Flacco's completion numbers slip

Flacco's completion numbers slip
November 9, 2012, 3:45 pm
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On two occasions, Joe Flacco has completed less than 50% of his passes.

The Ravens are 1-1 in those games but easily could be winless if the Kansas City Chiefs actually were a good team.

While the Ravens are 6-2 going into Sunday's matchup vs. the Oakland Raiders, coach John Harbaugh realizes Flacco has to be more accurate.

Flacco is only completing 59.8% of his passes for the season with his three worst performances coming on the road -- 52.4% in a 24-23 loss at the Philadelphia Eagles, 48.1% in a 9-6 win at Kansas City and 48.8% at the Houston Texans.

"We talk about being closer to 70 percent as a goal. That’s where we want to be," Harbaugh said of Flacco, who had a career-low 57.6% completion rate last season and a high of 62.6% in 2010. "We don’t want to be around 60 percent. We’re capable of being better than that. That’s kind of what we’re talking about in the second half of the season that has to improve.”

Last week's 25-15 win at the Cleveland Browns wasn't a gem by any standards as Flacco completed 15 of 24 passes (62.5%), but only threw for 153 yards.

He hasn't had a 300-yard passing game since Week 4, a 23-16 win vs. the Browns in Baltimore. In three of the Ravens' four games since then, he's thrown for less than 200 yards.

In the Ravens' first two wins of the season, Flacco completed 21 of 29 (72.4%) in a 44-13 home win vs. the Cincinnati Bengals and 28 of 39 (71.8%) in a 31-30 home win vs. the New England Patriots. The hurry-up offense hasn't been that efficient since then.

"We have to do better on first and second downs, give ourselves a better shot on third," said Flacco, reflecting on where the offense went wrong in last week's game after the Ravens scored two first-quarter touchdowns and failed to get another first down until the final quarter. "Even if that's not the case, we probably could have converted a couple of those or one of them or whatever it may have been. I don't know how many games I've been a part of that … probably a good amount.

"In the NFL, things can switch pretty quickly because you have two good teams. People adjust and get tired of getting touchdowns scored on them."