Actually, we're talking about from when Caldwell called plays. I recall Jim admitting to not having enough time to intergrate himself properly leading up to that Broncos game but the week after, Joe was lights out against the Giants. That's with the previous bad o-line.Yeah it was the old line but they got a Grade A performance from that line. The Giants were missing Tuck and Canty on the d-line and their best DB (Phillips). Don't read that as taking anything away from Joe or Jim but anytime you have (2) 100yd rushers on the same team your O-line dominated the game (224yds rushing, 0 sacks, 2 hits).
It's more about just the numbers. Joe's pocket awareness is largely better. I've mentioned before that Faulk commented in speculation on Cam not letting Joe move around much in the pocket. As far fetched as it seemed initially (not disrespect Faulk) it seems like there's something to it since Joe's been moving leaps and bounds better in the pocket and escape sure sacks.I don't want to sound argumentative but I don't see the OC having anything to do with pocket awareness. The fact is Joe is about average in that regard but when you only get hit 2-3 or times a game you're automatically going to be more aware of the field because you have confidence your guys are keeping you clean.
Whether it's confidence or just a better play caller in Caldwell, Joe's become a better QB. You can say he's done this before, but I can tell you he's never thrown three TDs in three straight games before without looking. Going by his overall TD numbers, I actually wonder if he's every done that three games in an entire season. This doesn't include the lack of INTs. He's been putting the ball in the perfect spot a lot more than normal as well. Call it what you want but this isn't the same QB that started the season. We just need to see if this will be the same one to start next seasonKeep him clean he'll play well. Hit him he'll be old Joe - albeit with a little more confidence I think.
It's the same thought process when comparing Cam vs. Caldwell. Superior O-line play was the difference IMO - not the playcaller.I'd agree that the O-line was the big difference, but I have to believe that Caldwell will be a better fit for Joe as well. I felt his play calling was better, he didn't outsmart himself and we have all heard that the relationship between Joe and Cam was not the greatest. Look at what happened with Drew Brees and Phillip Rivers once they got out from under Cam. I think it became pretty obvious that Cam did not loosen the reigns on the QB and let them have adequate control over the offense. Caldwell obviously is used to an empowered QB (Peyton Manning). I think it's safe to say that Joe will not be looking over his shoulder with Caldwell. It seems to be a good/better fit for Joe. Wouldn't be surprised if we saw more of what we saw in this postseason next year. Naturally, a crappy O-line can easily stiffle that, but all things equal, I'll take Caldwell over Cameron.
What he did put to rest with this run was the question of whether or not he could lead a team to a Super Bowl.
Ok let's be honest about this. This five game stretch by Joe was the best of his career.Agreed 100%. That doesn't mean he hasn't had great stretches in the past. The opening few weeks of the 2011 season come to mind.
Actually, we're talking about from when Caldwell called plays. I recall Jim admitting to not having enough time to intergrate himself properly leading up to that Broncos game but the week after, Joe was lights out against the Giants. That's with the previous bad o-line.Okay, but the Giants got virtually no pressure on Flacco in that game either (0 sacks). This isn't about the O-line so much as it is about Flacco and how he plays while under pressure. Against the Giants, their defense was short handed (no Justin Tuck) and was struggling to get pressure, so Flacco played well. In the playoffs, with an O-line that was playing fantastic, Joe was under no pressure and played well.
Speaking of which, has anyone broken the news to LaMarr Woodley?LOL that was a setup by ESPN.
I'd agree that the O-line was the big difference, but I have to believe that Caldwell will be a better fit for Joe as well. I felt his play calling was better, he didn't outsmart himself and we have all heard that the relationship between Joe and Cam was not the greatest.I don't want to come off as trying to dampen anyone's spirits but this is a subject that has bothered me for years (Arians, Cameron). It didn't matter what Cameron called. If the passing game was struggling fans wanted the ball in Rice's hands. If the running game wasn't working fans complained about running too much on first down.
I don't want to come off as trying to dampen anyone's spirits
You may not want to but you certainly are comming off that way. It's ok man, the Steelers are still a good team, a well run organization, and will be in the mix year in and year out. You don't need to continually come and try to find every possible angle where the Raven fans shouldn't be excited about their team. You could sit and pick at every team in the NFL and find reasons to worry. I don't think it's a coincidence you are totally disreagarding the coordinator change as making any difference and attacking an O-line that will possibly take a step back next year. So please excuse Raven's fans being positive about a cooridnator change that has led to the Raven's most consistent 5 game stretch on offense since Flacco has been here with many different O-line's, good and bad. Not to mention the fact that the Raven's had the division basically wrapped up even with our "bad" O-line. Let's face it the Raven's will most likely be losing a lot of players this offseason so they will probably take a step back next year. Who knows though the Raven's were most definitely a "one and done" team this year so anything is possible.
What I find really funny about this Joe Flacco conversation is that about 6-8 weeks ago, most of the Ravens fans in these forums were perfectly alright with a scenario that saw him leaving town after this season. Most of you wanted him to stay, but only for the right price...which was something like $12-14M/year at the time.I think you're making a blanket statement. Virtually no Ravens fan wants Joe to leave then or now for any price. Joe certainly has stepped up in the last 4 weeks and is definitely bumped his stock from $14M to the ~$20M a year mark. I really still cringe over a $20M, 5 yr deal and have always been in favor of a ~7yr deal for well over the $100M mark because he young enough and has proven to be durable and now a team leader and top NFL QB.
What QB ISN'T better with a clean pocket?That's completely fair and don't misconstrue what I'm saying (as the other guy that jumped into the middle of the discussion did). In no way is it a criticism of Joe because as you say they are all better when not pressured. My message is less about Joe and more about the notion that Jim Caldwell is responsible for Joe's play. I just don't believe it and in general I think the criticism of OCs is completely overblown. I dealt with it in Pittsburgh for 5 seasons.
I think the change to in Coordinators brought about a couple of key differences. 1st and foremost, was balance.I think this is a common misconception. Balance is a product of an offense that is working more than the reason. When things are working it's easy to stay balanced because you're converting 3rd downs. The Ravens didn't run the ball well at all on Sunday but they went 9/16 on third down conversions. It's easy to keep dialing up runs that produce 2.7 ypc when your QB can convert 3rd downs.
Second, Jim Caldwell used Jacoby Jones a lot more frequently in the passing game which opened up Boldin, the tight ends, and the runningbacks in the middle of the field in the passing game.That's really not true. By any measure (snaps, catches) Jacoby played more snaps under Cameron than he did under Caldwell. He played less than 1/3 of the snaps (20) on Sunday.
Finally, Jim Caldwell made IMO much better second half adjustments and seemed to be more willing to not stubbornly continue doing things that are not working.Hats off to him for putting the game in Joe's hands in the 2nd half vs. Indy. I like the sink or swim mentality and I think it gave Joe some confidence. Outside of that I thought the Ravens played pretty even in the other games.
Either way, we should probably pick this conversation up down the road. Now is the time to celebrate a victory and a Super Bowl.Agreed.