offensive line, but I am very interested in seeing Smith play. I actually think Smith is a better fit right now with the way the ofensive line play has been, but nobody, not even Tom Brady would look good with our offensive line. It seems the team did not go after top prospects for offensive line positions as much as I thought they would. What we have now are offensive line players who are not experienced, young, not as physically strong as they need to be and apparently lacking good athleticism and instincts. We'll see.
The key is and always has been the O-line -- since the days of Knute Rockne. EVERYTHING in football starts by winning the war in the trenches. It's amazing that the Ravens don't seem to know that. The Browns certainly do. And the improvement in their offense last year is evidence of that.

There were some excellent offensive linemen in this year's draft -- especially at the center position -- that the Ravens passed by. It's going to snake bit them, because the prospect of Chris Chester at center is simply mind boggling to me.

I disagree, however, that all of our O-linemen are too inexperienced and/or overmatched. Grubbs is fantastic. So is Brown. Terry, if he's healthy, is ok at LT. And Yanda is a great guard.(and despite giving up 6 inches and 40 or more pounds, Yanda is actually stronger than Jared Gaither). It's primarily the center position, and right tackle position, where we're in trouble. IF -- and it's a big IF -- Jared Gaither matures and turns his potential into productivity, we could be ok by playing Gaither at RT and shifting Jason Brown to center, IF -- and again, it's another IF -- Brown shows he can handle the added responsibilities of reading the D properly and setting the offense. There are a lot of added responsibilities for the center, and, in the past, the coaching staff was not 100% confident that Brown could handle those responsibilities.

That's why it was a mistake to not draft a center in this year's draft. If the Ravens QBs falter, the blame goes directly to Ozzie Newsome and Eric DeCosta.

And any revisionist tripe about Billick possibly being better than we gave him credit for is just that -- revisionist tripe on the part of Danielle -- I mean David Steele.
Jim from Dundalk

Finksburg, MD

#6 May 4, 2008
Can someone explain to me why last year when the line was so young we didn't go to 'zone blocking ' to make it a bit easier for the young ,line? I admit I don't know much about line play,,,,,,,,,,It just seems all they talked about was the difficult blocking schemes......???
Mark

Fort Lauderdale, FL

#7 May 4, 2008
How in God's name Billick can be absolved of blame for the quarterback situation in Baltimore? He did not draft Boller? Sure he is not the one doing the actual drafting but he lobbied so hard for Boller that he wanted him with the 10th pick. Thank God for Ozzie. Who signed all thos wannabees and has beens and told us to :"trust me on this". Billick's system is a quarterbaxk killer....just look what it did to Elvis Grbac - an accomplished NFL quarterback and to Jim Fasel...an excellent offensive minded coach who was good enough to be a head coach in the NFL.
Billick and his system is responsible for Boller's lack of progress.
On another note everyone is spewing at Ozzie for moving up in the draft to take Flacco...they say it reminds them of the Boller draft. No one seem to remember that the consensus of the "Boller" draft was that we mad a mistake in drafting him we should have moved UP and drafted Leftwich. I ask all thos so called experts where is Leftwich to day? Did he turn out any better than Boller?
Drafting a quarterback in the NFL is a crapshoot.
Does anyone really believe that the Patriots had any idea that Brady would turn out the way he did?
Jon

Butler, PA

#8 May 4, 2008
I wonder how many people were injured when Steele and Preston were racing to see which one could get this headline out first?
Dont worry you 2 will be trying to climb on the bandwagon when Flacco turns this team around. Who will be the blame for your "Tom Tucker" style sports reporting??? Sorry for the Family Guy reference......seemed appropriate.
Anyway, Mark said it best, drafting a QB in the NFL is a crap shoot. Lets just hope we finally have lady luck on our side.
Besides, Flacco is going to be great!! He is the modern prototype QB in the NFL. Height, weight, quick for his size, elusive, and a rocket arm!! Get em Joe!
double B

United States

#9 May 4, 2008
god the sun writers are crap. How long before MBOD starts referring to him as 'My Man Joe'

Pathetic.
Jon

United States

#10 May 4, 2008
I honestly believe Steele and Preston think they are being objective jounalists, when in fact they are being predictably and consistently negative scribes. Steele here is setting up the I-told-you-so foundation in case the QB problems do persist. Do you think it is in him to write an equally positive what-if article? Right.
Harry

United States

#11 May 4, 2008
Ozzie and Billick must share the blame for the Ravens QB past history. The inability to judge QB talent got the Ravens where they are today. When Billick first go there the Ravens had to have Scott Micthell and spent a 3rd rd pick on a QB that Det would have cut, they never learned becasue they did the same thing with McNair a QB Tenn had locked out knew was washed up and would have been cut. In between after going thru the likes of Stoney Case, Tony Banks, Jeff Blake , Dilfer finally led them to a SB. His reward to be let go, that was a huge turning pt with this franchise, a wasted Championship defense under Ozzie and Billicks inability to identify offensive talent, draft it, start at the right time and when to keep it, and design an offense. P. Holmes let go, Dilfer let go, J, Lewis let go, Derek Anderson let go, etc. McNair great 13-3 2006 record, is bull, the defense went 13-3 and besides Boller bailed him out in 5 games that season. GO look at the films the defense went 13-3 that yr and McNair cost the Ravens the playoff game vs the Colts. The Ravens could have signed FA Warner and not wasted any draft picks and might have won a SB with him at QB. I submit that Boller or as some have mentioned even Brady would not be successful being sacked 102 times over the last 5 yrs, behind this OL and with this group of WRs. Us fans had to watch 3 yrs of Flynn being blown up stepping on Bollers, Wrights and McNairs feet. Last yr only Mason was healthy, so what, I mean how far does 100 2 yd catches get you? Insetad of all the blame being placed upon Boller I challenge any writer or fan to look at the WRs the Ravens have, nobody can tell me they are better than any wrs even on the teams in their own Div. let alone the rest of the league. Billick's offense was High schoolish. Without better Ol play, or better wrs or maybe even a healthy Heap for a change, and better coaching and play calling then neither Boller, Smith or Flacco will be successful. I hope we don't have to blame anyone this yr casue that will mean the new coach did a better job of coaching and the Ravens have a better season. But on paper it sure seems they have a talent gap to close in their own Div.that's why they finished last.
MJM

Pasadena, MD

#12 May 4, 2008
Mark wrote:
How in God's name Billick can be absolved of blame for the quarterback situation in Baltimore? He did not draft Boller? Sure he is not the one doing the actual drafting but he lobbied so hard for Boller that he wanted him with the 10th pick. Thank God for Ozzie. Who signed all thos wannabees and has beens and told us to :"trust me on this". Billick's system is a quarterbaxk killer....just look what it did to Elvis Grbac - an accomplished NFL quarterback and to Jim Fasel...an excellent offensive minded coach who was good enough to be a head coach in the NFL.
Billick and his system is responsible for Boller's lack of progress.
On another note everyone is spewing at Ozzie for moving up in the draft to take Flacco...they say it reminds them of the Boller draft. No one seem to remember that the consensus of the "Boller" draft was that we mad a mistake in drafting him we should have moved UP and drafted Leftwich. I ask all thos so called experts where is Leftwich to day? Did he turn out any better than Boller?
Drafting a quarterback in the NFL is a crapshoot.
Does anyone really believe that the Patriots had any idea that Brady would turn out the way he did?
Well put. Many forget that Leftwich is currently not on a team while Boller, obviously not a star, is still fighting to be a starter. At the very least, Kyle has proven to ben an excellent backup in this league. I would love for Flacco to become the man and Boller to stay on as his backup. Boller has given his all to this team and this town and has had to put up with being thrown under the bus by his teammates, the so called sports writers and many of our so called fans. He has been the consumate professional and shown true heart. Okay so he didn't turn out to be the next Tom Brady but he still can be a very productive backup for this or some other team. And through it all he has never had one bad word to say about anyone. Here's hoping he goes to a team and a town that appreciate him because that certainly hasn't and won't happen here.
paulie

Saint Paul, MN

#14 May 4, 2008
skaybaltimore wrote:
Imagine if some day, in the not-too-distant future, we wake up here in town to the harsh realization that ... we don't have one decent sports writer.

Oh wait...it's already happened.
Yep, third generation. Must be the know nothing ghost of Phil Jackman roaming the halls of the Sun Sports Depatment - still jonesing for free drinks ... 8-(

Since: Nov 07

Baltimore, MD

#15 May 4, 2008
Excellent post, Harry from Rochester.
Herb

Baltimore, MD

#16 May 4, 2008
100% correct this article. A 1st. round pick from Delaware? Unheard of. And the way we got him! Move down, move up. Gotta be Unitas the 2nd.
C-raven-C

Warrenton, VA

#17 May 4, 2008
1. The year we drafted Boller, after Palmer went #1, the options were Boller, Leftwich, Grossman. There was no right answer, and we HAD to get a QB.
2. Billicks only good years as an OC he had access to some of the best WRs in recent history. His "greatness" was a mirage.
3. If Cam can make Cleo Lemon look like a serviceable QB behind the train wreck that is the MIA O-Line, he will have little trouble turning around our offense. Run the ball, make safe throws to the TE. Once you get rolling, then you can let loose. Cam understands this.
4. The Sun needs new football beat writers. This is past the point of being pathetic.
Rob

Las Vegas, NV

#19 May 4, 2008
They finished last because they gave up more big pass plays than any team in the leauge and they had a guy at quarterback who was already a year past his expiration date ...now those are only 2 small adjustments that could easily make a very competitive football team substantially more competitive.... get the old injured guy off the field and add 2 young healthy competitive corners ...thats it.... its not rocket science..its not that complicated.... its not mysterious or complex...the offensive line is porous...and with Savage adding Shaun Rodgers,Corey willams and Ahtyba Rubin there wil be no running on the Browns...the stealers are always good against the Run so Cincinattis your only hope as far as any run game...they better hope their late o line picks Cousins and Hale are competitive and productive....I would have taken O lineman right after Mcelvin and Jenkins...with the state of this o line unless it drastically improves against fierce competition, Smith is the only quarterback who can survive and possibly flourish...I know Flacco's a big boy.... but If anyone can break him its Shaun Rodgers... that would be a shame.

Since: Nov 07

Baltimore, MD

#20 May 4, 2008
Rob wrote:
They finished last because they gave up more big pass plays than any team in the leauge and they had a guy at quarterback who was already a year past his expiration date ...now those are only 2 small adjustments that could easily make a very competitive football team substantially more competitive.... get the old injured guy off the field and add 2 young healthy competitive corners ...thats it.... its not rocket science..its not that complicated.... its not mysterious or complex...the offensive line is porous...and with Savage adding Shaun Rodgers,Corey willams and Ahtyba Rubin there wil be no running on the Browns...the stealers are always good against the Run so Cincinattis your only hope as far as any run game...they better hope their late o line picks Cousins and Hale are competitive and productive....I would have taken O lineman right after Mcelvin and Jenkins...with the state of this o line unless it drastically improves against fierce competition, Smith is the only quarterback who can survive and possibly flourish...I know Flacco's a big boy.... but If anyone can break him its Shaun Rodgers... that would be a shame.
And the droning of the "we didn't get 2 CBs" continues, just as I said it would. Dude...if there is anyone who posts here that hasn't heard your take on the "we didn't get two CBs waaaah waaaah waaaah" already, they're braid dead. As you obviously are for continuing to post the same tired thing without a break. Give it a rest. Your act is beyond old at this point.

Since: Nov 07

Baltimore, MD

#21 May 4, 2008
LOL. Brain dead. Not braid dead.
JwillsNest

Buchanan, NY

#22 May 4, 2008
David, it wasn't just QB that stunk during Billick's reign. It was the offense in totality. Sure, we managed to get some great seasons from our RBs, but we largely made due with trash heap WRs and QBs. And even when we did get a decent player (McGahee), he didn't touch the ball enough. Playcalling was atrocious, whether it was Billick, Fassel or Cavanaugh. No, Billick isn't solely to blame, but Baltimore was sold a faulty bill of goods when they labeled him an "offensive guru" after one good year in Minnesota. Let's give Harbaugh a chance to fail (or succeed) before we start analyzing how "wrong" we all were to run him out of town.

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