News & Notes 7/20: Ravens Quarterback Joe Flacco Likes Run-Pass Option Plays 


Joe Flacco Is Good With Run-Pass Option Plays

When the Ravens drafted Lamar Jackson in the first round, they talked about how they would have to tweak the offense to accommodate both he and, of course, starter Joe Flacco.

Baltimore can't have separate offenses for each quarterback, no matter how different they are in playing style.

Thus, it wouldn't be surprising to see the Ravens weave some run-pass option (RPO) plays into their offense this year, which would require more movement from the quarterback.

While Flacco isn't known for his running ability like Jackson, the veteran is a go for the RPO.

"I think that's honestly all good stuff," Flacco said. "It puts stress on defense. I think it opens up lanes for the running backs, so I think those are definitely good things when you pick to do them in the right spots."

The RPO gives the quarterback the ability to decide whether to hand the ball off, run with it himself or throw it based on how the defense reacts. If Flacco is running the RPO, he obviously wouldn't be taking off running all that much himself, although he could on occasion.

Flacco is faster than many people give him credit for, however. In his first NFL game a decade ago, he ran for a 38-yard touchdown. He also hauled in a 43-yard pass (one of just two career receptions) that season.

"I'm definitely capable [of still doing that]; I think if you asked our strength coaches," Flacco said. "I'm not running too much different than I've always ran, and that's never been great, so that's not that high of a feat. I don't think I'm going to be doing those things, but I'm capable."

The football world was giddy over the Ravens' experimentation with putting Flacco and Jackson on the field together for some tricky plays. Flacco hasn't enjoyed doing such plays in the past, but he's open to the idea now.

"Right now when we do it, I think it's like a big red flag to defense," Flacco said. "But Lamar is a heck of an athlete and he can throw the football, so the opportunities are definitely endless."

Hayden Hurst Misses Practice, But Mark Andrews Returns

The Ravens' rookie tight ends are dealing with the grind of training camp already.

First-round pick Hayden Hurst missed Friday's practice because of a minor soft tissue injury that happened during Thursday's session, Head Coach John Harbaugh said.

On Thursday, third-round rookie tight end Mark Andrews also sat out because of a tissue issue, but he returned Friday.

"Nothing serious," Harbaugh said. "I thought the guys were a of better today in terms of handling the speed of practice and getting through practice, probably because the first day you have a little nervous energy and they burn it up pretty quick."

Marlon Humphrey Not Obsessed With Starting Job

With Jimmy Smith back on the field and participating in 11-on-11 drills, it appears that there will only be one starting spot for Brandon Carr or Marlon Humphrey.

Carr has started every game of his 10-year career. Humphrey is last year's first-round pick who is looking to build on an excellent rookie campaign.

So how does the sophomore approach the competition?

"I just do what I can," he said. "However many reps I get, whether it's a full game, a half game, a few reps, I think you can make an impact whether it's one rep or 10. Whatever reps come my way, I'll be happy."

With that said, Humphrey said he does want the starting job. He talked about his desire to be a Pro Bowl player who is in the debate for the best in the game.

"I think everybody wants to start, but I know there's a time for everything," Humphrey said. "Jimmy and Brandon Carr have done this for a long time, so I'm just trying to soak up as much knowledge as I can from them."

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