What Role Is Joe Flacco Expecting To Have With Browns?…

The Browns are excited about the leadership and experience Joe Flacco brings to the quarterback room as they work to get him up to speed quickly.

A week ago, the announcement that star quarterback Deshaun Watson was lost for the season came with a sobering reality the the Browns didn’t have many levers to pull in attempting to fill the critical void left at the most important position in football.

With the trade deadline past and the free agent market having been scoured over like a department store on Black Friday, Cleveland was left with the QB options currently on the roster. That paved the way for rookie fifth-round pick, Dorian Thompson-Robinson to make his second career start against the Steelers last weekend, but general manager Andrew Berry vowed to add a third QB.

That third QB wound up being Joe Flacco, signed to the Browns practice squad after working out for the team on Friday. And while head coach Kevin Stefanski has already named Thompson-Robinson his starter for Cleveland’s Week 12 road trip to Denver, the presence of Flacco may put Stefanski in a precarious situation down the stretch of the season.

If Thompson-Robinson struggles at any point, Flacco is likely to be the next man up – once he’s signed to the active roster and fully up to speed with the offense. The latter of those tasks is likely to take some time, which is why he isn’t thinking about his role on this team.

“I haven’t really looked that much into it,” Flacco said. “I wanna take it day-by-day. I’m a veteran guy that’s been around at this point in the season with a team that’s doing well, so I think there’s a lot of different things I can bring to the table. But I honestly just wanna keep it day-to-day and focus on what I can. Right now that’s just learning the offense and becoming part of the team.”


A veteran answer from the 15-year vet. That response is one of the things that intrigued the Browns about Flacco. Earlier in the week Stefanski described the 38-year-old’s role as one of “support,” citing his experience as a valuable trait that can be of benefit to both the quarterback room and the team.


On Wednesday, Flacco proved he’s already taking pride in that suggested role with the Browns, providing some encouraging words for Thompson-Robinson who is now fighting to keep the starting job on a weekly basis.


“I’ve been there as a rookie,” Flacco said. “You’ve got so much going through your head and you’re worried about little things. I’m talking about focusing on the daily grind and there’s little things throughout the day that he’s probably so focused on too that the rest of it becomes nonsense. If you’re able to just focus on that little thing you’re doing at that time then that’s the best way you can keep focused and keep the task at hand. It looks like he’s doing that.”


Joe Flacco Speaks With The Cleveland Media For The First Time

Flacco has plenty of familiarity with mentoring young quarterbacks. Just last season, he was in a similar role with the Jets, who were looking to nurture 2021 second overall pick, Zach Wilson to become their franchise QB.

When Wilson started the season sidelined with an injury, Flacco captained the offense for the first three weeks– a stretch that included a Week 2, 13-point comeback win in the final two minutes of regulation to beat his new team 31-30. After Wilson returned to action in Week 4, Flacco took on more of a mentoring role with the younger QB. He wound up finishing the season with 1,051 yards, five touchdowns and three interceptions.


Of course, the most notable years of his career were spent with the Baltimore Ravens from 2008-2018, winning a Lombardi in 2012 thanks to one of the most memorable quarterback playoff runs in NFL history. He has amassed more than 40,000 passing yards and 200 touchdowns in his career. Cleveland represents Flacco’s fourth team in five years, including stops in Denver and the aforementioned Jets.


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