Joe Flacco Wants To Beat New Engalnd Badly

Baltimore Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco spoke with the media on Wednesday about beating the New England Patriots, Ray Lewis and the journey to the Super Bowl.

On the good numbers he has had and the impact the offensive line has on them:
“The O-line, I think that’s where it starts all the time. If those guys are playing well, I think we play well as an offense, and I think that goes the same across the league. And, these guys have really stepped up and are starting to play really well.”

On his thoughts after LB Ray Lewis designated him “The General” after last week’s game:
“(laughing) I was getting beat up in the tunnel before the game by him, just taking a bunch of hits, and he was talking to me. It was pretty cool. Anytime somebody like that comes up to you – a leader like that – a guy that’s had so much success in this league and is so loved by so many people, it’s obviously pretty cool.”

On how he uses LB Ray Lewis’ “last ride” as a motivation to continue on:
“You guys ask so many questions about it, and you make a big deal about it, but when we’re out there, I think he’s giving us the same emotional high that he always gives us. He always tries to jolt us forward a little bit on gameday and get everybody going in his own little way. When we’re out there playing on Sunday, that’s the last thing we’re really thinking about. We’re thinking about what we have to do to win this football game and get the ball in the end zone, and for them, stop the other offense. So, maybe it’s working more than I would like to admit, but I think that’s something that you kind of sit back and can enjoy after you’ve gotten the win and say, ‘Man, it’s pretty cool that we were able to do that and get another step further and closer to where we want to be for that guy.’”

On if he agrees that nothing else matters besides beating New England: “Yes.”

On what changes he has seen in the Patriots’ secondary:
“They’re a good football team, and they’re still going to attack us in what they feel like is going to put pressure on us. I think they’re going to probably come up and put pressure on our receivers. They always – throughout the years – like to get up and not allow our tight ends and our inside guys to get off the ball very well and play over the top of the outside guys. We’ll see. We’ll see if they match them on Torrey [Smith] or Anquan [Boldin] or anything like that. I think they’ve let up some yards in that area, but at the same time, they do a good job of playing very well and playing some man [coverage] underneath, and like I said, getting pressure, getting their hands on those guys to kind of re-route them a little bit. So, we’ll have to be very good this week at combating that a little bit and running crisp routes and making sure that we don’t allow them to hold us up.”

On the differences in this year’s Ravens team from last year’s:
“Everybody is a year more experienced. We were a pretty young football team last year, and I think guys like Torrey [Smith] and our tight ends and Tandon Doss and Ray [Rice] now have a little bit of a spell with Bernard [Pierce], and our offensive line is playing very well. I don’t know what the difference is [from] last year. I felt we were a really good team last year, and we had a really good shot. Like I said, I think we’re a little more experienced at this point, and we’re playing very confidently right now.”

On if he elevates his play in big games:
“No, I don’t really think so. You go out there and you play to win the football game and some of the things that have been required to win these football games have maybe been a little bit over the top and a little abnormal, but no. I would like to think that I go out there and play consistently and approach everything the same way. I think that’s been proved out. We win a lot of football games around here, and this is actually the third time I’m standing up here getting ready to play in an AFC Championship game. It’s pretty crazy when you think about it. Who knows what it’s going to take to win on Sunday, but our mindset is it’s going to take our best, and we’re ready to go give it.”

On if the game speeds up during the playoffs and how a team might slow down the pace:
“No, I don’t find that. I think that’d be putting every NFL player … I think that’d be a criticism to every NFL player out there. The fact that you’re playing one way in the regular season and a completely different way in the playoffs, I think that’s a bunch of crap. I think we go out there and lay it on the line every week, and like I said, I’d be doing myself a disservice and everybody else in the league a disservice if I were to say I thought the playoffs were different. I really don’t. There’s obviously a little bit more on the line, because if you don’t win, you go home. But you’ve put yourself into that position and every one of those games was just as important as the others, so I don’t really buy into that.”

On if he has time to reflect on the game-tying touchdown during the Denver Broncos game:
“Yes, a couple of hours after the game when we were still on that emotional high. After that, you have to put it behind you and take it for what it was and move on. It was obviously a pretty special moment, and we were pretty excited about it. It won’t mean anything come this week.”

On if throwing his last interception against Denver in Week 15 has affected him at all:
“No. It affected me right there. I was pretty unhappy about it, and rather than possibly making the game 10-7, it was 17-0. I think I do a pretty good job of taking care of the ball on a consistent basis. Things like that happen, and you have to be willing to deal with it and come out and continue to play the way that you think you can. I think that’s all that has been happening.”

On his thoughts on making the cover of Sports Illustrated:
“I don’t know. I think I’ve seen it on an Instagram picture, but I haven’t really seen it.”

On if there is a curse to being on the cover of Sports Illustrated:
“Sure hope not. It just depends on how we go play on Sunday. We’ll see.”

Source: Baltimore Ravens Media