Quarterbacks have had better games, but not many have ever had more fun than Joe Flacco. In Sunday's win over the Raiders, there were hugs, chest bumps and plenty of smiles during his all-pro, all-purpose performance.
It looked like a Flacco re-do of the kids' Punt, Pass and Kick contest. This was Joe's Run, Pass and Catch contest.
The quarterback's day included a 12-yard touchdown run, a 70-yard scoring pass and a 43-yard catch that was a stumble away from being another touchdown.
The NFL has had some great triple threats over the years; Baltimore's Lenny Moore and the Bears' Gale Sayers could beat you running, receiving and returning kicks.
My partner Tom Matte had his moments running, passing and receiving, Packers Hall of Famer Paul Hornung did it running, catching and kicking, but I'm not sure we've ever seen a triple-threat quarterback with a run, pass and catch resume.
For years, Rex Ryan has been the mad scientist with the Ravens' defense. Now he's got mad company with Cam Cameron in the offensive lab.
In the spirit of the season, Cam busted out the trick-or-treat offense in Sunday's 29-10 win. The tricks included quarterbacks Flacco and Troy Smith on the field at the same time, now playfully known as "The Suggs Package."
The Ravens also revived the "option" with Troy Smith pitching to Ray Rice for a 21-yard gain. The goal-line offense went "Super Jumbo" when 345-pound Haloti Ngata became the largest tight end on the planet.
Did the element of surprise make all this go? Maybe the struggling Raiders had a lot to do with it, but whatever it was, the Ravens made it work, and the fans loved the wrinkles.
Why not find a way to get a playmaker like Troy Smith on the field for a different look and change of pace? I always thought Bill Cowher's Steelers did a good job of making use of their best athletes to confuse defenses.
Gadget plays generally have a short shelf-life, but play-makers don't. The Suggs Package was a winner, producing big plays for an offense that has long been lacking them.
I think the Ravens got away with some costly penalties; these plays were wiped out by flags:
- Mason catch for 32 yards.
- McGahee run for 22 yards.
- McGahee 3-yard touchdown run.
- Rice 7-yard catch for a touchdown. (Flacco scored on next play.)
It was amazing the way Ray Rice kept drives alive. He converted on third-and-9, third-and-12, third-and-20 and third-and-7 for a touchdown that was called back.
I think Jon Ogden's Ring of Honor ceremony was a good dress rehearsal for his induction in Canton in five years. J.O. thanks for being everything Baltimore fans could ask for. You did us proud on and off the field.
Long-time and respected broadcast journalist Scott Garceau has covered Baltimore sports, including all of its pro football teams, for the last 30 years. Scott, who was the radio voice of Ravens football for the team's first 10 seasons (1996-2005), is a seven-time Maryland Sportscaster of the Year. Garceau is also honored as Baltimore's Pro Football Hall of Fame selector/voter. A native of the Upper Peninsula in Michigan, where he is a member of the area Hall of Fame, Scott has covered the NFL since 1971.