Granted we now have the benefit of hindsight, but Baltimore Ravens’ Head Coach John Harbaugh made a grave mistake in yesterday’s game versus the Los Angeles Chargers. Coach Harbaugh should have benched rookie Quarterback Lamar Jackson for the veteran Quarterback Joe Flacco. This move has a major historical precedent in the not so distant past.
In the 2001 AFC Championship Game, The New England Patriots actually sat Tom Brady down after he struggled to move the ball against the Pittsburgh Steelers for former starter and first overall pick in 1993, Drew Bledsoe. Bledsoe didn’t have mind-blowing stats in relief; however this was the spark the team needed and they ultimately won the game and their dynasty was off and running.
While Lamar Jackson had an excellent fourth quarter and almost pulled off an improbable comeback against the Chargers, his confidence has to be rattled, since after three-quarters he had a negative two yards passing after being sacked six times. Besides the horrendous passing yards, Jackson also had several issues holding onto the football, including the strip sack in the waning moments of the fourth quarter that put the game on ice.
Harbaugh doubled down on his thoughts after the game by saying Jackson was his guy and he will root for Joe Flacco wherever he ends up, unless he plays us. Thus all but ending Flacco’s career in the Charm City. If he had put Flacco in and won, after this season the Ravens could have gotten much more for the aging quarterback than just a release from the team.
All and all, it might have not been the smartest decision by a Super Bowl winning head coach, although he has to live with it going forward with Lamar Jackson.