Joe Flacco: A Win's A Win, But No Need For So Many Heart Attacks


Head Coach John Harbaugh's take on Sunday's 19-17 win in Jacksonville?

"All I can say is, that's amazing. It's awesome. It's incredible. For us, it's a fabulous victory," he said. "I am very excited we won the football game."

The Ravens are 3-0 for the first time since 2009. They were 0-3 at the start of last year.

The Ravens once again didn't earn many style points, as it took another blocked kick and a 54-yard bomb by kicker Justin Tucker to overcome a fourth quarter otherwise riddled by mistakes on offense and special teams.

Baltimore's three wins are over teams who have a combined one win among them. The Buffalo Bills blew out the Arizona Cardinals Sunday while the Ravens' Week 2 and Week 3 opponents, the Cleveland Browns and Jacksonville Jaguars, are both winless.

"A win's a win. They all count," outside linebacker Terrell Suggs said. "This is the NFL, man, you can't take any wins for granted, as we all learned last year. 3-0 is 3-0, no matter what you all say about it. You all can't discredit the teams we play."

The Ravens lost nine games by eight points (one possession) or less last year. Heading into this season, the team knew it had to reverse that trend in order to get back into the playoffs.

Baltimore has done that so far, making the critical plays to pull out victories. In Week 1, the defense closed out the Bills in the second half. In Week 2, the offense came roaring back from 20 points behind. On Sunday, the defense created multiple turnovers and the special teams unit made two huge plays in the final minutes.

Suggs said the difference between last year and this year is that the Ravens have their key weapons – including himself, wide receiver Steve Smith Sr., running back Justin Forsett and, of course, quarterback Joe Flacco – back from injuries.

"When you have your whole team, when you have all your pieces to this working machine, these close wins down the stretch tend to fall in your favor," Suggs said.

"It was controlled chaos, that's all it is," Smith added. "In the fourth quarter, there's either blowouts or there's nail-biters and that definitely was a nail-biter. We make it interesting, and I think we make it more interesting than we really like."

Smith's final point is what the Monday morning quarterbacks often point to. Should the Ravens be winning by such small margins?

Tucker and other players said a message early in the week was that the Ravens don't always have to make it so close. At the same time, he applauded the resolve the players and coaches once again showed.

Flacco said all that matters is being 3-0, but acknowledged that the Ravens would like to be more dominant over an entire game.

"There's no need to be giving people heart attacks every single week, but if we win, we win," he said.

"Having said that, we have to play a little bit cleaner. On offense, we have to find ways to get more points. We played a solid three quarters of football, but we're not scoring."

While the defense has – outside of one bad quarter in Cleveland – been lights out, Flacco said the Ravens offense is still a work in a progress. Many pieces have had limited time playing with each other.

Flacco is coming off an ACL injury that kept him out of most of the preseason. He has new targets in Mike Wallace and Breshad Perriman, who missed his entire rookie year with a knee injury. Smith is coming off a season-ending Achilles tear. Tight end Dennis Pitta missed the past two years because of a second hip surgery.

"I think at some point we might see, we're building up, building up, building up and all of a sudden it turns over really quickly. That's what I'm looking for is for it to turn over really quickly and for us to explode as an offense and really take off," Flacco said.

The Ravens are stacking wins and doing what the pundits said they had to do at this point in the season, versus this part of the schedule against teams with losing records. But games will only continue to get tougher, including down the final stretch and most certainly in the playoffs if the Ravens make it.

"You don't want to have to be winning these games the way we are," Flacco said. "I think it makes us tougher as a football team, but at the same time, you're not going to get away with this when you're playing really, really good teams in January."

Check out the best photos from Jacksonville as the Ravens battled the Jaguars in Week 3!

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