Joe Flacco admits he was ‘a little bit surprised’ Browns decided to move on, but ‘grateful’ to land with Colts

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Joe Flacco won a Super Bowl a little more than a decade ago with the Baltimore Ravens. His 11-year run with the Ravens came to an end after the 2018 season. He has become somewhat of a journeyman quarterback in the years since.

Last offseason, every NFL team passed on the opportunity to sign Flacco. But, Cleveland Browns quarterback Deshaun Watson suffered a season-ending injury in November and the team decided to reach out to Flacco.

He was signed to the Browns practice squad, but was soon elevated to the active roster and started in Cleveland’s Week 13 game against the Los Angeles Rams after rookie Dorian Thompson-Robinson was ruled out due to a head injury.

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Nov 26, 2023; Denver, Colorado, USA; Cleveland Browns quarterback Joe Flacco (15) on the sidelines during the second half against the Denver Broncos at Empower Field at Mile High. (Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports)

A resurgent Flacco went on to lift the Browns to a playoff berth, and he was later named the 2023 NFL Comeback Player of the Year.

Despite his strong play down the stretch last year, Flacco will start the upcoming 2024 season with the Indianapolis Colts. He is expected to backup second-year quarterback Anthony Richardson.

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The 39-year-old expressed gratitude for the opportunity with the Colts.

“It was obviously a little bit different than last offseason, when I didn’t get any calls at all,” Flacco said in reference to his free agency experience this offseason. “But even this offseason, I wasn’t really sure how it was going to go. It wasn’t like I played a ton of games last year or anything like that, but definitely grateful for Indy to reach out and have this as an opportunity.” 

He also acknowledged that he was “a little bit surprised” he did not land back with the Browns.

Joe Flacco on field

Cleveland Browns quarterback Joe Flacco reacts after throwing back-to-back pick six’s against the Houston Texans during the second half of an NFL wild-card playoff football game Saturday, Jan. 13, 2024, in Houston.  (AP Photo/David J. Phillip)

Flacco has certainly gained a considerable amount of knowledge over his 17 seasons playing quarterback in the NFL, and he hopes to use his experiences to help Richardson this year.

“Listen, I’ve kind of been in this role for a handful of years now,” Flacco said in reference to being a backup. “Obviously, last year was a little bit different cause I wasn’t anywhere, I was able to come in and play pretty quickly. But yeah, it’s just about being in the room with him and a lot of conversations naturally come up when you spend so much time together in a row. It’s just kind of I think being able to bring the experience and being able to help him simplify things and go out there and play fast and use his skillset the way he wants to.”

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Flacco went 4-1 as the Browns’ starter last season. 

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