Late For Work 10/29: Unflappable Flacco

Plus Ray talks about his place as the NFL’s best and Josh McDaniels answers why he turned down the Ravens.

Posted by Sarah Ellison on Thursday, October 29th, 2009 at 9:09 am | Categories: Late For Work, Sarah Ellison

Unflappable Flacco

By now, many of us know Joe Flacco’s story. The oldest of six kids, Flacco was an underestimated quarterback who never had a winning season in high school and was forced to sit as a backup during his “pride-swallowing days” at the University of Pittsburgh. Flacco eventually left Pitt and got his chance to play as a junior at the University of Delaware.

Elizabeth Merrill of retold the story again, but with a few new interesting tidbits.

Apparently Flacco told his Delaware coach, K.C. Keeler, that he was pondering playing baseball because he was a senior and every prudent man has a Plan B. I love it! Most young men dreaming of playing in the NFL would need a good reality check speech, but Flacco needed the opposite. His coach had to remind his quarterback that Plan A was about to be realized.

“Keeler’s mouth dropped wide open.
‘Joe, do you realize that the scouts are coming in?’ Keeler said.
‘Do you realize, Joe, that you will be an NFL draft pick next year?
Flacco paused, and gave his coach a puzzled look.

One other interesting detail in the feature is that Flacco has turned down dozens of endorsements because he figures he makes enough money playing football and doesn’t want to waste his time on the extracurriculars.

I have to admit I was wondering about Flacco’s endorsements after I saw Matt Ryan become the face of Gillette. It’s true, I still compare Flacco and Ryan just because they were both drafted in the same round of the same year. I even compare their endorsement deals. But maybe I should stop.

Joe is a much better quarterback than he is an actor. Check out Ryan’s Gillette commercial and Flacco’s blooper from his Pizza Hut commercial.

Matt Ryan’s Gillette Commercial:

Sports Videos, News, Blogs

Joe Flacco’s Pizza Hut Blooper:

Lewis talks about his place among the NFL’s best

Yesterday, Ryan Mink (who is the for filling in for me this week) presented the question: Will there ever be another Ray?

Lewis was on the cover of the Sporting News that first appeared on Oct. 26 and the website posted a few excerpts from his interview with Steve Greenberg in that edition. Ray himself touched on Mink’s question.


SN: Who is your successor as the game’s next great middle linebacker?
Lewis: I like (49ers’ Patrick) Willis. But I use this example a lot: You don’t ask Chuck Norris if he can beat Bruce Lee. Do you got great skills? Yes. Are you both deadly? Yes. But there’s only one Bruce. I tell Patrick, “There’s only one lion right now.” I love watching the Serengeti, the way lions live. The only way the king lion loses his crown is by somebody physically defeating him. That, for me, is the easiest thing about my game and football — they have to beat me as a man, and I just don’t think anybody’s working that hard.

McDaniels declined interview for Ravens head coaching position

When the Ravens were searching for a new head coach two years ago, Broncos head coach Josh McDaniels was then the New England Patriots’ offensive coordinator who had just helped lead his team to a perfect 16-0 regular season.

At the time, McDaniels declined to interview for the vacancy.

“First off, I really appreciated the opportunity, but there were two reasons why it wasn’t the right time for me,” McDaniels said Wednesday on a conference call. “One, the season we were involved in [during which the Patriots went 16-0 in the regular season] required a lot of our time. We were all putting a lot into it, trying to finish it the way we wanted to. And secondly, I just didn’t feel like I was as ready as I wanted to be to handle that type of challenge. I didn’t know at the time how much more time I was going to need to feel like I was capable of doing it, but certainly I didn’t feel like that was the perfect time for me and moved on, finished that season and tried to improve myself in that area when I could during the course of the off season last year. I felt much better about it this year.”

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