Harbaugh Believes Taylor Can Be Backup

With each performance, Tyrod Taylor is making a solid case to be Joe Flacco’s top backup.

Posted by Mike Duffy on Sunday, August 28th, 2011 at 2:59 pm | Categories: Mike Duffy

Throughout training camp, there has been a call from pundits and fans for the Ravens to add a veteran backup for quarterback Joe Flacco.

But with each preseason performance, rookie Tyrod Taylor makes his case better and better.

Ravens Head Coach John Harbaugh said he believes Taylor can do the job if it comes to that.

“I would be confident that he would go in there and play well,” said Harbaugh.  “I’m never comfortable. I’m not comfortable with any of it.

“I think he can be the backup quarterback. Is he going to be the backup quarterback? We shall see.”

Coming off a night where he completed 11 of 18 passes for 125 yards and a touchdown, Taylor’s finishing off of the Washington Redskins was the latest in a string of strong preseason outings.

Taylor led a game-winning drive in the Ravens’ 34-31 win last Thursday night in the final minute, the first such situation he’s faced among the professional ranks.

The three-play, 35-yard march was set up by LaQuan Williams’ punt return to the 35-yard line, but then Taylor took control.

He scrambled for a 15-yard gain on first down.  On the next play, he nailed wideout Justin Harper for an 11-yard connection, then capped the drive with a 9-yard dart to Brandon Jones, who stretched over the goal line to knock the pylon.

Taylor said he thinks he is making a good impression.

“I’m learning and continuing to [try] to get better,” said the sixth-round draft pick.  

“My job is just to move the team when I’m out there on the field.  That’s what I’m focused on.

Throughout the preseason, Taylor has been consistently solid, completing 35 of 57 attempts (61.4 percent completion rating) for 392 yards and a touchdown. 

His two interceptions came in the preseason opener, and since then, the Virginia Tech product has been pick-free.

The Ravens could still go after a veteran free agent quarterback once cuts are made in the coming weeks, but Taylor is hoping he’s shown enough in his limited time with the team.

“I know I have to impress these people that will be watching me as far as the number two job, but at the time, I’m just trying to be the best quarterback I can be and show the coaches that I can do [the job],” said Taylor.

“During the lockout, Joe went over the playbook with me, some things that I should learn,” he further explained.  “I kept those in my head and studied that book as much as possible, so I think that kind of helped me out.”

Tags: , , ,