More times than not on Sunday, Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco was flushed from the pocket and was running for his life in the team’s 20-13 win over the Houston Texans. Flacco faced constant pressure and was under great duress throughout the course of the game due to the Texans’ ruthless pass rush.
Sometimes Flacco managed to escape and sometimes he didn’t.
After all was said and done, Flacco had been sacked five times. The fourth-year veteran wasn’t thinking of the sacks following the game. He was already preparing for the New England Patriots, the team the Ravens will face in next Sunday’s AFC championship game.
“We know how tough it is to go into a place like that,” Flacco said, via The Carroll County Times. “As an offense, you have to go up there and think about putting points on the board.”
During the regular season, Flacco was sacked five times just once and that came in a 34-14 defeat to the San Diego Chargers on Dec. 18
On Sunday, the Ravens offense got off to a fast start, putting up 17 points in the first quarter. But in the final three quarters of the game, the Ravens offense managed to tack on just three points due in large part to the Texans’ persistent front-seven.
“We knew that they had a good front seven that could create a pass rush,” Flacco said. “There were a few times today where they had a good pass rush, and they didn’t get me just by bringing those four guys. I don’t think I anticipated it, but at the same time, I knew I had to prepare for it.”
Despite the relentless pass rush from the Texans, Flacco managed to go a pedestrian 14-of-27 for 176 yards and two touchdowns.
In his post-game interview, Ravens head coach John Harbaugh praised his quarterback, and wasn’t critical of him in the least sense. Harbaugh didn’t take pleasure in watching Flacco run around, but it wasn’t pointless, Harbaugh said.
“That’s not what you want,” Harbaugh said. “I thought Joe did a good job under fire. That’s a really good pass rush team. We didn’t do a great job at times at blocking. At times, we did. He did a good job in the pocket, stepping up and making a couple of throws, and when he did get sacked-minimizing the negative play and making sure we punted.”