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Gary Kubiak Confident Joe Flacco Can Run Bootleg

Posted Feb 18, 2014

The new offensive coordinator said that he’s confident in Flacco's 'ability to do anything.'

Since the Ravens hired Gary Kubiak as the new offensive coordinator, a topic of discussion has been quarterback Joe Flacco’s ability to run the bootleg.

Some have questioned whether Flacco has the athleticism to run the bootleg, which is a key component of Kubiak’s offense.

Kubiak has little doubt Flacco will be up to the task. 

I’m confident in Joe’ ability to do anything,” Kubiak said.

The bootleg is a variation of the play-action pass where the quarterback rolls out of the pocket to make a throw. Quarterbacks need to have the athleticism to get outside of the tackle box and then make throws on the run.

Flacco, 6-foot-6, 245 pounds, is not known for his speed, but Kubiak praised the quarterback’s ability to make plays on the move.

“I’ve watched him play and I think he makes a lot of plays off schedule for a big guy,” Kubiak said. “He can make all of the throws.”

Flacco and the Ravens have used the bootleg pass in previous years, but the concept has become a buzzword recently because Kubiak’s system relies on it more.

“Yeah [the bootleg] is a big part of what we do, but we’ve got to be able to do everything,” Kubiak said. “It’s funny how you get labeled with certain things. I hope that people would look at us and say we’re going to have to do whatever have to do to win.”

The numbers show that Flacco has thrived using play-action pass during his career. Last season, he had a 90.7 quarterback rating when using the play action, compared to a 70.3 rating with no play action.

Kubiak also stressed that running the play action effectively goes beyond the quarterback and builds off the success on the ground game. For defenses to respect the run in play action, the Ravens have to get back to a [add] team that can beat teams on the ground. That will create opportunities for Flacco to make plays running out of the bootleg.

“For us, it starts with being physical, and if we can run the ball then we’ll be able to do all of those exciting things like bootleg and play-action pass,” Kubiak said. “But it starts with running the ball.”

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